Darwin (was: Phylogenetic evidence)

Barry Roth barry_roth at YAHOO.COM
Sat Jul 13 10:39:39 CDT 2002

According to my notes, the distinction between taxonomy and classification has not been overlooked by (among others):
Griffiths, G.C.D. 1974.  Acta Biotheor. 23:85-131.
Hennig, W.  1975.  Syst. Zool. 24: 244-256.
Ax, P. 1987.  The Phylogenetic  System. J. Wiley & Sons, Chichester.  340 pp.
de Queiroz, K.  1988. Philos. Sci. 55: 238-259.
de Queiroz, K. & J. Gauthier  1990.  Syst. Zool. 307-322.
I have tried to keep the distinction clear in my work (e.g., The Veliger 39: 18-42), but I admit that the vocabulary slips a bit sometimes, as here in Taxacom.  The main point to be taken, I think, is not that the results of phylogenetic analysis (cladistics) are not to be regarded as paramount, but that the activity most of us should by concerned with is taxonomy, not classification.  There is nothing to stop anyone from classifying taxa by any character-state or combination of states ("gastropod nose length"); but of how broad a utility, and how good at predicting the distribution of other (perhaps yet undiscovered) character-states, will such classifications be?
Barry Roth
 Ken Kinman wrote: [...] Eric B. Knox, 1998 (Biological Journal of the Linnean Society, 63:1-49):
"The distinction between systematization and classification has been
politely overlooked or twenty years. 'Cladistic classification' is
unattainable given the lack of class concepts in cladistics."

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