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The Major Transitions in Evolution Revisited$
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Brett Calcott and Kim Sterelny

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262015240

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262015240.001.0001

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Plant Individuality and Multilevel Selection Theory

Plant Individuality and Multilevel Selection Theory

Chapter:
(p.227) 11 Plant Individuality and Multilevel Selection Theory
Source:
The Major Transitions in Evolution Revisited
Author(s):

Ellen Clarke

Publisher:
The MIT Press
DOI:10.7551/mitpress/9780262015240.003.0012

This chapter develops the idea that the germ-soma split and the suppression of individual fitness differences within the corporate entity are not always essential steps in the evolution of corporate individuals. It illustrates some consequences for multilevel selection theory. It presents evidence that genetic heterogeneity may not always be a barrier to successful functioning as a higher-level individual. This chapter shows that levels-of-selection theorists are wrong to assume that the central problem in transitions is always that of minimizing within-group competition. Evidence of intralevel conflict does not qualify as evidence against the existence of a higher level of selection.

Keywords:   germ-soma split, fitness differences, multilevel selection theory, genetic heterogeneity, intralevel conflict

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