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Foundations of Systematics and Biogeography

Authors: Williams, David M., Ebach, Malte C.

  • Will explode some myths currently part of biology
  • Reasserts – and re-states – the principal aims of comparative biology, especially in relation to evolutionary studies
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eBook $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-387-72730-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $129.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-387-72728-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $129.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-4419-4445-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
About this book

This volume draws attention to the seminal studies and important
advances that have shaped systematic and biogeographic thinking and
continue to influence its direction today. It traces concepts in
homology and classification from the 19th century to the present
through the provision of a unique anthology of scientific writings
from Goethe, Agassiz, Geoffroy St. Hilaire, Owen, Naef, Zangerl and
Nelson, among others. In addition, current attitudes and practices in
comparative biology are interrogated, particularly in relation to
evolutionary studies leading to a re-statement of the principal aims
of the discipline. In order to alert prospective students to pitfalls
common in systematics and biogeography, the book highlights three
principal messages: biological classifications and their explanatory
mechanisms are separate notions; most, if not all, homology concepts
pre-date the works of Darwin; and that the foundation of all
comparative biology is the concept of relationship - neither
'similarity' nor 'genealogical hypotheses of descent' are sufficient. Foundations of Systematics and Biogeography is an ideal volume for students, academics, researchers and professionals in the fields of systematics, biogeography, evolutionary biology and palaeontology.

About the authors

David M. Williams is a diatom researcher and Head of Global Biodiversity Group in the Department of Botany, The Natural History Museum, London.
He has published over 150 scientific papers, including 6 books. Among his books he is a co-author of the standard text Cladistics: The Theory and Practice of Parsimony Analysis (1992) and co-editor on Models in Phylogeny Reconstruction (1994) and Milestones in Systematics (2004). He is interested in the history and theory of systematics and biogeography and the systmatics of diatoms.

Malte C. Ebach is the WP5 Scientific Coordinator for the European Distributed Institute of Taxonomy at the Botanic Garden and Botanical Museum Berlin-Dahlem. His interests include the history and theory of comparative biology (systematics and biogeography), Goethe's way of Science and when he has the time, trilobite taxonomy.

Reviews

From the reviews:

"Using a historical approach, Williams (Natural History Museum, London) and Ebach (Freie Universität, Berlin) illuminate the differences among the competing philosophical camps of systematicists. Their work provides incisive definitions of many conceptual and interpretational aspects of systematics and biogeography. … The authors’ apparent intent is … to provide focus for the next phase of debate on the practice and philosophy of phylogenetics. Summing Up: Recommended. Graduate students and researchers/faculty." (S. R. Fegley, CHOICE, Vol. 45 (9), 2008)

"This is a book worth pondering. … Williams and Ebach have produced a book from which almost all of us can learn things we did not know about the history and practice of our field. It should be especially useful for students, who may even discover that there is more to systematics than just choosing a model, running some software, and varying its parameters until the results seem at least vaguely palatable." (Norman I. Platnick, Systematic Biology, Vol. 85, 2009)


Table of contents (3 chapters)

  • Pattern Cladistics

    David M. Williams, Malte C. Ebach

    Pages 82-125

  • Homology and Systematics

    David M. Williams, Malte C. Ebach

    Pages 155-167

  • Biogeographical Relationships, Evolution, and Classification

    David M. Williams, Malte C. Ebach

    Pages 228-258

Buy this book

eBook $99.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-387-72730-1
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Hardcover $129.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-0-387-72728-8
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
Softcover $129.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-1-4419-4445-0
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Usually dispatched within 3 to 5 business days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Foundations of Systematics and Biogeography
Authors
Copyright
2008
Publisher
Springer US
Copyright Holder
Springer-Verlag US
eBook ISBN
978-0-387-72730-1
DOI
10.1007/978-0-387-72730-1
Hardcover ISBN
978-0-387-72728-8
Softcover ISBN
978-1-4419-4445-0
Edition Number
1
Number of Pages
XVIII, 310
Number of Illustrations and Tables
83 b/w illustrations
Topics