systematics V taxonomy

Tue Sep 10 17:25:53 CDT 2002

Susan et al.,

I would vote for "mostly semantic."  The fact that we have a term "alpha
taxonomy" to describe the older methodologies seems to imply that there are
other types of taxonomy as well, which most would probably put under the
broader name, "systematics", but could equally well continue to call
"taxonomy."  This leads up to what I think was Jacques Melot's point which
is, do we really need two terms at present since they historically meant
just about the same thing?  On this , I would say "no, we don't need two
terms, but we have them!"  (Parenthetically, had the language regarding the
term "biology" evolved similarly to that which has happened to the term
"taxonomy", we would probably be calling organismal biology "alpha biology"
and the rest something else most of the time.)


At 05:00 PM 9/5/02 -0400, Susan B. Farmer wrote:
>Several grad students were sitting around discussing/debating the
>differences between systematics and taxonomy.  Are there *really*
>any differences, or is the distincting mostly semantic?
>Susan, curious in Tennessee
>Susan Farmer
>sfarmer at
>Botany Department, University of Tennessee

Stephen D. Manning, Ph.D.
Professor of Biology
Mathematics and Science Division
Arkansas State University - Beebe
P. O. Box 1000
Beebe, Arkansas 72012-1000
Tel: 501-882-7162

More information about the Taxacom mailing list