Print version ISSN 0101-3173
MARTINS, Lilian Al-Chueyr Pereira and MARTINS, Roberto de Andrade. Lamarck's method. Trans/Form/Ação [online]. 1996, vol.19, pp. 115-140. ISSN 0101-3173. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S0101-31731996000100008.
This paper studies Lamarck's scientific method both from the point of view of his methodological discourse and according to his scientific praxis. Lamarck's methodology is compared to Condillac's as well as to that of the idéologues - a group in which Lamarck is usually included. The analysis of this paper shows that Lamarck's methodological discourse is very similar to Condillac's, but his scientific praxis does not follow this view. Instead of following an empiricist approach, Lamarck's work is grounded upon general metaphysical principles concerning nature. Thus, from the ideologues's point of view, Lamarck's work should have been rejected -and that is what really happened - as being a mere metaphysical system (systèmej - in the pejorative sense employed by Condillac's followers. However, the present work argues that this is in fact an important and innovative aspect of Lamarck's work and that it lead to the emergence of modern evolutionism.
Keywords : Lamarck; Condillac; empirism; scientific method; evolution; French philosophy -19th. century; ideologues.