Showing posts with the label Alfred Russel Wallace

Alfred Russel Wallace, the Victorian Outsider

Over at Evolution News and Science Today , an Intelligent Design site operated by the Discovery Institute, Alfred Russel Wallace is receiving a great deal of attention in his bicentennial year. Professor Michael A. Flannery has written a book and several articles about Wallace. A spell back, I wrote about whether or not we would have evolutionary theory if Charles Darwin had never been born . Since evolution is ancient, it would have been assembled and popularized in a "scientific" format. Alfie almost did that, but Charlie got to the publisher first. Alfred Russel Wallace, ca. 1865 A.F. Wallace did quite a bit of science, but he was eclipsed by Darwin . A problem for him both then and now is that he dabbled in many areas, some of which seemed frivolous. Wallace seemed like an interesting individual. But the Bearded Buddha focused on his own specific areas, which was apparently applauded instead of the multi-faceted aspects of Alfred. Also, Wallace was a kind of forerunner of

Flying Frogs by Design

There are several kinds of critters that have the flying  moniker, but they do not actually fly. Those that have been designed by the Creator to spend some time in the air can glide  impressive distances. No need to fault people for calling them flying whatevers, because they do appear to be doing so for a moment. Flying frogs? It is not Spiteful Sebastian flinging them into the pond, but there are several kinds of tree frogs that can glide nicely (controlled fall) when they have a mind to. Wallace's flying frog ( Rhacophorus nigropalmatus ), Flickr / Khao Sok National Park  ( CC BY-SA 2.0 ) Is this natural selection at work? It's probably involved, though some Darwinists invoke the non-science term parallel evolution . That'll be the day! Remember Alfred Russel Wallace who also came up with the idea of evolution by natural selection, but Darwin got the credit? (If Wallace had written a book first, we may have been given a kinder, gentler evolution because Alf believed in a

Alfred Russel Wallace and Evolution

Instead of Darwinism, we almost had Wallacism. Alfred Russel Wallace was a contemporary of Darwin, and arrived at very similar ideas on evolution by natural selection. Perhaps they were both influence by Comte de Buffon . Like other evolutionists at that time, he had little or no formal scientific training (Darwin studied theology), but Wallace did a passel of fieldwork and did some real science. When Chuck found out about Alfie's ideas, he hurried up and had his book published first. Alfred Russel Wallace, circa 1895 via Wikimedia Commons One major difference between Wallace and Darwin was the teleological (purpose and design) views of Wallace. For Darwin and his disciples, any hint of a Creator was bad medicine. Don't be disunderstanding me now, the two gents rode for the evolution brand for the most part, but Wallace was not an atheist. Although Darwin and Wallace had some disagreements, I am not aware that they went on letter-writing campaigns to discredit each oth