[Marxism] Robert Brenner follow-up

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Fri Dec 3 18:44:52 MST 2004

>Gould DIDN'T believe that "Ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny," but 
>specifically rejected that formulation of Ernst Haeckel's, as do most 
>modern evolutionary biologists. In fact, he wrote a book on that theory, 
>called, appropriately enough, Ontogeny and Phylogeny. He considered it an 
>essentialist concept.

Maybe I used the wrong term, but I was thinking of Gould's article on the 
male nipple and the clitoris which tried to explain how certain parts of 
the body are retained from earlier stages of evolution despite having a 
different use than they originally had. For example, the clitoris was a 
penis at one time, but now functions as an organ involved with sexual 
climax. In an analogous fashion, the 'mita' was once used as a way for 
Incans to serve the Emperor on road-building, etc. but under Spanish rule 
involved into a form of labor exploitation. All I was trying to say is that 
species incorporate earlier stages of evolution. I think that's still true, 
whatever Hackel said. Right?

Louis Proyect
Marxism list: www.marxmail.org 

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