Re: Future of Species paper

Max More (
Sun, 17 Jan 1999 13:19:54 -0800

At 11:40 AM 1/16/99 -0500, Harvey wrote:
>I'm not sure why you would submit suggestions for new species
>classifications to philosophy journals. I realize that your expertise
>is in philosophy, but if this is a serious suggestion for the extension
>to the biological nomenclature, you need to send it for peer-review to
>those who develop and confirm said nomenclature. Unless the philosophy
>journals you are considering are specifically intended to address the
>philosophy of biological nomenclature, I would suggest that your
>submission might be misdirected.

Yes, the journals I'm considering specialize in philosophy of biology and philosophy of science. Some of these journals include papers by people like Ernst Mayr, one of the leading evolutionary biologists, along with philosophers whose expertise lies in analyzing these concepts as used by scientists. Mayr's own papers on the meaning of "species" are just as much philosophy as they are biology

>If it has not been reviewed by a biologist, and if you do not have
>specific training in biological nomenclature

Philosophers who are writing papers in philosophy of science know that they need to thoroughly understand the scientists vocabulary. I'm surprised that you would think I would consider submitting a paper on species without carefully researching the area.

I found the rest of your comments puzzling. Perhaps you are unfamiliar with philosophy of science. I'm not proposing new nomenclature that scientists should adopt through a standards committee. I'm doing what philosophers frequently do and which is their job--to analyze the concepts used in other disciplines. The whole purpose of journals in philosophy of science is to bring together philosophers and scientists to analyze and critique existing concepts and methods, and to examine underlying assumptions.


Max More, Ph.D.
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Philosophical issues of technology
President, Extropy Institute:,