Essay on Charles Darwin 's Theory Of Evolution And Natural Selection

1511 Words Mar 30th, 2016 null Page
The Evolution of Darwin
It is difficult to argue against the magnitude of the impact Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution and natural selection had on the world. It has revolutionized biology as we know it and given an exact definition of the term ‘species’. During his journey to develop this theory, a great number of people had influenced Darwin’s thinking and actions which eventually led to his elucidation of the mechanisms of evolution. This essay will examine some of these individuals in greater detail to examine how they had affected Darwin, either through modifying his thinking or a more direct form of assistance. Two such examples are the economist Thomas Malthus and the lawyer Charles Lyell. Malthus’s essay provided Darwin with the idea of selective pressure acting on individuals in a population which emerges from a shortage of food to support the ever growing population (1) while Lyell’s ‘Principles of Geology’ had etched into Darwin the uniformitarian view (1). The English philosophers of science John Herschel and William Whewell had sewn into Darwin the ideals of the hypethetico-deductive system which Darwin had followed in conceptualizing and constructing his theory (2). John Henslow, a botany professor and a mentor to Darwin, was the individual who had suggested Darwin as a naturalist for the HMS Beagle (3). Furthermore, Henslow’s mode of thinking had crept into Darwin through his time at Cambridge (3). Jean-Baptiste Lamarck, a rival to Darwin who was the first…

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