28 Pages

The British School: Caiman, Cannon, and Manton and their effect on carcinology in the English speaking world

WithFrederick R. Schram

Three people in 20th century Britain dominate crustacean studies: William Thomas Caiman, Herbert Graham Cannon and Sidnie Milana Manton. Caiman, Cannon, and Manton had profound impacts on carcinology. The main opposition to the idea of evolution by natural selection came from Darwin’s contemporary, Richard Owen, founder of the British Museum of Natural History. Idealists and romantics flourished in the late 19th century. The natural theologians and religious transcendentalists focused on the importance of subjective experience over rational empiricism. Caiman continued his interests in syncarids for the rest of his career, publishing another nine papers on the subject up until 1934. In all of these, he treated fossils as integral elements in the analysis of living forms and vice-versa, continued his careful attention to detail, and insisted that animals be looked at as integrated wholes.