A multiple-case study of four hospital ethics committees in Canada was conducted and data collected included interviews with key informants, observation of committee meetings and ethics-related hospital documents, such as policies and committee minutes. We compared the hospital committees in terms of their structure, functioning and perceptions of key informants and found variation in the dimensions of empowerment, organizational culture of ethics, breadth of ethics mandate, achievements, dynamism, and expertise.
Much of the literature on clinical ethical conflict has been specific to a specialty area or a particular patient group, as well as to a single profession. This study identifies themes of hospital nurses’ and physicians’ clinical ethical conflicts that cut across the spectrum of clinical specialty areas, and compares the themes identified by nurses with those identified by physicians. We interviewed 34 clinical nurses, 10 nurse managers and 31 physicians working at four different Canadian hospitals as part of a (...) larger study on clinical ethics committees and nurses’ and physicians’ use of these committees. We describe nine themes of clinical ethical conflict that were common to both hospital nurses and physicians, and three themes that were specific to physicians. Following this, we suggest reasons for differences in nurses’ and physicians’ ethical conflicts and discuss implications for practice and research. (shrink)
French cultural theorist and urbanist Paul Virilio is best known for his writings on media, technology, and architecture. Gathered here in _A Winter’s Journey _are four remarkable conversations in which Virilio and architectural writer Marianne Brausch look at a twentieth century characterized by enormous technological acceleration and by technocultural accidents of barbarism and horror. The dialogues in _A Winter_’_s Journey—_structured loosely around the dates 1940, 1950, 1960, and 1980—chart Virilio’s intimate intellectual biography, from his childhood lived against the unstable (...) backdrop of a heavily bombed, wartime Nantes to maturity in a crisis space that is neither entirely militarized nor yet fully civilian, but somewhere between the two. In the course of these conversations, Virilio and Brausch ultimately find hope that in understanding the events of the last century and the cultural responses spawned by them, we can create a more humane era that is more adept at handling the transformations of its technology and culture. _A Winter’s Journey _is a revealing and engaging look into the intellectual life and ideas of one of the most influential theorists of contemporary civilization. (shrink)
Ideas about heredity and evolution are undergoing a revolutionary change. New findings in molecular biology challenge the gene-centered version of Darwinian theory according to which adaptation occurs only through natural selection of chance DNA variations. In Evolution in Four Dimensions, Eva Jablonka and Marion Lamb argue that there is more to heredity than genes. They trace four "dimensions" in evolution -- four inheritance systems that play a role in evolution: genetic, epigenetic, behavioral, and symbolic. These systems, they argue, can (...) all provide variations on which natural selection can act. Evolution in Four Dimensions offers a richer, more complex view of evolution than the gene-based, one-dimensional view held by many today. The new synthesis advanced by Jablonka and Lamb makes clear that induced and acquired changes also play a role in evolution.After discussing each of the four inheritance systems in detail, Jablonka and Lamb "put Humpty Dumpty together again" by showing how all of these systems interact. They consider how each may have originated and guided evolutionary history and they discuss the social and philosophical implications of the four-dimensional view of evolution. Each chapter ends with a dialogue in which the authors engage the contrarieties of the fictional "I.M.," or Ifcha Mistabra -- Aramaic for "the opposite conjecture" -- refining their arguments against I.M.'s vigorous counterarguments. The lucid and accessible text is accompanied by artist-physician Anna Zeligowski's lively drawings, which humorously and effectively illustrate the authors' points. (shrink)
'...a challenging and useful book, both because it provokes a careful scrutiny of one's own basic ideas regarding evolutionary theory, and because it cuts across so many biological disciplines.' -The Quarterly Review of Biology 'In my view, this work exemplifies Theoretical Biology at its best...here is rampant speculation that is consistently based on cautious reasoning from the available data. Even more refreshing is the absence of sloganeering, grandstanding, and 'isms'.' -Biology and Philosophy 'Epigenetics is fundamental to understanding both development and (...) gene expression, and not surprisingly, evolutionary biologists have long been fascinated with its proper place in evolutionary theory...Enter Jablonka and Lamb, who provide a thoughtful review of the recent molecular literature and suggest a number of potential consequences.' -EvolutionSince first publication of this controversial book, much of the initial opposition to the ideas it contained has been replaced by a general, although often grudging, acceptance of them. Advances in knowledge, especially at the molecular level, have enhanced general awareness and interest in epigenetics and the evolution of systems that store and transmit information and put any of the authors' speculations on a more solid basis. This paperback edition contains a new Preface that sets out the major changes in the scientific world and in the authors' own thinking that have occurred since the book was published. A new Appendix provides a selected bibliography of the many books and articles about epigenetic inheritance and its role in evolution that have appeared since first publication. (shrink)
During the last decades several tools have been developed to anticipate the future impact of new and emerging technologies. Many of these focus on ‘hard,’ quantifiable impacts, investigating how novel technologies may affect health, environment and safety. Much less attention is paid to what might be called ‘soft’ impacts: the way technology influences, for example, the distribution of social roles and responsibilities, moral norms and values, or identities. Several types of technology assessment and of scenario studies can be used to (...) anticipate such soft impacts. We argue, however, that these methods do not recognize the dynamic character of morality and its interaction with technology. As a result, they miss an important opportunity to broaden the scope of social and political deliberation on new and emerging technologies.In this paper we outline a framework for building scenarios that enhance the techno-moral imagination by anticipating how technology, morality and their interaction might evolve. To show what kind of product might result from this framework, a scenario is presented as an exemplar. This scenario focuses on developments in biomedical nanotechnology and the moral regime of experimenting with human beings. Finally, the merits and limitations of our framework and the resulting type of scenarios are discussed. (shrink)
This paper examines the development of the concept of brain death and of the criteria necessary for its recognition. Competing formulations of brain death are assessed and the case for a ‘brainstem’ concept of death is argued. Attention is finally drawn to some of the ethical issues raised by the use of neurological criteria in the diagnosis of human death.
Background Since the enactment of the euthanasia law in the Netherlands, there has been a lively public debate on assisted dying that may influence the way patients talk about euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide with their physicians and the way physicians experience the practice of EAS. Aim To show what developments physicians see in practice and how they perceive the influence of the public debate on the practice of EAS. Methods We conducted a secondary analysis of in-depth interviews with 28 Dutch (...) physicians who had experience with a complex case of EAS. Respondents were recruited both by the network of physicians working for SCEN as well as via a national questionnaire, wherein participating physicians could indicate their willingness to be interviewed. Results Three themes came up in analysing the interviews. First, the interviewed physicians experienced a change in what patients would expect from them: from a role as an involved caregiver to being the mere performer of EAS. Second, interviewees said that requests for EAS based on non-medical reasons came up more frequently and wondered if EAS was the right solution for these requests. Last, respondents had the impression that the standards of EAS are shifting and that the boundaries of the EAS regulation were stretched. Conclusions The perceived developments could make physicians less willing to consider a request for EAS. Our results also raise questions about the role of physicians and of EAS in society. (shrink)
Is the Miranda warning, which lets an accused know of the right to remain silent, more about procedural fairness or about the conventions of speech acts and silences? Do U.S. laws about Native Americans violate the preferred or traditional "silence" of the peoples whose religions and languages they aim to "protect" and "preserve"? In Just Silences, Marianne Constable draws on such examples to explore what is at stake in modern law: a potentially new silence as to justice.Grounding her claims (...) about modern law in rhetorical analyses of U.S. law and legal texts and locating those claims within the tradition of Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Foucault, Constable asks what we are to make of silences in modern law and justice. She shows how what she calls "sociolegal positivism" is more important than the natural law/positive law distinction for understanding modern law. Modern law is a social and sociological phenomenon, whose instrumental, power-oriented, sometimes violent nature raises serious doubts about the continued possibility of justice. She shows how particular views of language and speech are implicated in such law.But law--like language--has not always been positivist, empirical, or sociological, nor need it be. Constable examines possibilities of silence and proposes an alternative understanding of law--one that emerges in the calling, however silently, of words to justice. Profoundly insightful and fluently written, Just Silences suggests that justice today lies precariously in the silences of modern positive law. (shrink)
In this book, Marianne Moyaert develops a new interreligious appropriation of Paul Ricoeur’s hermeneutical philosophy. Viewed in context of his philosophical, anthropological, and ethical work, Ricoeur’s fragmentary reflections on the encounters between religions provide insights on global cooperation practices and religious identity concerns.
Do you want to make sure you · Don’t invest your money in the next Enron? · Don’t go to work for the next WorldCom right before the crash? · Identify and solve problems in your organization before they send it crashing to the ground? Marianne Jennings has spent a lifetime studying business ethics---and ethical failures. In demand nationwide as a speaker and analyst on business ethics, she takes her decades of findings and shows us in The Seven Signs (...) of Ethical Collapse the reasons that companies and nonprofits undergo ethical collapse, including: · Pressure to maintain numbers · Fear and silence · Young ’uns and a larger-than-life CEO · A weak board · Conflicts · Innovation like no other · Belief that goodness in some areas atones for wrongdoing in others Don’t watch the next accounting disaster take your hard-earned savings, or accept the perfect job only to find out your boss is cooking the books. If you’re just interested in understanding the (not-so) ethical underpinnings of business today, The Seven Signs of Ethical Collapse is both a must-have tool and a fascinating window into today’s business world. (shrink)
With disagreement, doubts, or ambiguous grounds in end–of-life decisions, doctors are advised to involve a clinical ethics committee. However, little has been published on doctors’ experiences with discussing an end-of-life decision in a CEC. As part of the quality assurance of this work, we wanted to find out if clinicians have benefited from discussing end-of-life decisions in CECs and why. We will disseminate some Norwegian doctors’ experiences when discussing end-of-life decisions in CECs, based on semi-structured interviews with fifteen Norwegian physicians (...) who had brought an end-of-life decision case to a CEC. Almost half of the cases involved conflicts with the patients’ relatives. In a majority of the cases, there was uncertainty about what would be the ethically preferable solution. Reasons for referring the case to the CEC were to get broader illumination of the case, to get perspective from people outside the team, to get advice, or to get moral backing on a decision already made. A great majority of the clinicians reported an overall positive experience with the CECs’ discussions. In cases where there was conflict, the clinicians reported less satisfaction with the CECs’ discussions. The study shows that most doctors who have used a CEC in an end-of-life decision find it useful to have ethical and/or legal aspects illuminated, and to have the dilemma scrutinized from a new perspective. A systematic discussion seems to be significant to the clinicians. (shrink)
In the advertising discourse of human genetic database projects, of genetic ancestry tracing companies, and in popular books on anthropological genetics, what I refer to as the anthropological gene and genome appear as documents of human history, by far surpassing the written record and oral history in scope and accuracy as archives of our past. How did macromolecules become "documents of human evolutionary history"? Historically, molecular anthropology, a term introduced by Emile Zuckerkandl in 1962 to characterize the study of primate (...) phylogeny and human evolution on the molecular level, asserted its claim to the privilege of interpretation regarding hominoid, hominid, and human phylogeny and evolution vis-à-vis other historical sciences such as evolutionary biology, physical anthropology, and paleoanthropology. This process will be discussed on the basis of three key conferences on primate classification and evolution that brought together exponents of the respective fields and that were held in approximately ten-years intervals between the early 1960s and the 1980s. I show how the anthropological gene and genome gained their status as the most fundamental, clean, and direct records of historical information, and how the prioritizing of these epistemic objects was part of a complex involving the objectivity of numbers, logic, and mathematics, the objectivity of machines and instruments, and the objectivity seen to reside in the epistemic objects themselves. (shrink)
This literature review of professionalism was prepared by San Jose State University graduate student Marianne Allison as a research committee project of the Mass Communication and Society Division, Association for Education in Journalism and Mass Communication. The project was prepared under the guidance of Professor Diana Stover Tillinghast. It reviews the literature on two approaches to professionalism in general and of the professionalism of journalists in particular: the ?structural?functionalist approach?; and the ?power approach.?; Traditional and recent discussions of the (...) nature of professionalism in occupational sociology are presented. Studies of the professionalism of journalists both in the United States and cross?culturally are critiqued. The paper suggests several areas of fruitful research, and contains an extensive bibliography. (shrink)
This study investigates whether addressees visually attend to speakers’ gestures in interaction and whether attention is modulated by changes in social setting and display size. We compare a live face-to-face setting to two video conditions. In all conditions, the face dominates as a fixation target and only a minority of gestures draw fixations. The social and size parameters affect gaze mainly when combined and in the opposite direction from the predicted with fewer gestures fixated on video than live. Gestural holds (...) and speakers’ gaze at their own gestures reliably attract addressees’ fixations in all conditions. The attraction force of holds is unaffected by changes in social and size parameters, suggesting a bottom-up response, whereas speaker-fixated gestures draw significantly less attention in both video conditions, suggesting a social effect for overt gaze-following and visual joint attention. The study provides and validates a video-based paradigm enabling further experimental but ecologically valid explorations of cross-modal information processing. (shrink)
This paper discusses the definition of argumentation as a means for persuading an audience on the acceptability of a thesis. It is argued that persuasion is a goal that relates more to the communicative situation, the type of interaction or the type of discourse, rather than to the argumentative nature of it. Departing from the analysis of a short conversational sequence between people who agree on an issue and nevertheless argue, I suggest that a definition of argumentation in terms of (...) persuasion fails to account for what people are actually doing in these situations. I propose instead that several functions may be assigned to argumentation when considering the context in which it is produced: a cognitive function (which helps participants to elaborate a position on the discussed issue), and an identifying function (which enables them to portray themselves through the expression and the justification of their opinion). In the case analyzed here, a third function to which the argumentative activity contributes can also be identified, namely the enhancing of the emotional tonality of the relationship between the participants. While it becomes clear from the discussion of this argumentative sequence that the participants do not seek to persuade each other or some third party, it is not suggested that argumentation never aims at persuading an audience, but rather that persuasion cannot be considered as a defining feature of argumentation. (shrink)
Although it is now generally acknowledged that new biomedical technologies often produce new definitions and sometimes even new concepts of disease, this observation is rarely used in research that anticipates potential ethical issues in emerging technologies. This article argues that it is useful to start with an analysis of implied concepts of disease when anticipating ethical issues of biomedical technologies. It shows, moreover, that it is possible to do so at an early stage, i.e. when a technology is only just (...) emerging. The specific case analysed here is that of ‘molecular medicine’. This group of emerging technologies combines a ‘cascade model’ of disease processes with a ‘personal pattern’ model of bodily functioning. Whereas the ethical implications of the first are partly familiar from earlier—albeit controversial—forms of preventive and predictive medicine, those of the second are quite novel and potentially far-reaching. (shrink)
References to publications written by women constitute a significantly larger proportion of citations in articles written by women than in articles written by men in the same subfields. Further, the difference between citation patterns of men and women authors increases as the proportion of women in the discipline decreases, showing that these women are doubly disadvantaged in accumulating citations. These results suggest that the problems of members of an out-group tend to be most serious when their numbers are small and (...) that they will find it increasingly easier to gain acceptance and recognition as their numbers increase. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that the distinction between epistemic privilege and epistemic authority is an important one for feminist epistemologists who are sympathetic to feminist standpoint theory. I argue that, while the first concept is elusive, the second is really the important one for a successful feminist standpoint project.
In this paper, we are interested in the effects of institutional context on public attitudes towards climate policies, where institutions are defined as the conventions, norms and formally sanctioned rules of any given society. Building on a 2014 survey experiment, we conducted thirty qualitative interviews with car-owners in Oslo, Norway, to investigate the ways in which institutional context and political-value orientation affect public attitudes towards emissions policies. One context highlighted individual rationality, emphasising the ways in which local pollution impacts the (...) individual citizen; the other highlighted social rationality, emphasising the wider significance of carbon emissions and global responsibility for climate change. We analysed the effects of these contexts on attitudes, finding that institutional context influenced individuals' perspectives as well as their attitudes towards climate policies. Groups with different value orientations differed in terms of their evaluations but not their interpretations of these contexts. (shrink)
In this article, I am concerned with the public engagements of Julian Huxley, Lancelot Hogben, and J. B. S. Haldane. I analyze how they used the new insights into the genetics of heredity to argue against any biological foundations for antidemocratic ideologies, be it Nazism, Stalinism, or the British laissez-faire and class system. The most striking fact—considering the abuse of biological knowledge they contested—is that these biologists presented genetics itself as inherently democratic. Arguing from genetics, they developed an understanding of (...) diversity that cuts across divisions of race, class, or gender. Human diversity rightly understood was advantageous for societal progress. Huxley, Hogben, and Haldane did not hold identical political ideals, but they all argued for democratic reforms and increased planning geared toward greater social equality, and they did so under the label of scientific humanism. Huxley took issue with the notion that evolutionary history does not carry any moral lessons for human societies. Rather than being its antithesis, evolution was the basis of human sociality. In fact, the entire future progress of individuals and communities toward a democratic world order needed to be founded on the cosmic principles of evolution—a process that had to be guided by the biological expert with a strong sense of social responsibility. (shrink)
The convergence of biomedical sciences with nanotechnology as well as ICT has created a new wave of biomedical technologies, resulting in visions of a ‘molecular medicine’. Since novel technologies tend to shift concepts of disease and health, this paper investigates how the emerging field of molecular medicine may shift the meaning of ‘disease’ as well as the boundary between health and disease. It gives a brief overview of the development towards and the often very speculative visions of molecular medicine. Subsequently (...) three views of disease often used in the philosophy of medicine are briefly discussed: the ontological or neo-ontological, the physiological and the normative/holistic concepts of disease. Against this background two tendencies in the field of molecular medicine are highlighted: (1) the use of a cascade model of disease and (2) the notion of disease as a deviation from an individual pattern of functioning. It becomes clear that molecular medicine pulls conceptualizations of disease and health in several, partly opposed directions. However, the resulting tensions may also offer opportunities to steer the future of medicine in more desirable directions. (shrink)
A selection of essays which proposes strategies for practising conflict in feminism and explores the most critically divisive issues in feminism today. The contributors analyze how particular debates have worked both for and against feminist thought.
Exploratory studies employing volunteer subjects are especially vulnerable to race and class bias. This article illustrates how inattention to race and class as critical dimensions in women's lives can produce biased research samples and lead to false conclusions. It analyzes the race and class background of 200 women who volunteered to participate in an in-depth study of Black and White professional, managerial, and administrative women. Despite a multiplicity of methods used to solicit subjects, White women raised in middle-class families who (...) worked in male-dominated occupations were the most likely to volunteer, and White women were more than twice as likely to respond to media solicitations or letters. To recruit most Black subjects and address their concerns about participation required more labor-intensive strategies involving personal contact. The article discusses reasons for differential volunteering and ways to integrate race and class into qualitative research on women. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: Preface; Using this book; Notes for instructors; Part I. Bioethics and Ethics: 1. Biotechnology and bioethics: what it's all about; 2. Ethics in general: ethics, action and freedom; 3. Ethics in the context of society: ethics, society and the law; 4. Ethical theories: virtue, duty and happiness; 5. Identifying and evaluating arguments: logic and morality; 6. General arguments: unnatural, disgusting, risky, only opinion; Part II. The Beginning and End of Life: Section 1. Cloning: 7. Therapeutic cloning: (...) the moral status of embryos; 8. Reproductive cloning: science and science fiction; Section 2. Reproduction: 9. Reproductive freedom: rights, responsibilities and choice; 10. The resources of reproduction: eggs, sperm and wombs for sale; 11. Screening and embryo selection: eliminating disorders or people?; Section 3. Ageing and Death: 12. Ageing and immortality: the search for longevity; 13. Death and killing: the quality and value of life; Part III. In The Midst of Life: Section 4. Our Duties to Ourselves: 14. Human enhancement: the more the better?; 15. Bio-information: databases, privacy and the fight against crime; 16. Security and defence: security sensitivity, publication and warfare; Section 5. Our Duties to Each Other: 17. Food and energy security: GM food, biofuel and the media; 18. Bio-ownership: who owns the stuff of life?; 19. Human justice: the developed and developing worlds; Section 6. Our Duties to Nature: 20. Non-human animals: consciousness, rationality and animal rights; 21. The living and non-living environment: spaceship Earth; Index. (shrink)
ABSTRACT Although virtue ethics has emerged as an influential ethical theory within the academy, universities have not generally taken up the practical task of virtue cultivation. Some academics even resist the effort altogether. In response, this article presents an early-stage evaluation of one effort to cultivate virtue in postgraduate students, a theoretically derived and empirically measured character development programme at the University of Oxford. The study uses a pre- and post-test experimental design to assess whether participation results in measurable growth (...) of four character virtues. Quantitative data offer evidence for modest improvement with respect to two of the four focal virtues measured, while qualitative data suggest that future iterations should ensure that participants are given both reflective, conceptual tools and practical, everyday tasks to cultivate virtue. The article provides both empirical support and future directions for ongoing research and programme development for cultivating virtue in the university. (shrink)
Phenomenology has been adapted for use in qualitative health research, where it’s often used as a method for conducting interviews and analyzing interview data. But how can phenomenologists study subjects who cannot accurately reflect upon or report their own experiences, for instance, because of a psychiatric or neurological disorder? For conditions like these, qualitative researchers may gain more insight by conducting observational studies in lieu of, or in conjunction with, interviews. In this article, we introduce a phenomenological approach to conducting (...) this kind of observational research. The approach relies on conceptual grounding to focus a study on specific aspects of the participants’ experiences. Moreover, the approach maintains the openness to novel discoveries that qualitative research requires while also providing a structured framework for data collection and analysis. To illustrate its practical application, we use examples of hemispatial neglect—a neurologic disorder in which patients characteristically lack awareness of their own illness and bodily capacities. However, the approach that we describe can be applied more broadly to the study of complex illness experiences and other experiential alterations. (shrink)
The Dutch pig husbandry has become a topic of public debate. One underlying cause is that pig farmers and urban-citizens have different perspectives and underlying norms, values and truths on pig husbandry and animal welfare. One way of dealing with such conflicts involves a learning process in which a shared vision is developed. A prerequisite for this process is that both parties become aware of their own fixed patterns of thoughts, actions, and blind spots. Therefore, we conducted five homogeneous focus (...) groups consisting of either urban-citizens or pig farmers. The first part of the sessions aimed to make the participants aware of their own perspectives and underlying norms and values concerning animal welfare, farm practices or consumer behavior. Then, by the use of role-play and film fragments showing the perspectives of the other party, we aimed to stimulate frame reflection. The farmers maintained their own perspective and defended their practices. They denied the perspective of the urban-citizens by portraying them as ignorant of the “factual” farm practices. They proposed the use of one-way information, but our results indicate that this is likely to fail as a strategy to support or restore public acceptance. Our case shows hardy any consensus regarding the relevance of the facts at stake and a very limited amount of shared values. However, the shared love for animals together with the recognition by the urban-citizens of the inescapable dilemma for farmers to adopt a use-framing towards animals might provide an opening for further learning strategies. (shrink)
This paper is a critique of forgiveness therapy that focuses on the cultural contexts in which forgiveness therapy arose, with a special focus on the movement to address the victimization of women. I describe forgiveness as described by forgiveness therapy advocates and the moral and non-moral benefits claimed on its behalf. I then describe the cultural context that may explain the popularity of this form of therapy at this historical moment; the first context is a broad cultural context, looking at (...) ideologies and practices that support forgiveness as a therapeutic intervention; the second context is the more narrow context of a movement within the field of psychology called "positive psychology" that also supports forgiveness interventions; and the third context, is the ideologies and narratives around victimization and in particular victimization against women that have led to an application of forgiveness therapy for victims of abuse . After describing these three contexts in which forgiveness therapy arose, I present a critique from a feminist as well as a broader humanistic/psychodynamic perspective. 2012 APA, all rights reserved). (shrink)
From the 1960s, mathematical and computational tools have been developed to arrive at human population trees from various kinds of serological and molecular data. Focusing on the work of the Italian-born population geneticist Luigi Luca Cavalli-Sforza, I follow the practices of tree-building and mapping from the early blood-group studies to the current genetic admixture research. I argue that the visual language of the tree is paralleled in the narrative of the human diasporas, and I show how the tree was actually (...) mapped onto the surface of the earth. This visual and textual structure is mirrored in the liberal discourse of unity in diversity that has been criticized as running counter to the socio-political effects of human population genetics. From this perspective, one may ask how far the phylogenetic diagram in its various forms is a manifestation of the physics of power that according to Michel Foucault consists in mechanisms that analyse distributions, movements, series, combinations, and that uses instruments to render visible, to register, to differentiate and to compare. It is one among other disciplinary technologies that ensure the ordering of human diversity. In the case of intra-human phylogenetic trees, population samples and labels are one issue. Another is that the separated branches seem to show groups of people, who have in reality been interacting and converging, as isolated. Often based on so-called isolated peoples, molecular tree diagrams freeze a hierarchical kinship system that is meant to represent a state before the great historical population movements. (shrink)
During the first decades of the 20th century, many anthropologists who had previously adhered to a linear view of human evolution, from an ape via Pithecanthropus erectus and Neanderthal to modern humans, began to change their outlook. A shift towards a branching model of human evolution began to take hold. Among the scientific factors motivating this trend was the insight that mammalian evolution in general was best represented by a branching tree, rather than by a straight line, and that several (...) new fossil hominids were discovered that differed significantly in their morphology but seemed to date from about the same period. The ideological and practical implications of imperialism and WWI have also been identified as formative of the new evolutionary scenarios in which racial conflict played a crucial role. The paper will illustrate this general shift in anthropological theory for one particular scientist, William Sollas. Sollas achieved a synthesis of human morphological and cultural evolution in what I will refer to as an imperialist model. In this theoretical framework, migration, conflict, and replacement became the main mechanisms for progress spurred by 'nature's tyrant,' natural selection. (shrink)