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Social Evolution and Inclusive Fitness TheoryAn Introduction$
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James A.R. Marshall

Print publication date: 2015

Print ISBN-13: 9780691161563

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: October 2017

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691161563.001.0001

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Heritability, Maximization, and Evolutionary Explanations

Heritability, Maximization, and Evolutionary Explanations

(p.90) Chapter Eight Heritability, Maximization, and Evolutionary Explanations
Social Evolution and Inclusive Fitness Theory

James A.R. Marshall

Princeton University Press

This chapter examines which of the equivalent alternative partitions of fitness, including inclusive fitness and group fitness, can be interpreted as being subject to natural selection in a meaningful way. Inclusive fitness theory can deal with subtleties such as nonadditive fitness effects and conditionally expressed phenotypes. However, selection based on inclusive fitness gives equivalent predictions to other models of apparently different evolutionary processes, such as multilevel selection. The chapter considers how we can determine whether inclusive fitness really captures the essence of social evolution and whether inclusive fitness is really maximized by the action of selection, as suggested by William D. Hamilton. It also explains what heritability measures, and whether this makes sense biologically. Finally, it discusses the problem of classifying observed social behaviors in terms of their underlying evolutionary explanations.

Keywords:   evolution, fitness, inclusive fitness, inclusive fitness theory, phenotype, multilevel selection, social evolution, heritability, social behaviors, natural selection

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