potential theory and concluded that no actual theory could be found—and that a full account of causes could therefore be located in the microevolutionary realm after all. I argue that Simpson was unduly pessimistic and that modernism's belief in reductionistic unification (the conventional view of Western intellectuals from the 1920s to the 1950s) needs to be supplanted by a postmodernist commitment to pluralism and multiple levels of causation. Macro- and microevolution should not be viewed as opposed, but as truly complementary. I describe the two major domains where a helpful macroevolutionary theory may be sought—unsmooth causal boundaries between levels (as illustrated by punctuated equilibrium and mass extinction) and hierarchical expansion of the theory of natural selection to levels both below (gene and cell-line) and above organisms (demes, species, and clades). Problems remain in operationally defining selection at non-organismic levels (emergent traits vs. emergent fitness approaches, for example) and in specifying the nature and basis of levels, but this subject should be the central focus in formulating a more ample and satisfactory general theory of evolution on extended Darwinian principles.


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