Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C: Studies in History and Philosophy of Biological and Biomedical Sciences 37 (1):136-150 (2006)
In A Darwinian left Peter Singer aims to reconcile Darwinian theory with left wing politics, using evolutionary game theory and in particular a model proposed by Robert Axelrod, which shows that cooperation can be an evolutionarily successful strategy. In this paper I will show that whilst Axelrod’s model can give support to a kind of left wing politics, it is not the kind that Singer himself envisages. In fact, it is shown that there are insurmountable problems for the idea of increasing Axelrodian cooperation within a welfare state. My surprising conclusion will be that a Darwinian left worthy of the name would be anarchistic. Ó 2005 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
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