Darwin's moral lapse

National Forum:22-24 (1986)
  Copy   BIBTEX


One reason Darwin's letters and journals are such a pleasure to read is that in them we meet a modest, decent man who commands our respect, and even our affection. He was not only a great scientist; he was an exemplary human being. Yet there was one famous episode in Darwin's life in which he and his friends acted badly. Perhaps because he was so admirable a man, historians have tended to gloss over this moral lapse, sometimes even to the point of misrepresenting the facts. I refer, of course, to the celebrated episode involving Alfred Russel Wallace, who "scooped" Darwin by independently discovering the theory of natural selection. The standard accounts suggest that Darwin and his friends treated Wallace honorably. A closer look at what happened leaves a different impression: it is a lamentable story of human weakness, in which some good men treated another good man disgracefully.



    Upload a copy of this work     Papers currently archived: 91,202

External links

Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server

Through your library

Similar books and articles


Added to PP

31 (#486,401)

6 months
6 (#417,196)

Historical graph of downloads
How can I increase my downloads?

Citations of this work

No citations found.

Add more citations

References found in this work

No references found.

Add more references