David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Biology and Philosophy 9 (1):75-84 (1994)
Altruistic behavior is often regarded as sociobiology''s most central theoretical problem, but is it? Altruism in biology, bioaltruism, has many meanings, which can be grouped into two categories. The first I will callcommon bioaltruism. It is primarily of ethological relevance. The second,evolutionary bioaltruism, is a special category in evolutionary respects in that it may indeed pose a problem for evolutionary theory. These categories are logically independent. Moreover, both of them are logically different from altruism in its everyday psychological or moral sense. Sociobiological examples of bioaltruistic behavior concern bioaltruism in the first sense only, so the theoretical problem altruism is supposed to pose, is indeed nothing but a theoretical problem and the bioaltruism that actually occurs has no evolutionary relevance. Nevertheless, evolutionary theory is relevant to our understanding of the possibility of common bioaltruism, and that possibility — even though bioaltruism is conceptually different from ethical altruism — is relevant for ethicists: it sheds light on what we can ask people to do or not to do.
|Keywords||Altruism ethics ethology evolution sociobiology|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
John Beatty (1984). Chance and Natural Selection. Philosophy of Science 51 (2):183-211.
Elliott Sober (1993). Evolutionary Altruism, Psychological Egoism, and Morality: Disentangling the Phenotypes. In Matthew Nitecki & Doris Nitecki (eds.), Evolutionary Ethics. Suny Press. 199--216.
Elliott Sober (1992). The Evolution of Altruism: Correlation, Cost, and Benefit. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 7 (2):177-187.
Elliott Sober (1988). What is Evolutionary Altruism? In B. Linsky & M. Mathen (eds.), New Essays on Philosophy and Biology (Canadian Journal of Philosophy Supp. Vol. 14). University of Calgary Press. 75.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Alejandro Rosas (2004). Mind Reading, Deception and the Evolution of Kantian Moral Agents. Journal for the Theory of Social Behaviour 34 (2):127–139.
Stephen G. Morris (2005). Identifying the Explanatory Weakness of Strong Altruism: The Needle in the `Haystack Model'. Philosophy of Science 72 (5):1124-1134.
Scott Woodcock & Joseph Heath (2002). The Robustness of Altruism as an Evolutionary Strategy. Biology and Philosophy 17 (4):567-590.
James A. van Slyke (2010). Cognitive and Evolutionary Factors in the Emergence of Human Altruism. Zygon 45 (4):841-859.
Yakov Shapiro & Glen O. Gabbard (1994). A Reconsideration of Altruism From an Evolutionary and Psychodynamic Perspective. Ethics and Behavior 4 (1):23 – 42.
John S. Brunero (2002). Evolution, Altruism and "Internal Reward" Explanations. Philosophical Forum 33 (4):413–424.
David Sloan Wilson (1992). On the Relationship Between Evolutionary and Psychological Definitions of Altruism and Selfishness. Biology and Philosophy 7 (1):61-68.
Dale Jamieson (2002). Sober and Wilson on Psychological Altruism. [REVIEW] Philosophy and Phenomenological Research 65 (3):702–710.
Alan carter (2005). Evolution and the Problem of Altruism. Philosophical Studies 123 (3):213-230.
Added to index2009-01-28
Total downloads4 ( #281,376 of 1,410,157 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #155,015 of 1,410,157 )
How can I increase my downloads?