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In earth sciences, significant importance is held by concept of Uniformitarianism, which entails that current processes performing in the similar way and with fundamentally the similar intensity as presently are adequate to describe for all geologic change. This paper seeks to analyze the concept of Uniformitarianism that has been a major theory of geology and almost all disciplines of science. The types of Uniformitarianism are also discussed along with a brief background of the doctrine. It is also discussed that how this theory aided in the development of the evolutionary theory proposed by Darwin. In several ways, uniformitarianism seemed to be contrary to religious beliefs. However, it is reasoned out that though controversies are involved with the doctrine but still this doctrine serves as a driving force not only for geological sciences but also for the evolutionary theory.

Table of Contents



Concept & its Origin3

Taxonomic Uniformitarianism6

Paleoecology and Uniformitarianism7

Examples of Implementation of Taxonomic Uniformitarianism7

Role of Differential Conservation in Application of Taxonomic Uniformitarianism10





Darwinian evolutionary theory has had a profound impact on our understanding of our species and on our worldview, even putting to one side its role in the social sciences. While it remains controversial in the public sphere, it is remarkably well confirmed by innumerable findings, and now coheres with our understanding of genetics in innumerable detailed ways. The true history of his development of his ideas is controversial, but there were perhaps four main influences on him in this respect.

One of the four influences was the Principles of Geology (1931), written by his mentor and friend, the geologist Charles Lyell (1797-1875), which Darwin read at the start of his famous five-year journey on the Beagle (1831-1836). Darwin was profoundly influenced by Lyell's methodological, as well as his factual claims. With respect to the former, Lyell was an uniformitarian. Broadly speaking, uniformitarianism is the view that the laws of nature have always been the same. For Lyell, this meant that geological features are to be explained by natural ("intermediate" not miraculous) processes that can still be observed to be in operation. Since he thought that these tended to bring about only slow and gradual change (e.g., a valley's formation from erosion), Lyell reasoned that the earth must be far older than the biblical 4,000 to 6,000 years. Although not a believer in evolution, Lyell also argued that investigation of the geological layers showed a continual introduction and extinction of species. This paper is aimed to provide the detailed information on this theory, the main methods that have been used to study this concept, the main methods that have been used to study this concept and how the concept has contributed to our understanding of evolutionary biology or paleontology. Discussion

Concept & its Origin

In geology, uniformitarianism is the doctrine which holds that alterations in the surface of earth that happened in past geologic time are imputable to the similar reasons as alterations, now being turned out upon the surface of earth. The doctrine implies that existing processes operating in similar mode and with ...
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