Talk:Genetics and the Origin of Species
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|A fact from Genetics and the Origin of Species appeared on Wikipedia's Main Page in the Did you know? column on 5 May 2014 (check views). The text of the entry was as follows: "Did you know
- Dawkins, R. The Selfish Gene. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1989.
- Dobzhansky, Theodosius. Genetics and the Origin of Species. The Columbia Classics in Evolution. New York: Columbia University Press, 1982.
- Dobzhansky, Theodosius. "The Present Evolution of Man." In American Decades Primary Sources, edited by Cynthia Rose, 545-47. Detroit: Gale, 2004.
- Futuyma, D. J. Evolutionary Biology. Sunderland, Mass: Sinauer Associates, Inc., 1986.
- Jr., Lloyd T. Ackert. "Theodosius Grigor'evich Dobzhansky." In Science and Its Times, 160-61. Detroit: Gale, 2000.
- Kohler, Robert E. Lords of the Fly. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1994.
- Landauer, Lyndall B. "The Genetic Foundation of Natural Selection." In Science and Its Times, 102-04. Detroit: Gale, 2000.
- "Theodosius Dobzhansky." In Encyclopedia of World Biography, 35-37. Detroit: Gale, 2004.
- This is a nice start, User:Jcf028. A few more sources I'd recommend:
- William B. Provine, "The Origin of Dobzhansky's Genetics and the Origin of Species", in The Evolution of Theodosius Dobzhansky (1994), M. B. Adams, ed., pp. 99-114. Princeton University Press.
- Vassiliki Betty Smocovitis, Unifying Biology: The Evolutionary Synthesis and Evolutionary Biology (1996). Princeton University Press.
- The latter is especially good for putting the book in broader context. The former I haven't read, but it probably has a lot of details that are directly relevant, so it might be a good source to use heavily for a first go at expanding the article.--ragesoss (talk) 20:02, 27 February 2014 (UTC)
Genetics and the Origin of Species - Outline
In his book, Genetics and the Origin of Species, Dobzhansky explains the biological theory of evolution. Through his experiments, Dobzhansky discovers that mutations of genes lead to evolution within a specific species. Adaptations play a large role in genetic drift, and it is known that genes and mutations influence this genetic drift in a particular environment. Specific genes and alleles are therefore passed on to future generations to continue the trend of modern evolution.
Polyploid cells have a chromosome number that is more than twice the haploid number. In Genetics and the Origin of Species, polyploidy is considered as a type of mutation. The effects of polyploidy between two different species causes hybridization and even greater evolution. These small chromosomal changes have large effects overall, and this emphasizes the importance of maintenance of species and populations.
Natural selection in an environment produces reproductive success, which benefits the species. Speciation is an process of evolution through which new biological species are formed. Adaptive evolution occurs through the dominance and survival of competing genes within a species. This is caused by increasing the frequency of those alleles whose phenotypic effects selfishly promote their own reproduction. Reproductive isolation slows gene flow and reduces the process of evolution.
In Genetics and the Origin of Species, Dobzhansky’s theory of modern evolutionary synthesis states that mutations of genes led to evolution within a species. Dobzhansky explains that all life, including humans, evolved through natural selection. This is critical knowledge not only for scientific progress, but for humanity as a whole. His theories became widely accepted and were eventually considered universal to the public eye. Dobzhansky's work was aimed at studying the process of evolution in action. His results support the theory of evolution, and lead to the enhanced way of thinking that genetics is studied today.
- Jcf028: This outline is alright as a starting point for covering the actual content of the book, which should make up a significant part of the article, but it doesn't do much to put the book into historical context, and I would say it is too general in its discussion of the scientific content, without clarifying what was and was not novel at the time it was published. Ultimately, I'd suggest that the outline (and the article itself) should cover the background (of Dobzhanky's prior work, in particular, and a bit about the relationship between evolutionary thought and genetics, and a bit about the emerging field of population genetics) of the book, its writing and publication, its actual content (with an emphasis on the aspects that were novel at the time), and its reception and influence.--ragesoss (talk) 13:39, 25 March 2014 (UTC)
After reading the article, there is not much I would suggest to improve the article. I believe the article currently meets all five elements of a high quality Wikipedia article. The lead section is clear and gives a good summary of the rest of the article; but, I think there could be more details on the contents of the book. The articles structure makes sense in its progression, and I wouldn't change a thing. The article also is neutral, and critics opinions are brought up routinely throughout the article. One addition that could be made, is ecologists beliefs on genetics and evolution prior to Dobzhansky's studies. But overall, the article is well written with balanced opinions and a clear structure, and I believe it is a great example of a "high-quality" Wikipedia article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 188.8.131.52 (talk) 01:18, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
This is a very important article to understanding evolution and the history of ecology; thank you for your work and well done. First, I thought the lead section provided a great summary of the article, and it was well written. I believe, however, that it would strengthen the lead section if it were slightly longer and included a sentence prefacing the discussion on mutations and natural section and speciation.
I thought the structure of the article was clear and understandable. The historical impact section is fitting and very helpful. Additionally, the headings and subheadings are placed correctly. I believe that the addition of picture of the book and Dobzhansky will improve the visual appeal of the article.
Next, I do not see a problem with the balance of this article as it touches on the important content of the book in addition to the effects the book. My only suggestion would be to explore sections of the book in addition to mutations and natural section and speciation.
I thought you did a great job of presenting the facts that were presented in the book. The article makes the main points of the book very understandable. Although this was a very well received book, I believe it would strengthen the article if you could find opposition or alternate opinions to the facts presented in the book.
Finally, you presented a variety of great references that make for a strong article. I did notice that there were points in the article that would benefit from a reference. For example, I found it peculiar that the first sentence of the article did not have a reference. Additionally, the opening to the “experiments” section would be strengthened with a reference.
Great job on your article! It is overall very informative and well organized, here are a few suggestions that I think would help you improve your article:
The lead section could be a few sentences longer by adding a quick summary saying what the book talked about such as mutations, and natural selection and speciation. The structure of the article looks great since you have headings and subheadings that are clear to the reader. I would suggest that in order to make the article more appealing you could add a picture of the book or of an experiment that was explained in the book. One good characteristic of your article is that it is well balanced, you do not spend too much time talking on one specific subject and each section receives an appropriate amount of attention. The coverage of the article does seem to be neutral, however the opposing views of other authors are not clearly exposed, therefore adding this to your article can make it even stronger. You also did a good job with adding references to your article. Overall you did a great job, and thank you for your contributions to Wikipedia. Aoc001 (talk) 06:32, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
My attention was drawn to this article by the DYK submission, and I find myself with two conflicting aims. First, I realize that the work by @Jcf028 is for a school project, and I want to welcome this student to Wikipedia and encourage them to contribute. However, this is also a hugely important book that deserves to appear on the DYK, and I think the article needs substantial revision before it can meet the criteria. So I will replace the content in the section Genetics and the Origin of Species#Historical impact – but first I will explain why in the hope it has some pedagogical value. Below are the contents of the section:
- In Genetics and the Origin of Species, Dobzhansky’s theory of modern evolutionary synthesis states that mutations of genes led to evolution within a species, which was not widely accepted by society at the time. This is fine, but should have been said earlier.
- By the mid-twentieth century genetics was a mature science with three major areas of concentration: molecular genetics, transmission genetics, and modern genetics. Doesn't connect with anything else.
- At this time, mutationism was opposed by many naturalists, who defended Darwin's theories of natural selection. Critics thought Darwinian natural selection was the major cause of evolution through the cumulative effects of slow and continuous variations. Belongs in the background section.
- In his book, Dobzhansky laid out an advanced account of the evolutionary process in genetic terms, and he backed up his work with experimental evidence supporting the theoretical arguments. O.k., if followed by a discussion about how this led to the field of experimental population and evolutionary genetics.
- This had a powerful impact on naturalists and experimental biologists, who quickly embraced this new understanding of the evolutionary process as one of genetic change in populations. This caused interest in evolutionary studies to be greatly stimulated, and contributions to the theory soon began to follow. Dobzhansky explains that all life, including humans, evolved through natural selection. This is critical knowledge not only for scientific progress, but for humanity as a whole. His theories became widely accepted and were eventually considered universal to the public eye. Dobzhansky's work was aimed at studying the process of evolution in action. His results support the theory of evolution, and lead to the enhanced way of thinking that genetics is studied today. This discussion rambles, mixing a discussion of Dobzhansky's later book, The Present Evolution of Man, with some sweeping statements about the book's influence.
Jcf028, you have chosen a good subject. For sources, there is an embarrassment of riches. I think the key to making this a good article is to follow the structure recommended in WikiProject Books, with (at a minimum) sections on background, contents, publication and reception (historical impact is fine). I think there is also some potential for a section on analysis, as Dobzhansky did not get it perfect on his first try. RockMagnetist (talk) 18:25, 15 April 2014 (UTC)
Thank you for you contributions and criticism regarding my word on this article. I have made changes using your advice so far. For the historical impact section, I tried to edit it based on the specific comments you gave me. I weeded out the information that related to his later book, "The Present Evolution of Man." I rearranged some of my sentences that you commented on, in a manner that is more appropriate for this section and that is more specific to the discussion of this book. I also took your advice and followed up the sentence, "In his book, Dobzhansky laid out an advanced account of the evolutionary process in genetic terms, and he backed up his work with experimental evidence supporting the theoretical arguments" with another sentence of how this led to stimulation of evolutionary genetics. Lastly, I removed some of the generic "sweeping statements".
Thanks again. I appreciate all of your help so far!
- @Jcf028: you're welcome. The text you put in looks good. There is still an important issue that needs sorting out, however. From what I have read, Dobzhansky did his most important work on Drosophila after the first edition of his book. I have added a section describing the contents of that first edition (I found a couple of excellent third-party sources for that), and eventually a lot of your text will need to be folded into a discussion of later editions. RockMagnetist (talk) 03:28, 20 April 2014 (UTC)
I see your point on Dobzhansky's major work done on "Drosophila" after the first edition of the book. I think adding the section "Contents of the first edition" will be very beneficial to the article in terms of locating the specifics in the first edition. I saw that the last three subheadings under this section have not been written about yet, so I started by adding a paragraph under "Isolating mechanisms." I plan to keep adding information to complete this section on the first edition contents. I also removed and reworded some of the content under "Natural selection and speciation" because it talked a lot about isolation, and now isolation has a subsection of its own under "Contents of the first edition".
Thanks again for your contributions and I look forward to hearing more of your opinion on this article!
- I'm glad you're working on those sections. I ran out of time. RockMagnetist (talk) 21:53, 22 April 2014 (UTC)
- BTW, I strongly recommend you look at the Gould and Eldridge references when you are doing this part of the article. You can see quite a lot of each book using Look Inside! on Amazon (Google Books turns out to be less useful). RockMagnetist (talk) 21:56, 22 April 2014 (UTC)
The discussion of DNA in this article is an anachronism. DNA is not mentioned once in Genetics and the Origin of Species, and for good reason - its role in heredity was not confirmed until 1952. RockMagnetist (talk) 15:21, 16 April 2014 (UTC)
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