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grad•u•al•ism



Pronunciation: (graj'OO-u-liz"um) [key]
n.
1. the principle or policy of achieving some goal by gradual steps rather than by drastic change.
2. Philos.a theory maintaining that two seemingly conflicting notions are not radically opposed, but are related by others partaking in varying degrees of the character of both.
3. Biol.a tenet in evolutionary theory maintaining that species evolve slowly and continuously over long periods of geological time. Cf. punctuated equilibrium.

Random House Unabridged Dictionary, Copyright © 1997, by Random House, Inc., on Infoplease.

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