Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Nearly a Treat

Check out Jerry Fodor's Why Pigs Don't Fly in this week's London Review of Books. It's telling that the (second?) greatest modern proponent of 19th-Century-style psychological positivism quotes Wagner, instead of the more obvious Pink Floyd, in this otherwise enjoyable article on the spandrels debate. Adaptationism is dogma, as you can see by the third question in this Massachusetts high-school science exam (hat tip: Philip Greenspun's blog). Fodor's annoyance with the hunter-gatherer explanation for everything reminds me of Andy Clark's Natural Born Cyborgs, which makes a related point: most of us haven't been hunting or gathering for a very long time now, and we seem to be doing pretty well.

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