The Solitary Self: Darwin and the Selfish Gene - Heretics (Paperback)

by Mary Midgley

Format: Paperback 176 pages

In stock

Usually despatched within 24 hours

£13.99

Delivered FREE
in the UK

Renowned philosopher Mary Midgley explores the nature of our moral constitution to challenge the view that reduces human motivation to self-interest. Midgley argues cogently and convincingly that simple, one-sided accounts of human motives, such as the 'selfish gene' tendency in recent neo-Darwinian thought, may be illuminating but are always unrealistic. Such neatness, she shows, cannot be imposed on human psychology. She returns to Darwin's original writings to show how the reductive individualism which is now presented as Darwinism does not derive from Darwin but from a wider, Hobbesian tradition in Enlightenment thinking. She reveals the selfish gene hypothesis as a cultural accretion that is just not seen in nature. Heroic independence is not a realistic aim for Homo sapiens. We are, as Darwin saw, earthly organisms, framed to interact constantly with one another and with the complex ecosystems of which we are a tiny part. For us, bonds are not just restraints but also lifelines.

Book details

Published
20/09/2010

Publisher
Acumen Publishing Ltd

ISBN
9781844652532


Other books by this author See all titles

 

Customers who bought this title, also bought...

The prices displayed are for website purchases only, and may differ to the prices in Waterstones shops.