Darwin, Lamarck and the ants

The educational reality I can talk about here in this blog is the reality in which I grew up: my experiences as a student and after that my experiences at the other side of the process, as a teacher, from the early 90’s to last year — I don’t give classes anymore. Yes, this is a biased view, but I never meant to generalize it: I bear very clearly in mind that what I know and the pedagogical experiences I have refer to my country and my country only. I don’t know much about biology classes in other countries, and I hope, for their best, that they are not like what I experienced. Continue reading


A non-existent antagonism

The original text of the 1st edition (1859) says:

From the facts alluded to in the first chapter, I think there can be little doubt that use in our domestic animals strengthens and enlarges certain parts, and disuse diminishes them; and that such modifications are inherited. Under free nature, we can have no standard of comparison, by which to judge of the effects of long-continued use or disuse, for we know not the parent-forms; but many animals have structures which can be explained by the effects of disuse.

The excerpt, as you can easily see by the publication date, is from Charles Darwin, not from Jean Baptiste de Monet (aka Chevalier de Lamarck). Continue reading