Tuesday, April 14, 2015

John Thomas Gulick

John Thomas Gulick did the first modern evolutionary study on Hawaiian land snails. He was a missionary and son of a Hawaiʻi missionary.   A collector of land snails since his teen years, he became a convert to evolutionary thinking even before reading On the Origin of Species (by Darwin.)

Gulick was among the first to recognize the critical role for geographical separation in the diversification of ecologically similar Hawaiian land snails. His ideas were discussed by Darwin, as well as leaders in the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis who saw an important role for geographical isolation in speciation.  Gulick extended his ideas to societal evolution in human beings.

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