Tuesday, December 27, 2016

CFP for special issue on the Extended Synthesis

For a Special Issue of the journal Biosemiotics: Semiotic Aspects of the Extended Synthesis

The journal Biosemiotics (Springer) is preparing a special issue on “Semiotic Aspects of the Extended Synthesis” guest-edited by Andrew M. Winters. While the field of biosemiotics is concerned with the origin and development of natural semiotic systems, much of the discussion has been framed in terms of Darwinian frameworks, including the Modern Synthesis. Non-Darwinian views were held by Uexküll and, more recently, Darwinian views have been supplemented in important ways by Kull, Hoffmeyer, and Barbieri. Many biological phenomena, such as transgenerational epigenetic inheritance, have yet to be explained in terms of these evolutionary theories. In the 1980s, biologists aimed to develop an Extended Synthesis to build upon and replace parts of the Modern Synthesis to better accommodate and explain these observed phenomenon. Given recent discussions of the Extended Synthesis, this Special Issue aims to understand the extent to which biosemiotics is commensurate with burgeoning developments in contemporary biology by exploring how core features of biosemiotics are either consistent or at odds with those accommodated by the Extended Synthesis.  

The Special Issue of “Semiotic Aspects of the Extended Synthesis” welcomes papers that analyze specific semiotic processes within the Extended Synthesis, assess the general tenability of understanding biosemiotics in terms of the Extended Synthesis, or explore the relationship between biosemiotics and the Extended Synthesis. Papers in the form of theoretical works, empirical findings, or metatheoretical considerations are welcome.  

Some potential questions to be explored in this Special Issue include
How does the extended synthesis differ from Darwinian evolution and the modern synthesis in its impact on biosemiotics? 
Does niche construction involve the construction of signs? 
How does semiotics contribute to evolutionary-developmental biology? 
Do signs further enhance plasticity and accommodation? 
Are signs replicable? 
Do signs and semiotic systems evolve? 
Are signs capable of emerging and contributing to multilevel selection? 
To what extent are candidate signs (e.g., genes) involved in genomic evolution? 

Technical Details and Timeline:
Paper Proposals (Title and Abstract) Due January 31st, 2017
Notification of Acceptance February 28th, 2017 
Paper Submissions Due September 30th, 2017
Final Drafts Due January 31st, 2018
Electronic Publication February 2018
Print Version Issue #2 August 2018
Papers should be no more than 7,000 words (minus abstract and references)
Instructions for authors can be found here
Submit abstracts and contact the editor at andrew.winters@sru.edu

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