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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.
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References in periodicals archive ?
Another method of African philosophy that is relevant to African environmental ethics research is cultural adaptationism, a methodological paradigm identified with neo-universalists school in African philosophy.
Kant's Concept, of Organism Revisited: A Framework for a Possible Synthesis between Developmentalism and Adaptationism? PHILIPPE HUNEMAN
Trying to solve the problem of style in Indian music, George Herzog, for example, suggests that "we have to consider the current notions of tribal or national styles as integrated, homogeneous pictures which tend after due time to assimilate new additions to their background, maintaining and restoring their 'original' integrity." (22) Cultural adaptationism would ethicize methodology while extolling societal musical identities.
(67.) Schneider, supra note 54, at 40; see also Egbert Giles Leigh, Jr., Adaptation, Adaptationism and Optimality, in Adaptationism and Optimality 358, 362 (Stephen Hecht Orzak & Elliot Sober eds., 2001) ("[N]atural selection requires variation in order to effect change."); Martin A.
Moreover, some (e.g., 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.g., Gould, 1989).
The developmental renaissance in adaptationism. Trends in Ecology and Evolution.
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.