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Transformations of LamarckismFrom Subtle Fluids to Molecular Biology$
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Snait B. Gissis and Eva Jablonka

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780262015141

Published to MIT Press Scholarship Online: August 2013

DOI: 10.7551/mitpress/9780262015141.001.0001

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Germinal Selection: A Weismannian Solution to Lamarckian Problematics

Germinal Selection: A Weismannian Solution to Lamarckian Problematics

(p.57) 6 Germinal Selection: A Weismannian Solution to Lamarckian Problematics
Transformations of Lamarckism

Charlotte Weissman

The MIT Press

This chapter analyzes August Weismann's theory of germinal selection—a process of competition and selection among the hereditary units within the germplasm. He argued that the germ line was not affected by the changes undergone by the somatic cells during the organism's lifetime and that heritable adaptive evolutionary changes resulted from the operation of natural selection on individuals, a form of selection that he called “personal selection”. The chapter examines the problems that challenged Weismann's original focus on personal selection and explains how he interpreted them in terms of his germinal selection theory.

Keywords:   August Weissman, germinal selection, germplasm, germ line, somatic cells, natural selection, personal selection

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