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The discussion of Richard Goldschmidt and his saltational model of evolution is largely copied (without credit) from an essay by "creationist anatomist" David Menton. Goldschmidt's ideas were widely criticized when first publicized, and their reputation has not improved with time. There's no particular reason to cover them in a modern biology textbook at all.
It is difficult to be sure why Explore Evolution invests a full page in a discussion of Richard Goldschmidt's ideas. His work was rejected by biologists of his own day, and age has not improved his reputation. A recent assessment of his influence on modern biology concluded:
Richard Goldschmidt's research on homeotic mutants is not significant because it was right or paradigmatic. It is significant because it represents one of the first serious efforts to integrate genetics, development, and evolution. As such, Goldschmidt's research reveals the great difficulty of balancing the different contributors to a developmental evolutionary genetics. Consider the major flaws with his different models of macroevolution. Evolution by systemic mutations placed too much emphasis on a model of genetic structure which could not be confirmed or fully integrated with a model of gene action (not every inversion or chromosomal repatterning produces a phenotypic effect). Evolution by developmental macromutations placed too much faith in the ability of developmental processes to create functioning new species from major genetic changes. Goldschmidt needed [Sewall] Wright's counsel to provide a reasonable evolutionary dynamics for major mutations, which in turn made speciation by macromutation a possibility.
In short, Goldschmidt's erroneous ideas spurred other scientists to consider ideas which did ultimately improve our understanding of evolution. The insight that mutations could have both large and small effects influenced Sewall Wright's "shifting balance" evolutionary model — a major component of modern population genetics. Similarly, evolutionary biologist Stephen Jay Gould wrote an essay on the "Return of the Hopeful Monster," in which he rejected most of Goldschmidt's actual argument, but identified useful insights which could guide modern researchers:
The element that Gould borrowed from Goldschmidt was not the erroneous view of genetics, nor Goldschmidt's model of how large morphological changes could be produced in that bogus genetic scheme. The connection between the sort of developmental biology research Gould describes and Goldschmidt's work is negligible. Hence Dietrich's observation above that the significance of Goldschmidt's work not being that "it was right or paradigmatic."
Neither Goldschmidt nor "hopeful monsters" is mentioned in the index to any of the most common college or high school biology textbooks. Evolutionary biology textbooks mention him only in passing, to note that his ideas were not and are not generally accepted. Ridley's Evolution merely observes that Ernst Mayr's arguments in favor of the Modern Synthesis won out against Goldschmidt's suggestions, and Futuyma rightly noting that Goldschmidt's genetic ideas "have been entirely repudiated by modern geneticists" and that his "saltationism was rejected in favor of gradual change" (even the changes Gould discusses above would be gradual in this sense). The lesson Futuyma draws from the coalescence of the Modern Synthesis, and the consequent rejection of ideas like Goldschmidt's, is that "the rejection of false ideas is an important part of the progress in science" (Futuyma, D., 1998, Evolutionary Biology, Sinauer Associates, Inc.:Sunderland, MA. p. 25).
In the perverted view of science promulgated by Explore Evolution, bad ideas never die. While there might be pedagogical value in leading students on a discussion of the flaws in Goldschmidt's ideas and the advantages of the Modern Synthesis, there is no value in the approach Explore Evolution takes. Simply tossing out a bad idea as if it were generally accepted today is unethical. Presenting an incomplete account of Goldschmidt, and leaving the impression that biologists today rely on his work, simply leaves students with the wrong impression.
An even worse impression will be left if students realize that the first paragraphs of Explore Evolution's page about Goldschmidt are copied without credit from another author. David Menton wrote those words for a young earth creationist group called the Missouri Association for Creation. Menton wrote:
Compare this to the material in Explore Evolution (identical passages bolded, paraphrases in italics):
Teachers know that it is not appropriate to quote so much material from a source without proper credit. Paraphrasing a few passages and correcting some grammatical errors does not excuse the failure to identify the source. Not only does this passage misinform students about the current state of the science, distract from real science, and repeat creationist canards, it is also built on a serious ethical lapse. Students should not be sent the message that plagiarism is appropriate.