Review of Metaphysics 16 (2):394-394 (1962)

That mankind's evolution is through genetics and cultural acquisition together, but not through either alone, is the thesis of these interesting Silliman lectures. Dobzhansky examines evolutionary theories from Darwinism to Social Darwinism to show the extent to which genetic inheritance requires certain environmental conditions, and vice versa, for mankind to evolve as it has. He also traces the origin of culture relative to man's genetic make-up, and considers the future impact of civilization, e.g., population expansion, the control of disease instead of the genetic death of those susceptible, etc. The book is well documented and offers an excellent assessment of scientific findings; on the philosophic side, Dobzhansky approves as "a ray of hope," though "patently undemonstrable by scientifically established facts," Teilhard de Chardin's thesis that evolution is going toward "a harmonized collectivity of consciousnesses, equivalent to a kind of superconsciousness."--R. C. N.
Keywords Catholic Tradition  Contemporary Philosophy  General Interest
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ISBN(s) 0034-6632
DOI revmetaph1962162205
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