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Related to Orthogenesis: Saltationism, orthogneiss


A unidirectional evolutionary change among a related group of animals.
McGraw-Hill Dictionary of Scientific & Technical Terms, 6E, Copyright © 2003 by The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc.
The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



the hypothesis that evolution proceeds directly toward higher adaptive states.

Orthogenesis is rooted in the views of J. B. Lamarck. The German scientists W. Haacke, who introduced the term “orthogenesis,” and G. H. T. Eimer, who used this term extensively, proceeded from the mechanistic Lamarckian position that the direction of evolution is controlled by the immediate influence of the environment and that the internal organization of an individual can change only in certain set directions. Subsequently, “orthogenesis” was often used to describe evolution as being controlled by an internal driving force as well as by the immediate influence of the environment.

Modern evolutionary theory, according to which the direction of evolution is a result of natural selection, usually contradicts the concept of orthogenesis. Although linearity is a feature of evolutionary change, modern theory attributes it to limitations imposed on the structural features of the organism; linearity essentially is the result of natural selection in past generations. (See AUTOGENESIS, LAMARCKISM.)


Simpson, G. G. Tempy i formy evoliutsii. Moscow, 1948. (Translated from English.)
Shmal’gauzen, I. I. Problemy darvinizma, 2nd ed. Leningrad, 1969.
Haacke, W. Gestaltung und Vererbung, Leipzig, 1893.
Eimer, G. H. T. Die Entstehung der Arten. part 2: Die Orthogenesis der Schmetterlinge. Leipzig, 1897.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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Creolization reintroduces a qualified emphasis of the process of "orthogenesis" for the modern-day metropolis in the global landscape, and takes a theoretical position that is situated between two poles of globalization.
Even if one were able to get along without miracles, there would still be a fundamental difference between orthogenesis and Darwinian evolution, insofar as the reality of change is concerned.
So he was obviously presupposing a kind of orthogenesis, as did his many followers in the social sciences.
Bowler (1983) defines "orthogenesis" in a way that clearly situates it within the internalist metaphor.
Darwinism had been replaced by a guided evolution in which direction or orthogenesis operated.
inside parallelism, orthogenesis, and whatnot, but these notions seemed
The critics of orthogenesis contend that this conception of the evolutionary process is fundamentally flawed, and wishful thinking.
The modern synthesis of the 1940s rid evolutionary biology of teleological theories such as aristogenesis and orthogenesis (Romer 1949; Mayr 1988), but more biologically plausible theories have been formulated that predict an inherently directional course of evolution as a result of both intrinsic and extrinsic factors (Alberch 1980; LaBarbera 1986; Vermeij 1987; Bonner 1988; McKinney 1990).
The idea of tendency in itself is teleological (Bernier, 1984); it refers back to ideas like progression and progress, orthogenesis, creative force (i.e., Bildungstrieb).
Parasites, with their presumed evolutionarily degenerate nature, overspecialization, and dependence on their hosts, were thus considered key examples of orthogenesis. No longer masters of their own destiny, their evolutionary fate was sealed; they were totally dependent upon and molded by their hosts.