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An approach in evolutionary biology that assumes that most traits of an organism are adaptations which have evolved solely or chiefly by means of natural selection rather than by means of other processes such as genetic drift.

ad′ap·ta′tion·ist adj. & n.
References in periodicals archive ?
Under some conditions, Kant's notion of organism can thus allow for a synthesis of developmentalism and adaptationism.
Adaptation, Adaptationism and Optimality, in Adaptationism and Optimality 358, 362 (Stephen Hecht Orzak & Elliot Sober eds.
Gould & Lewontin, 1979) have argued strongly against optimal adaptationism, also citing the importance of seemingly arbitrary historical contingencies that act to entrench subsequent phylogenetic developments in morphology (e.
22) Cultural adaptationism would ethicize methodology while extolling societal musical identities.
Mental traits as fitness indicators: Expanding evolutionary psychology's adaptationism.
Another concern is that the book takes insufficient account of disagreements within the cognitive sciences over such fundamental matters as the modularity of the brain (vigorously disputed by many cognitive scientists), adaptationism or Darwinian explanations of how aspects of our brain, body, and behaviour have evolved (often disparagingly referred to as "just-so" stories), and theory of mind.
Adaptationism does not go unchallenged; however, the ordinary line of attack against adaptationism, exemplified by the Stern Review, does not stray very far from the foundations of the adaptationists' own analyses.
Modern adaptationism with concerns with the functional design of mechanisms given a recurrently structured ancestral world clarified how natural selection works, what counts as an adaptive function, and what are the criteria for calling a trait an adaptation.
This group, comprised of a wide variety of mainly Protestant interpreters of evolution, emphasized issues of evolutionary progress, Lamarckian adaptationism, and inner evolutionary drive, all of which were undermined by subsequent empirical and theoretical developments.
Adaptationism and Optimality, Cambridge, Estados Unidos, Cambridge University Press, pp.