revolution

Alan Harvey aharvey at AMNH.ORG
Thu Oct 3 10:56:52 CDT 1996


>I have to admit that if one substituted the word Phenetics for the phrase
>"Cladistic parsimony" below, then one does have a description of
>phenetics.  There is a tendency to forget that both phenetic and
>cladistics analyses start at the same points, generate the same kinds of
>data, and may be analyzed by a variety of procedures.  They both can
>claim objectivity, but they both have a large measure of inherent
>subjectivity - involving algorithmic options.  One way that they do
>differ, and this is a key difference, is that cladistics generally adds a
>layer between character description and analysis - hypothesized
>transformation series.
>
Actually, I'd suggest that the key difference between phenetics and
cladistics is NOT a layer of hypothesized transformation series inserted
between character description and analysis (some cladists may do this but
it's neither required nor even necessarily desirable), but rather that
cladistics does not by default equate SIMILARITY with RELATEDNESS.

Cheers,

Alan

------------------------------------

Alan W. Harvey (aharvey at amnh.org)
Assistant Curator of Invertebrates
American Museum of Natural History
Central Park West at 79th Street
New York, NY 10024
(212) 769-5638; fax (212) 769-5783
http://research.amnh.org/~aharvey




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