follow up on paraphyly / polyphyly

Barry Roth barry_roth at YAHOO.COM
Thu Nov 11 09:15:16 CST 2004

The issue of whether a taxon or group of taxa is holophyletic or not was of
interest well before cladistic methodology came along.  Hence, early
discussions of "natural" groups.  A tree/phylogenic hypothesis can be inspected
for paraphyly or polyphyly regardless of how it was constructed.  Nevertheless,
I agree that a theoretical framework should be decided upon explicitly early in
any discussion, if we want to get anywhere.

Barry Roth

--- Michael Schmitt <m.schmitt at UNI-BONN.DE> wrote:

> Of course, everybody is free to deem my posting as ideological.
> Nevertheless, I uphold a view (obviously) opposite to that of Zdenek Skala:
> I think, first we have to choose a theoretical background or frame, and
> then we (can) decide on possible solutions to problems. In my opinion, it
> makes sense only against a certain theoretical background or within a
> certain methodological frame to discuss on "problems", since only after
> having chosen a certain background we can recognise problems at all.

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