Lamarckian family tree

Possibilities of Lamarckian evolution,
learning changing genes – educational revolution.
I trace my intellect through historic influences,
charting many rivers to find mind’s rivers confluences.


Lamarckian evolution refers to soft inheritance: the idea that there can be heritability of acquired characteristics. While Darwin gave some, but not total, credence to Lamarck’s ideas, Mendelian genetics saw the abandonment of the theory. However, more recently studies in epigenetics indicate that it might be possible for acquired behavioural traits to be inherited. With this in mind, I’ve partially charted my Lamarkian family tree, which includes mainly the good influences, but with any family there is always the odd black sheep! I intended this as a list poem, but it has evolved into a branch unpoem. Have a go chart your own!

Regarding my comment about Dawkins, here is a link to a recent study that shows that even physical scientists have a teleological tendency (belief in a “purpose” to things) when under cognitive constraints (time pressure), and that this might be a default that has implications for science and culture.


5 thoughts on “Lamarckian family tree

    • 😊 I had to look Matthew Fox up on Wikipedia – he sounds really interesting. I reluctantly left off Harper Lee and Rohinton Mistry from novelists (as being one book influences rather than a whole body of work).

  1. Conceptually fantastic, I’ve GOT to do mine! A branch unpoem – wtf (self explanatory I expect but what a curious and lovely term). I’ll try to think of a unique form for mine too. This has excited me – thank you for today’s lesson.

    • Mike, you are infectious with your enthusiasm: a comment from you and I’m off writing another poem again! And I’d love to see your own creation.

      Branch unpoem: I was going to write a standard “list poem” using the above opening, but then I realized it was too linear, when I could see I needed branches, so it was then going to be a branch poem (a list poem with sections going left to right). But, it still seemed too linear and so I jumped to using a mind map app to sketch it. I then felt I had what I wanted, but it wasn’t exactly a “traditional” poem (even by free verse standards), and so it is a branch unpoem! Having said that I think it’s the poetic mind/thought that defines something as a poem, rather than the form…but for those who think “poems must rhyme”, I’ll have them pulling their hair out 😊

      • Thanks for the comprehensive explanation – it makes perfect sense. I called you an inventor once and I’m now paying myself the compliment of being right first time.

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