Mark Mayfield mhmayf at UNIX1.SNCC.LSU.EDU
Thu Oct 3 12:31:31 CDT 1996

>On Wed, 2 Oct 1996 18:22:50 -0400, Mark Garland wrote:
>>In a message dated 96-10-02 12:22:23 EDT, tdib at UMICH.EDU (Tom DiBenedetto)
>><< Cladistic parsimony approaches do not use
>> a particular model of evolutionary processes, but rather incorporate
>> relevant knowledge at a prior stage, at the level of formulating
>> hypotheses of homology. The algorithm is left to function as an
>> objective pattern-extractor from a data-set of characters which have
>> already been accepted as homologous. >>
>>Sounds like phenetics to me.

>not to me. (DiBenedetto)

Nor me either...  If I'm correct in my understanding that phenetics ignores
evolution, ergo homology, one of the basic differences between it and

The above I wrote yesterday immediately following DiBenedetto's response
above, but I witheld, thinking I may be off track.  Now I see I may have
some agreement with this, considering DiBenedetto's more eloquent response
to Richard Jensen (below).  Just how true is this?

*I disagree absolutely with this, There is no concept of homology in
*phenetics, no vision of individual characters as marks of history,
*and a reliance on measures of overall similarity. I dont know what
*you mean that we "start at the same point",,,with organisms?
*ok....The two approaches do not generate the same kind of data, and
*in cladistics we do not analyze with a variety of procedures.


Mark H. Mayfield
Collections Manager, LSU Herbarium
Dept. of Plant Biology
502 Life Sciences Bldg.
Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, Louisiana  70803

email-mhmayf at


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