[Taxacom] cladistics (was: clique analysis in textbooks)

Kenneth Kinman kennethkinman at webtv.net
Wed Aug 17 09:35:48 CDT 2011

Hi Pierre, 
      I am pretty sure that the word "cladist" was first
used by Ernst Mayr in the 1960s for those who followed Hennig's
classificatory philosophy of recognizing ONLY strictly monophyletic
(i.e. holophyletic) taxa.  So this was in reference to classification,
not to any particular analytical method. I prefer to call them "strict
cladists" as this seems more precise.    
      I am not sure when Mayr start calling such
classifications "cladifications". However, such terminology makes a
distinction between the Hennigian approach to classification
(cladifications only) and the more traditional type of classifications
advocated by eclecticists  ("evolutionary systematists").       
      Mayr (1997) says "In principle, a cladistic classification is a
single-character classification."  and "However, as valuable as a
cladogram is for phylogenetic studies, it [Hennig's system] violates
almost all the principles of a traditional classification."  Mayr  then
lists the seven major deficiencies of cladifications (see his 1997 book
"This is Biology", pages 144-146).   
        ---------Ken Kinman

Pierre Deleporte wrote: 
Hi Ken, 
do you know if "cladist" originally qualified a nomenclatural procedure
(naming only holophyletic-monophyletic clades: your pet topic on this
list) rather than a phylogenetic analysis method? (now widely called
"parsimony analysis" or "maximum parsimony analysis" by contrast with
"maximum likelihood analysis"). 
e.g. the program "PAUP" means "Phylogeny analysis using parsimony" (not
and the scope of the journal "Cladistics" is not restricted to parsimony

analysis only 
it seems to me that the discussions could be clarified by restricting
the use of "cladist" to name the nomenclatural procedure while using
"parsimony" for phylogenetic analysis, the more when "cladistics" as a
method covers a range of diverse procedures (unweighted or weighted
parsimony with possibly different weighting schemes, compatibility
"clique" analysis with possibly different thresholds of selection...) 

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