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Lecture 1

BIOL 1001 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Pax Britannica, Erasmus Darwin, Victorian Era

Course Code
BIOL 1001
Alexander Mills

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Wednesday, January 11, 2017
Developing Ideas About Evolution
Theory of Creation vs Theory of Evolution
-All species are successful, no species is “higher” than another
-Which of theses os least likely to constitute an example of regressive evolution?
Cavefish have no eyes but they have eye sockets
-they are simpler than their ancestors
Indian Pipe (wildflower) is white but has ancestors with chlorophyll
-have different food source from the soil
Baleen whales feed using a big ‘filter’, but ancestors had teeth
-this is more of an adaptation
Snakes are legless but their fossil ancestors had legs
-this is incorrect
Charles Darwin (1809-1882)
Wealthy British family
-Came from family of doctors
-didn't have a income, had family wealth
-had lots of privilege
Apologies: Most of 19th century science is dominated by European, white, males
Historical: Why modern science arose in Europe is a matter of considerable controversy
Nineteenth Century
-with the British boasting unchallenged dominance after 1815. After the defeat of the
French Empire and its allies in the Napoleonic Wars, the British and Russian empires
expanded greatly, becoming the world's leading powers. The Russian Empire
expanded in central and far eastern Asia. The British Empire grew rapidly in the first
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Wednesday, January 11, 2017
half of the century, especially with the expansion of vast territories in Canada,
Australia, South Africa and heavily populated India, and in the last two decades of the
century in Africa. By the end of the century, the British Empire controlled a fifth of the
world's land and one quarter of the world's population. During the post Napoleonic era
it enforced what became known as the Pax Britannica, which had ushered into
unprecedented globalisation, Industrialisation, and economic integration on a massive
-Victorian Era, they ruled many countries
stamp shows what England controlled
-Charles Darwin grad with a degree in what?
started in Med then grad in theology
went to Cambridge, spent a lot of time with “scientists”
-thats what he really loved
-loved to collect beetles
-wasn't very focussed in academics
-Grad at 22 in 1831 with BA
after Grad he went on a ship to royal expedition to South America
-it took 5 years, (1831-1836)
-Captain Fitzroy and Drawin were not friendly (bc of his liberal views)
Time spent on land, majority of the time
-collected a lot of specimens
Origin of Species: 2 contributions
- Descent with Modification
was the theory
tree of life
-Mechanism: Natural Selection
green beetles are preferred by the crows
later the green disappears
-Ancient Greeks: Anaximander?
species over time, not necessarily gradually
independent of the Judeo- Christian -Muslim lineage
Was an observer not an experimenter
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