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The Discovery of the Theory of Natural Selection by Darwin - Research Paper Example

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Since the dawn of civilization, man has tried to explain his existence and the development of all living things. Various theories have been established by scholars and philosophers and these theories have established various explanations and schools of thought on the existence of man and of the universe. …
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The Discovery of the Theory of Natural Selection by Darwin
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Download file to see previous pages No theory has been as revolutionary or as controversial as the theory by Charles Darwin in his thoughts on natural selection. This paper shall discuss the discovery of the theory of natural selection by Darwin. It shall first present a summary of the scientific theories about evolution before Darwin’s discovery of natural selection. It shall also provide a description of how the discovery was made, including what was going on in Darwin’s life for him to make the discovery. It shall then present a description of natural selection in terms of the modern evolutionary synthesis of the 20th century. Finally, this paper shall also apply the principles of natural selection, explaining why we have the current problem of bacteria which has become resistant to antibiotics. Discussion Evolutionary theories were first seen with the Greek philosophers who adhered to the ideas of origination, setting forth that all things originate from water or air, and that all matters come from one central and guiding principle (Think Quest). Medieval theories on evolution were dominated by Christianity and its teachings. Immanuel Kant set forth that based on similar qualities of organisms, all organisms come from a single source. He further discussed that a chimpanzee may develop organs which he would use for walking and grasping objects, and from these organs, the structure of man may evolve and develop into a social culture (Think Quest). Carolus Linnaeus first believes in a fixed quality or nature of species; however, with hybridization, he soon found out that new species can be built from the original species. He also considers hybridization as part of God’s plan. The British Admiralty in 1831 invited a naturalist to travel with Capt. Robert Fitzroy on a voyage in the HMS Beagle to survey Patagonia, Tierra del Fuego, Chile, Peru, and the Pacific Islands. Charles Darwin was recommended to join this voyage, and he journeyed with the Beagle for five years (Vardiman). His tour of the Cape Verde Islands provided him a practical application of Charles Lyell Principles of Geology with his views of volcanoes and other geological formations. In his tour, he was able to witness massive erosion downstream coming from glaciers. He then thought that the glaciers could not have been formed the way they did if the explanations of the Bible would be believed (Vardiman). He then considered truths in the explanations of Lyell and his doctrine of uniformitarianism. He saw his first tropical rain forest in Brazil and his first fossils in Argentina. He also saw the tribe of savage men in Tierra del Fuego, then he experienced his first earthquake in Chile. He climbed mountains, he observed finchs with varying beak lengths and he travelled the Galapagos islands, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Brazil, and then back to England (Vardiman). His theories stemmed from his travels on board the Beagle. His initial interests were on the geological, as evidenced by his first published books. After his voyage on the Beagle, he also attempted to explain his observations on birds and tortoises on the Galapagos Island. He then went on to consider explanations and theories in relation to anatomy, embryology, and geographical distribution (Vardiman). The concept of natural selection was eventually established due to the selection pressure which he related to the ecological niches of the different species. His theory was the first to “provide evidence for evolution and to explain how the process of natural selection produces adaptation” (Vardiman). Darwin approached natural selection from various perspectives and he discussed that due to the ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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The topic of "The Discovery of the Theory of Natural Selection by Darwin" is quite popular among the assignments in university. Still, this document opens a new perspective of seeing the problem. I’ll use the idea for my own paper.
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