PHIL 202 AMU Charles Darwin Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection Essay

I need help talking about Darwin’s theory of evolution and natural selection and argue on its behalf. I also need to talk about how It also influenced not just the scientific community but the philosophy of science as well. Attached is my research proposal stating what I will be talking about. The whole paper is one big argument about my topic. Starting with a thesis statement. I also attached a sample MLA paper. I would love some ideas on how Darwin’s theory is correct through his own evidence and evidence found afterward. Also, how he evolved evolution theory through his findings.

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and year.
Angeli 1
Elizabeth L. Angeli
Professor Patricia Sullivan
English 624
14 December 2008
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contain explanations
of MLA style
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and citing in MLA
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appears on
every page.
Toward a Recovery of Nineteenth Century Farming Handbooks
While researching texts written about nineteenth century farming, I found a few
authors who published books about the literature of nineteenth century farming,
particularly agricultural journals, newspapers, pamphlets, and brochures. These authors
or introduction, should
set the
context for
the rest of
the paper.
Tell your
why you
are writing
and why
your topic
often placed the farming literature they were studying into an historical context by
discussing the important events in agriculture of the year in which the literature was
published (see Demaree, for example). However, while these authors discuss journals,
newspapers, pamphlets, and brochures, I could not find much discussion about another
important source of farming knowledge: farming handbooks. My goal in this paper is to
bring this source into the agricultural literature discussion by connecting three
agricultural handbooks from the nineteenth century with nineteenth century agricultural
To achieve this goal, I have organized my paper into four main sections, two of
If your
paper is
long, you
may want
to write
about how
your paper
This will
help your
follow your
which have sub-sections. In the first section, I provide an account of three important
events in nineteenth century agricultural history: population and technological changes,
Titles are
and written
in 12-point,
Times New
font. The
title is not
The thesis
usually is
the last
sentence of
The thesis
is a clear
that you
will support
your paper.
guides or
your paper.
the distribution of scientific new knowledge, and farming’s influence on education. In the
second section, I discuss three nineteenth century farming handbooks in connection with
the important events described in the first section. I end my paper with a third section that
offers research questions that could be answered in future versions of this paper and
MLA requires
throughout a
document; do
not single-space
any part of the
Angeli 2
conclude with a fourth section that discusses the importance of expanding this particular
project. I also include an appendix after the Works Cited that contains images of the three
handbooks I examined. Before I can begin the examination of the three handbooks,
however, I need to provide an historical context in which the books were written, and it is
to this that I now turn.
after the Blevel
start flush
left after
When using headings in
MLA, title the main
sections (B-level
headers) in a different
style font than the
paper’s title, e.g., in
small caps.
The headings used here follow an A-, B-, Clevel system to break the text into smaller
sections. The different levels help organize
the paper and maintain consistency in the
paper’s organization. You may come up with
your own headings as long as they are
The nineteenth century saw many changes to daily American life with an increase in
population, improved methods of transportation, developments in technology, and the
rise in the importance of science. These events impacted all aspects of nineteenth century
American life, most significantly those involved in slavery and the Civil War, but a large
part of American life was affected, a part that is quite often taken for granted: the life of
the American farmer.
style, e.g.,
italics, to
differentiate the Clevel
from the Blevel
after the
pronouns (I,
we, us,
etc.) at
though not
required by
MLA style,
help the
organization of a
paper. Use
them at
to help
your reader
follow your
Population and Technological Changes. One of the biggest changes, as seen in
nineteenth century America’s census reports, is the dramatic increase in population. The
1820 census reported that over 10 million people were living in America; of those 10
million, over 2 million were engaged in agriculture. Ten years prior to that, the 1810
census reported over 7 million people were living in the states; there was no category for
people engaged in agriculture. In this ten-year time span, then, agriculture experienced
significant improvements and changes that enhanced its importance in American life.
One of these improvements was the developments of canals and steamboats,
which allowed farmers to “sell what has previously been unsalable [sic]” and resulted in a
“substantial increase in [a farmer’s] ability to earn income” (Danhof 5). This
If there is a
or spelling
error in the
text you
are citing,
type the
quote as it
Follow the
quote with
Angeli 3
improvement allowed the relations between the rural and urban populations to strengthen,
resulting in an increase in trade. The urban population (defined as having over 2,500
inhabitants) in the northern states increased rapidly after 1820.1 This increase
accompanied the decrease in rural populations, as farmers who “preferred trade,
transportation, or ‘tinkering’” to the tasks of tending to crops and animals found great
opportunities in the city (Danhof 7). Trade and transportation thus began to influence
occur after
the quote
but before
the period.
name/s go
before the
with no
comma in
farming life significantly. Before 1820, the rural community accounted for eighty percent
of consumption of farmers’ goods (Hurt 127). With the improvements in transportation,
twenty-five percent of farmers’ products were sold for commercial gain, and by 1825,
farming “became a business rather than a way of life” (128). This business required
farmers to specialize their production and caused most farmers to give “less attention to
the production of surplus commodities like wheat, tobacco, pork, or beef” (128). The
increase in specialization encouraged some farmers to turn to technology to increase their
production and capitalize on commercial markets (172).
The technology farmers used around 1820 was developed from three main
sources: Europe, coastal Indian tribes in America, and domestic modifications made from
the first two sources’ technologies. Through time, technology improved, and while some
farmers clung to their time-tested technologies, others were eager to find alternatives to
these technologies. These farmers often turned to current developments in Great Britain
and received word of their technological improvements through firsthand knowledge by
should be
doublespaced and
in size 12
Times New
talking with immigrants and travelers. Farmers also began planning and conducting
experiments, and although they lacked a truly scientific approach, these farmers engaged
in experiments to obtain results and learn from the results.2 Agricultural organizations
to explain a
point in
your paper
that does
not quite
fit in with
the rest of
Insert the
after the
phrase or
clause to
which it
Angeli 4
were then formed to “encourage . . . experimentation, hear reports, observe results, and
If you
words from
the original
insert three
with a
and after
each one.
exchange critical comments” (Danhof 53). Thus, new knowledge was transmitted orally
from farmer to farmer, immigrant to farmer, and traveler to farmer, which could result in
the miscommunication of this new scientific knowledge. Therefore, developments were
made for knowledge to be transmitted and recorded in a more permanent, credible way:
by print.
The Distribution of New Knowledge. Before 1820 and prior to the new knowledge
farmers were creating, farmers who wanted print information about agriculture had their
have these
elements: a
transition, a
and a brief
Notice how
begins with
a transition.
The topic
follows the
and it tells
what the
is about.
quotes are
used to
this topic
choice of agricultural almanacs and even local newspapers to receive information
(Danhof 54). After 1820, however, agricultural writing took more forms than almanacs
and unify
Notice how
ends with a
mention of
sources and
the next
begins with
of print
and newspapers. From 1820 to 1870, agricultural periodicals were responsible for
spreading new knowledge among farmers. In his published dissertation The American
Agricultural Press 1819-1860, Albert Lowther Demaree presents a “description of the
general content of [agricultural journals]” (xi). These journals began in 1819 and were
written for farmers, with topics devoted to “farming, stock raising, [and] horticulture”
(12). The suggested “birthdate” of American agricultural journalism is April 2, 1819
when John S. Skinner published his periodical American Farmer in Baltimore. Demaree
writes that Skinner’s periodical was the “first continuous, successful agricultural
periodical in the United States” and “served as a model for hundreds of journals that
succeeded it” (19). In the midst of the development of the journal, farmers began writing
handbooks. Not much has been written on the handbooks’ history, aside from the fact that
C.M. Saxton & Co. in New York was the major handbook publisher. Despite the lack of
information about handbooks, and as can be seen in my discussion below, these
Titles of
films, etc.)
are now
instead of
Angeli 5
ends with a
lack . . .”,
transitioning to
the next
handbooks played a significant role in distributing knowledge among farmers and in
educating young farmers, as I now discuss.
Farming’s Influence on Education. One result of the newly circulating print information
was the “need for acquiring scientific information upon which could be based a rational
technology” that could “be substituted for the current diverse, empirical practices”
(Danhof 69). In his 1825 book Nature and Reason Harmonized in the Practice of
Husbandry, John Lorain begins his first chapter by stating that “[v]ery erroneous theories
have been propagated” resulting in faulty farming methods (1). His words here create a
framework for the rest of his book, as he offers his readers narratives of his own trials and
errors and even dismisses foreign, time-tested techniques farmers had held on to: “The
knowledge we have of that very ancient and numerous nation the Chinese, as well as the
very located habits and costumes of this very singular people, is in itself insufficient to
teach us . . .” (75). His book captures the call and need for scientific experiments to
develop new knowledge meant to be used in/on/with American soil, which reflects some
farmers’ thinking of the day.
By the 1860s, the need for this knowledge was strong enough to affect education.
John Nicholson anticipated this effect in 1820 in the “Experiments” section of his book
The Farmer’s Assistant; Being a Digest of All That Relates to Agriculture and the
Conducting of Rural Affairs; Alphabetically Arranged and Adapted for the United States:
Use block
are longer
than fourtyped lines.
Perhaps it would be well, if some institution were devised, and supported
at the expense of the State, which would be so organized as would tend
most effectually to produce a due degree of emulation among Farmers, by
rewards and honorary distinctions conferred by those who, by their
begin on a
new line,
are doublespaced, and
indented 1”
from the
margin. Do
not use
marks. The
name and
follows the
quote’s end
Angeli 6
successful experimental efforts and improvements, should render
themselves duly entitled to them.3 (92)
Part of Nicholson’s hope was realized in 1837 when Michigan established their state
university, specifying that “agriculture was to be an integral part of the curriculum”
(Danhof 71). Not much was accomplished, however, much to the dissatisfaction of
farmers, and in 1855, the state authorized a new college to be “devoted to agriculture and
to be independent of the university” (Danhof 71). The government became more involved
in the creation of agricultural universities in 1862 when President Lincoln passed the
Morrill Land Grant College Act, which begins with this phrase: “AN ACT Donating
Public Lands to the several States and Territories which may provide Colleges for the
Benefit of Agriculture and Mechanic Arts [sic].” The first agricultural colleges formed
before the
mark if the
is given
already in
under the act suffered from a lack of trained teachers and “an insufficient base of
knowledge,” and critics claimed that the new colleges did not meet the needs of farmers
(Hurt 193).
Congress addressed these problems with the then newly formed United States
Department of Agriculture (USDA). The USDA and Morrill Act worked together to form
“. . . State experiment stations and extension services . . . [that] added [to]
. . . localized research and education . . .” (Baker et al. 415). The USDA added to the
scientific and educational areas of the agricultural field in other ways by including
research as one of the organization’s “foundation stone” (367) and by including these
seven objectives:
(1) [C]ollecting, arranging, and publishing statistical and other useful
agricultural information; (2) introducing valuable plants and animals; (3)
If a source
has more
than three
use the
last name
followed by
“et al.”
Angeli 7
answering inquiries of farmers regarding agriculture; (4) testing
agricultural implements; (5) conducting chemical analyses of soils, grains,
fruits, plants, vegetables, and manures; (6) establishing a professorship of
botany and entomology; and (7) establishing an agricultural library and
museum. (Baker et al. 14)
These objectives were a response to farmers’ needs at the time, mainly to the need for
experiments, printed distribution of new farming knowledge, and education. Isaac
Newton, the first Commissioner of Agriculture, ensured these objectives would be
realized by stressing research and education with the ultimate goal of helping farmers
improve their operations (Hurt 190).
Before the USDA assisted in the circulation of knowledge, however, farmers
wrote about their own farming methods. This brings me to my next section in which I
examine three handbooks written by farmers and connect my observations of the texts
with the discussion of agricultural history I have presented above.
Note: Sections of this paper have been deleted to shorten the length of the paper
this is a Blevel
header, the
is not
The conclusion
“wraps up” what you
have been discussing
in your paper.
From examining Drown’s, Allen’s, and Crozier and Henderson’s handbooks in light of
nineteenth century agricultural history, I can say that science and education seem to have
had a strong influence on how and why these handbooks were written. The authors’ ethos
is created by how they align themselves as farmers with science and education either by
supporting or by criticizing them. Regardless of their stance, the authors needed to create
an ethos to gain an audience, and they did this by including tables of information,
illustrations of animals and buildings, reasons for educational reform, and pieces of
Angeli 8
advice to young farmers in their texts. It would be interesting to see if other farming
handbooks of the same century also convey a similar ethos concerning science and
education in agriculture. Recovering more handbooks in this way could lead to a better,
more complete understanding of farming education, science’s role in farming and
education, and perhaps even an understanding of the rhetoric of farming handbooks in the
nineteenth century.
Use endnotes to explain a point in
your paper that does not quite fit
in with the rest of the paragraph.
Avoid lengthy discussions in the
endnote entries.
Angeli 9
Center the title “Notes,”
using 12-point Times
New Roman font.
1. Danhof includes “Delaware, Maryland, all states north of the Potomac and
begin on a
new page
after the
paper but
before the
Doublespace all
entries, and
indent each
entry 0.5”
from the
Ohio rivers, Missouri, and states to its north” when referring to the northern states (11).
2. For the purposes of this paper, “science” is defined as it was in nineteenth
century agriculture: conducting experiments and engaging in research.
3. Please note that any direct quotes from the nineteenth century texts are written
in their original form, which may contain grammar mistakes according to twenty-first
century grammar rules.
The Works
Cited page
begins on a
new page.
Center the
title “Works
bolding, or
italicizing it.
If there is
only one
entry, title
this page
The Works Cited
page is a list of
all the sources
cited in your
Angeli 10
Works Cited
Allen, R.L. The American Farm Book; or Compend of American Agriculture; Being a
Practical Treatise on Soils, Manures, Draining, Irrigation, Grasses, Grain,
Roots, Fruits, Cotton, Tobacco, Sugar Cane, Rice, and Every Staple Product of
the United States with the Best Methods of Planting, Cultivating, and Preparation
for Market. New York: Saxton, 1849. Print.
MLA now
requires all
sources to
have a
marker. For
receive the
after the
Baker, Gladys L., Wayne D. Rasmussen, Vivian Wiser, and Jane M. Porter. Century of
Service: The First 100 Years of the United States Department of Agriculture.
[Federal Government], 1996. Print.
MLA no
URLs in the
you must
before the
date of
access in
the entry.
This serves
as the
Danhof, Clarence H. Change in Agriculture: The Northern United States, 1820-1870.
Cambridge, MA: Harvard UP, 1969. Print.
Demaree, Albert Lowther. The American Agricultural Press 1819-1860. New York:
Columbia UP, 1941. Print.
Drown, William and Solomon Drown. Compendium of Agriculture or the Farmer’s
Guide, in the Most Essential Parts of Husbandry and Gardening; Compiled from
the Best American and European Publications, and the Unwritten Opinions of
Experienced Cultivators. Providence, RI: Field, 1824. Print.
“Historical Census Browser.” University of Virginia Library. 2007. Web. 6 Dec. 2008.
Hurt, R. Douglas. American Agriculture: A Brief History. Ames, IA: Iowa State UP,
1994. Print.
Lorain, John. Nature and Reason Harmonized in the Practice of Husbandry.
Philadelphia: Carey, 1825. Print.
Morrill Land Grant Act of 1862. Prairie View A&M. 2003. Web. 6 Dec. 2008.
If a print
does not
list a
and you
can infer
who the
publisher is,
place the
name in
Angeli 11
Nicholson, John. The Farmer’s Assistant; Being a Digest of All That Relates to
Agriculture and the Conducting of Rural Affairs; Alphabetically Arranged and
Adapted for the United States. [Philadelphia]: Warner, 1820. Print.
Bartlett 1
Danielle Bartlett
Dr. Melissa Coakley
PHIL 202
29 May 2021
Theory of Evolution by Natural Selection
The scientific theory that I will be researching is Charles Darwin’s theory of Evolution by
Natural selection. Since he published his first book in 1859 a lot of evidence has come about to
prove that this theory is correct. Evolution can be proven through fossils, biological and genetic
evidence. Over time technology has been able to help us study further but during Darwin’s time
he used fossils and different variations of species in different locations to help further his study.
In my paper I am going to talk about why Darwin was right, how he came about his theory and
how he revolutionized not just evolutionary biology but philosophy as well. Evolution is pretty
much a proven fact nowadays, but it is important to show how it came about. It wasn’t an easy
time for Charles Darwin to publish his book, there have been many theories about evolution from
other scientists, but Darwin was able to use observable evidence to help support his theory that
answered questions biologists couldn’t. In my paper I will argue why Darwin is correct, through
his own evidence and evidence found later that helps defend the theory. I will dig deeper into his
evidence and how he came about it. On top of how it went for or against different philosophical
theories. They call Charles Darwin the father of evolutionary theory and I will explain how he
created the new subcategory. Evolutionary biology and Evolutionary Theory will not be separate
in my argument. I will correlate each founding evidence with the change of the philosophical
theory. My hope for this paper is to find out how Darwin came up with this theory, through his
Bartlett 2
own evidence and others, what this evidence has helped proved and how it revolutionized
evolutionary biology and evolutionary theory. I will be able to defend this theory through
Darwin’s own evidence and evidence from other scientists that came after him.
Annotated Bibliography
“Evidence for Evolution (Article).” Khan Academy, Khan Academy,
This article has a complete breakdown of Charles Darwin’s theory of Evolution by Natural
Selection. It also states how different forms of evidence helps validate this theory. I will
use this article to help define the theory as well as use the evidence described to help
support my argument.
Ruse, Michael, and Michael Ruse. Charles Darwin, John Wiley & Sons, Incorporated, 2008.
ProQuest Ebook Central,
This book helps understand how Charles Darwin is labeled the father of evolutionary
It discusses how Darwin answered different philosiphical questions as well. I will use this book
to help point out the philosophical points of Darwin’s’ theory and how it
philosophy as well.
Sloan, Phillip, “Darwin: From Origin of Species to Descent of Man”, The Stanford Encyclopedia
of Philosophy (Summer 2019 Edition), Edward N. Zalta (ed.),
Bartlett 3
This article is a more in-depth view of Darwin’s theory and how he came about it. It gives
a historical view of his ideas and where they came about. It also goes over issues with his
theory to help analyze why certain people had issues with it. I will use this article to help
give further evidence of his theory and how it came about.
Thagard, P., Findlay, S. Getting to Darwin: Obstacles to Accepting Evolution by Natural
Selection. Sci & Educ 19, 625–636 (2010).
This article goes over how the theory had issues when Darwin first published his book
why there were so many issues. This will my part of defending his theory and
philosophical obstacle that Darwin went through for his theory to get
describing the
Witting, Lars. A General Theory of Evolution: by Means of Selection by Density Dependent
Competitive Interactions. Peregrine Publisher, 1997.
This book goes over the classical theory of evolution and talks about the other theories of
evolution before and during Darwin’s time as well. This will help give evidence of where
Charles Darwin received ideas to form his theory. It also goes over natural selection
through basic relations, fitness and selection. I will use facts from this book to help further
prove evidence to support my argument with the evidence proven from Darwin’s time and

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