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Oops - Frank Landry

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To the Editor:

Mr. Berube is quite right! I did indeed misremember, however I do stand behind the comments I made concerning both subjects.

As for "What Darwin Got Wrong," I plan to get my own copy since I like to underline pertinent passages for future reference. I will read it and keep it for reference, but, due to a rather busy schedule at the moment, it may be a while especially since the controversy is rather complicated and involved as evidenced by the multitude of reviews and comments generated. I must admit a certain personal discomfort with the idea of a philosopher keeping up with and understanding the involved science of biological anthropology plus absorbing the amazing modern advances in DNA research and the exciting worldwide series of so many archaeological discoveries of recent years.

I offer the following quote as an indication of where I stand: "Yet another way to understand how strange Fodor and Piattelli-Palmarini's argument is, is to realize that if they were right and only law-like hypotheses supporting counterfactuals were to be given the status of science, then all the historical sciences would go down the drain, not just evolutionary biology. This flies in the face of all post-positivist scholarship in the philosophy of science.

By the end of the book, the reader will likely ask, 'What do Fodor and Piattelli-Palmarini purport to replace the theory of natural selection with?' [They] do not bother to provide us with any plausible alternative narrative. That's probably why the book is so slim."

Given that this letters to the editor forum is totally inadequate, I propose that Mr. Berube and I get together at some future date for an honest discussion. Should be interesting.

Frank Landry

St. Johnsbury, Vt.


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