Historians of a generation ago were often shocked by the violence with which scientists rejected the history of their own subject as irrelevant; they could not understand how the members of any academic profession could fail to be intrigued by the study of their own cultural heritage. What these historians did not grasp was that scientists will welcome the history of science only when it has been demonstrated that this discipline can add to our understanding of science itself and thus help to produce, in some sense, better scientists.'' --Bernard Cohen. U. S. historian of science.
``The greatest part of mankind has no other reason for their opinions than that they are in fashion''
-- Samuel Johnson
I. The Nature of Science, Part I
Most people hold science as an objective view on the functions and nature of reality. It holds itself as impartial and binding. People have continually and increasingly based their lives and beliefs on what science says is true at the moment for over a hundred and fifty years. However, science can be anything but objective. It is reactionary for the most part, holding onto theories long after they have lost credibility simply through the force of their momentum in human thought. People were taught something is true, and they are loath to give up their beliefs. They will even go to great lengths to prove false theories true as well as covering up and ignoring evidence.
At the same time although much more rarely, new theories will be accepted quickly when it supports various groups' views or interests. Conspiracies of men who seek to change society have in the past latched onto theories that if true will disrupt society for that very purpose. These two modes of purpose have no care whether a theory is true or not, but merely on what people want to be true. This is self-interest in action. Because of it, science becomes biased, generally reactionary, and filled with untruths. This is simply because human beings create science and are themselves biased, reactionary, and filled with untruths and agendas. The typical human experience exemplifies this. What generation does not perceive this of the generation that preceded it? History shows this clearly, and the history of science even more so. Thus in order to understand any particular theory or scientific idea, one must look at the history of that idea or theory.
Evolutionary theory is the most pervasive theory currently present. It has developed into a general system to explain the origins of all things. This started with a mere theory to explain the origin of species and has developed to explain the origin of the universe. It seems a natural progression of science to believe that all things can be explained by present principles and mechanisms. This belief has taken over many sciences. Some of these theories will be examined in this work as to their validity, in particular, the theories regarding the origins of the cosmos, the solar system, the earth, and life itself. The theories regarding the evolution of life will be examined first as these were the ideas that first sparked this wave of change in science, and to examine this theory, its history must examined first.
II. The Ancient Greeks
The present theory of evolution is not a recent theory, as is often portrayed, as something original and newly hatched in modern times. Its roots grew in antiquity as many theories did. Rather than being a novel and modern idea, it is the natural progression of any attempt to classify animals. The first attempt was made by the ancient Greeks and has only been refined in methodology since then. Any attempt at the classification of organisms, seems in turn to result in the discovery that a seemingly natural progression occurs from simpler to more complex animals.
This progression is only natural in so far as any species has within it a number of related races. These races are a natural and sometimes historical occurrence within the species. The linking of species together however is a thoroughly artificially process made with no physical evidence of relation other than within man?s mind. In other words, there is no immediate and present evidence that a dog and cat are related other than by artificially putting them within a classification system and grouping animals together by chosen features. Even these chosen features are entirely artificial since choosing other features on would result in a different classification system. This has occurred in classification attempts many times as scientists change the features they believe to be important. The most current change is being forced by analysis of DNA.
Furthermore, these systems are predictably biased toward mankind, and it is there that the very idea of this progression is forced to lead. Simple animals progress toward the more advanced in order to arrive at the highest order of creature, which is of course the species making the list, man. Yet mankind is physically inferior to many other creatures. The Greeks recognized this early. Their myth of the creation of mankind had the titan Epimetheus handing out all the talents and abilities to animals, and when he got around to making man, he had no abilities left to give mankind. Intellectual powers therefore become the means by which man can overcome other creatures and thus becomes the measure of this progress, since mankind is superior to all others in this respect. Animals with higher intelligence become superior to those with lower intelligence. Thus jellyfish and corals appear at the bottom of the list, then fish, then amphibians and reptiles, then mammals and then man at the top of the list.
One of the first individuals to arrive at this progression and the first theory of evolution was Thales around 600 BC. Thales centered his philosophy in the idea of fundamental substances. He decided these were water, air, earth, and fire. These ``elements" were derived from the four states of matter of later chemistry: liquid, gas, solid, and plasma. He believed the essential element from which all else derived was water, as he observed that liquid metals could be turned into solids and the actions of rivers produced earth, seemingly from nowhere to produce deltas. Thales observed that all living things are moist and most generate heat. Moreover, the seminal fluid of animals is also moist and liquid in state. Furthermore, the sudden appearance of life from lifeless substances, called spontaneous generation, was seen in water all the time. Still waters in ponds seemingly create life in multitudes, and water in containers seemed to form life as it grew stagnant. Thus, all life was theorized to derive from water and heat. This was one of the first attempts ever to show a natural rather than teological (spiritual) explanation for the origin of life.
Anaximander was a contemporary of Thales in the same city of Miletus in Asia Minor. He also believed that life originated from moisture, but asserted that fish were generated first then mankind came from fish. He thought this because of the observation that human infants must have been nurtured by other creatures since human infants can not take care of themselves.
The next great theorist on the subject was Empedocles who lived around 450 BC. He took Thales four elements and added two great forces, which he called love and strife. These forces amounted to attraction and repulsion. He believed the universe went through two cycles, one where love dominated and the other where strife ruled. In the phase where love dominated, it started with the four elements being utterly separated and love mixed the elements, creating the world we live in. This attractive force then destroys the world by further combining the elements into a uniform mixture. All things would be united together to form a world soul or god, wherein individuality is destroyed. The moment this world soul is formed the cycle of strife takes over and slowly divides the elements to create the world again. It then destroys it as the elements totally separate to form their original state. Empedocles modeled this cycle on the respiration of animals with blood and air being akin to the primordial forces. The world unity breathes out and separates and then breathes in and coalesces into unity again. The Hindu religions, which were also highly interested in respiration, came up with a similar belief about the nature of the soul. In the middle period of both cycles, organs and bodily parts were formed out of the mixture of elements by strife and attracted each other by love to form all the creatures on earth. More advanced and more perfect creatures were formed as time went on, with less perfect creatures dying out. This explained why all animals had the same organs and also the presence of mythological creatures that where half animal and half human, being imperfect mixtures of organs.
Less than a hundred years later, two students of Socrates laid the foundation for the dominant theories of the Western world: Plato and Aristotle. In particular, Aristotle criticized the previous theories of life for neglecting the facts. He saw that life propagates from within itself. Humans produce more humans, apes produce apes, etc. He also saw that animals develop not from chance, but from an established order within itself. Each seed produces an adult creature similar to the adult which produced the seed. He observed the continuity of life. Aristotle was also one of the first people to study animals in detail and to classify them. He divided animals into two large classes: those with red blood and those without. The animals with blood he divided into five categories: four-footed animals with live offspring, four-footed egg-laying animals, birds, fish, and whales. The bloodless animals were divided into four categories: cephalopods (octopi), insects, shelled animals (mollusks), and animal-plants (jellyfish and corals).
Yet here Aristotle went against the facts he had seen of nature in order to create a grander theory of the world around him. He produced his own theory of evolution drawing on the theories he himself criticized. To him, simple life forms spontaneously generated from moisture and this then evolved into plant life, which turned into animals and eventually into mankind. Aristotle believed the force behind this evolution was the action of purpose and becoming. He believed all change was an attempt to reach an end state and achieve its purpose. Change was the process of becoming this end state or purpose, and it was the natural state of the universe to unfold into this purpose. Aristotle believed that Man, the reasoning animal, was the purpose of this evolution, as many involved in classification efforts naturally conclude.
Like Empedocles, Aristotle?s universe begins with a Prime Mover, which Aristotle reasoned must exist as an initial cause. The universe then seeks to return to him by mirroring his nature much like the forms and objects of Plato did. He thought that this prime mover exists outside a series of crystalline spheres that contain the planets. Aristotle thought of a fifth element called aether that formed these spheres and the planets to differentiate between them and normal matter. He thought the aether should be eternal and unchanging so that the planets and the realm of the Prime mover were altogether different from the sub-lunar spheres. He theorized that the materialistic drive to return to the creator or to become like him drove evolution along and creates mankind to mirror the intellect of the prime mover. Thus instead of the driving forces of love and strife pulling and tearing the universe apart, Aristotle substituted a love for the creator as the prime force of universe that mimics its creator and the higher reality.
Aristotle's grand theory was a blend of many philosophies. He formed a synthesis of his ideas of becoming and Empedocles' ideas about the universal forces. He also seems to entertain more ancient mythological ideas about heaven and earth, where earth mimics and mirrors heaven albeit imperfectly. The mind of man forms to mirror the mind of god or the prime mover. These ideas would be represented in Aristotle's philosophy and later adopted by Christian thinkers hold sway over thought for two-thousand years.
III. Precursors to Darwin
The modern age of science could be said to begin with Rene Descartes and Francis Bacon in the early 1600's. Unlike the modern mythology that likes to portray science and religion at odds, nothing could be further from the truth. In particular, Descartes believed in a Christian god and helped create modern science in an attempt to discover god's actions within his creation. Descartes was a mathematician, a philosopher and one of the first real scientists. He helped create modern mathematics by originating analytic geometry and applied infinitesimal calculus. He also made discoveries in the field of optics and formulated a corpuscular theory of matter and a theory of light. He famously sought to prove his existence by reason, which culminated in the phrase, ``I think therefore I am,'' and then went on to prove the existence of god as the only thing the mind could not conceive. This was the basis for his rational philosophy upon which he built both his philosophy and his scientific method. His ideas in turn began all of modern philosophy forming the rationalist school.
Descartes and the men that followed him like Leibniz and Newton believed in natural laws upheld by a god that created and ruled the universe. These laws could then be discovered by humans and thereby know how the universe behaved. In so doing, one could get closer to knowing the mind of the creator. Descartes used the principles of mathematics and particularly geometry to construct a methodology for examining the universe around him. In 1637, He published his theories in Discours de la Methode in which his previous declaration of existence was made. This work developed the Cartesian method of not assuming any things not known, analyzing the problem by breaking it into small parts or problems, theorizing, and then testing and experimenting to prove the theory, which would later become the scientific method. Descartes also created novel methods of displaying objects on paper such as his coordinate system and the histogram.
In 1644, Descartes continued his skeptical path in Principia Philosophiae and portrays his view of the universe as a continuous whole that was set into motion by God. This motion is then continued by laws set forth by God that continue the motion indefinitely as any motion imparts its motion to other objects. He defined inertia as the resistance of matter to changes in motion and was caused by the immutability of God rather than a characteristic of matter. He does the same to what he calls the quantity of motion or momentum. He believed that momentum is conserved throughout the universe remaining finite and constant. For Descartes, science is a religious quest to know god better. The race to discover the laws of god led to the scientific revolution.
One such man was Carolus Linnaeus who formulated the modern system of classification of life. He studied plants and grouped them according to their structures and placed them together in categories like Aristotle, also grouping like animals together. At the time, biologists used long, unwieldy Latin to describe organisms. Linnaeus simplified this information into a system of using a two name system, called binomial nomenclature, that persists through today. Two Latin words were used to name any creature's type. The first name is the genera or group Linnaeus placed them in and the second refers to the species. He further grouped them into families and orders and eventually into a plant or animal kingdom. Linnaeus initially believed that all species were fixed, but eventually added the possibility of hybrids that added additional species to the world. His belief in the fixity of species was grounded in his religious beliefs. Linnaeus stated affirmatively that like only produces like species. Hybrids that occurred between species of animals almost always proved to be sterile, so this did not seem like a viable way to create new species.
He was thoroughly immersed in the Cartesian method of science as evidenced by his quote in the introduction to his life's work: ``The Earth?s creation is the glory of God, as seen from the works of Nature by Man alone.'' Linnaeus arbitrary classification system is passed down to us in form and remains virtually the same for higher animals. His classification of plants according to sexual structures created confusion and did not correspond to other structures as evidence of the former statement that the choosing of which structures to form like groups is an artificial one. More modern systems choose other features. He also did not perfect any classification of lower animals. However, placing all creatures together according to their similarities again brought both evolutionary and progressive ideas into play for other researchers.
Another such man was Nicholas Steno who worked with anatomy and geology. In 1669, he was one of the first people to compare living shark teeth to fossilized teeth and theorize that they came from a once living animal. He further studied the layers of stone these fossils came from and developed the first laws of geology. His principle of original horizontality states that layers form in horizontal position and any change in that state occurs later. His law of superposition states that rock layers are arranged in sequence with the oldest rock on bottom and youngest rock on top, unless they are disturbed by later forces. He also noticed the lowest layers of rock in the Apennine Mountains contained no fossils and those higher up contained many fossils. This was the beginning of geology, which would also play a corresponding part in the formation of evolutionary theory.
While the Protestant Churches encouraged this Cartesian revolution, the Catholic Church did not, as it was concerned with gaining and maintaining power. As such, it attacked any deviation of its beliefs, including non-religious ones based on the Greek philosophies it had adopted as its own. They persecuted all groups that disagreed with them, including Christian ones, ranging from their predecessor churches in Eastern Europe to the massacre of Christians in Bohemia in the Middle Ages. This is why the persecution of early scientists occurred almost exclusively in papal controlled countries, and why science grew rapidly in Protestant countries like England and Germany. Yet in France, the Catholic church had been weakened by a strong monarchy and religious schisms. This country also became a center of science and this combined with a repressive church became a dangerous mix.
In eighteenth century France, an intellectual movement plotted to overthrow the established hierarchy that controlled the majority of the populace. This conspiracy involved many people at varying levels of society. While conspiracy theories abound today that purport many imaginary activities and schemes of overthrowing world powers, this one did in fact exist. Not only did it exist, but it succeeded in no small part thanks to the incompetence of the powers in question. It began from the new and growing middle class, for which the social structure of the time made no room. The only form of representative government was the Parlements made of three houses, one for each class of people or estate. The first estate consisted of the nobility and the second estate consisted of the clergy, which had blood ties to the first estate often being composed of the siblings of those nobles that did not advance to the seats of power. Each house had one vote on any proposal so that the first two estates could always overrule the third. The middle class dwelled within the third estate, and thus could be overruled by the other two estates leaving them no say in their government. The second estate also supported the power of the first estate with religious philosophy. The king, and thereby all nobility, ruled by divine right, which was a theological belief created in France. This divine right meant that God predestined nobles to reach their current position, and therefore had god's mandate to rule. Thus any attempt to take power away from the nobles was a questioning of God's authority. This was against the clear teachings of Christianity dating back through Judaism that the king is not above the law and applied to all men equally. Thus, the middle class began to reason that any attempt to change the power structure must therefore involve a discrediting of the church's authority.
A circle of malcontents, socialites, and philosophers, the philosophe, arose in France during that century to form this conspiracy. They sought at first to make things more equitable and later to overthrow the other two estates. The unquestioning belief in progress became the central belief of this group. These men quite clearly proposed to use the dissemination of knowledge, education, and propaganda to change the nation. As such, some of these philosophe used their studies into the natural sciences toward this goal. Their efforts intensified in the last quarter of the eighteenth century as the monarchy sought to raise taxes on the lower and middle classes, which the nobility by right could refuse to contribute. The nobility therefore possessed all the privileges but none of the burdens of the nation to which they belonged.
The philsophe, instead of wanting to build off of the past, saw it riddled and bound in errors and institutions that imprisoned the spirit of man. This was quite clearly evident to them in the Catholic Church which directly sought to maintain the status quo. These men saw themselves as lifting mankind out of darker ages into an enlightened time. They sought to abolish church and state and replace it with a new order of humane equality. They therefore saw Christianity and the Catholic Church as negative influences of the past and an enemy. The two most influential originators of the philosophe were Francois Marie Arouet, known by his pen name Voltaire, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau. Both men held seemingly contradictory beliefs, and did not seem to realize or be bothered about the internal conflicts of their theories.
Voltaire began his early career to associate within circles of nobles and wrote parodies of some of them. For this, he was imprisoned a few times, beaten, and even exiled for a time. Afterwards, he began to use his pen name as protection. He desired equality between his class and the upper classes and a fair system of justice from a purely self-interested motive. To do this, the upper classes would have to be weakened. Thus, he actively sought to attack the power of the nobility and the church that supported it. He originated and spread antichristian propaganda, such that religion was the cause of most of the inhumanity of mankind, such as most wars, mass extermination, torture and murder that have plagued mankind. Much of this propaganda still circulates today without much question. Another famous propaganda that he created was embodied in his phrase: ``If god did not exist, he would have to be invented.'' This of course infers that god was created by mankind and does not exist independently. In 1756, he published An Essay on the Manners and Spirit of Nations. This was a world history in which he portrayed religion as a collection of superstitions that suppressed freedom and knowledge. In this work, he described the period of time after the fall of Rome as the ``Dark Ages'' because of the domination of the Catholic Church. He coined this term and it referred to his belief that the church suppressed knowledge and prevented freedom of thought. This ignores the church's role in the preservation of knowledge from the ancient world, and that many of its scientific beliefs, in fact, came from Plato and Aristotle. He also overstated the glories of the ancient world and travesties of his Dark Ages. Voltaire's fight against the church became so important in his life that he took to signing his many letters Ecrasez l'infame which means ``crush the infamous thing,'' which is believed to mean either the Catholic Church itself or the old order, including the church.
Voltaire however seemed to view the lower classes poorly. He was born into a wealthy middle class family and ended his life being both richer than most nobles as well as becoming nobility himself, owning an estate with tenants. His distrust of the lower class made him argue that religion was necessary to keep those classes moral. He promoted Deism among the middle and upper classes, which taught that God created the universe and then left it to its own devices. Religion then should concern itself only with moral behavior and not the practical world, and tolerance of all religions to prevent the injustices of the past that Voltaire ascribed to it. He viewed the nature of man as unchanging, yet he believed in the progress of society through science and commerce, along with the values of his class. He believed this even though his own historical work showed it not to be true. He distrusted a wholesale revolution favoring slow political reform and this idea conflicted with Rousseau's that he ridiculed.
Rousseau on the other hand came from the lower classes and therefore identified with them rather than solely the middle class, or bourgeoisie, like Voltaire did. Rousseau was a multitalented man with recurring bouts of mental illness and paranoia. In 1750, he published Discours sur les Sciences et les Arts in which he wrote that culture was merely a distracting influence to hide the inequalities and corruption of society. Intellectual pursuits then did not promote progress as Voltaire believed, but merely distracted individuals from the real problems. In 1753, he followed up on this work with the Discourse on Inequality. In this work, Rousseau wrote that all injustices were caused by corrupted government and society trying to restrain the natural impulses of individuals. Rousseau believed man was naturally good but that civilization corrupted the natural state of man that man existed in before he entered civilization. In that state, man was free and equal and existed in the same state as animals do. For Rousseau, religion then becomes merely another corrupting force and keeps them from a purer natural religion. This would be an entirely personal thing between man and God with no external religious ceremonies. This belief fell somewhere in line with Deism but also held strong beliefs that God could be found within nature that helped lead to Romantic Movement later.
In 1762, he produced the Du Contrat Social, which summed up his political beliefs. It began with the phrase: ``Man is born free, and everywhere he is in chains.'' In this work, Rousseau theorized a pre-civilized state where men entered into a society for their mutual benefit and protection. He believed this state is lawless and without concern for others. Men create society to set boundaries between each other and to work together rather than in competition. The social contract then is the agreement made between men to form society rather than a contract between man and a society as a whole. Rousseau then goes on to describe the most perfect form of society based on his idea that the contract was made for cooperation. This society would be governed without hierarchical systems of nobles, but by the rule of the mass through a ``general will'' that arises from every individual and therefore promotes equality since all have equal contribution to this will. This system would arise from and promote a feeling of fraternity in which every member would give up his freedom and rights for the good of his brothers or the state as a whole. The rule of the general will would be absolute and merciless. However, Rousseau did not give anything more than general accounts of how this state would function He proposed that it would have to come about through education and using taxes to redistribute wealth. In the same year, Rousseau published Emile, a manual on education, in which he recommended that children not be exposed to traditional learning and culture. Children were to be allowed to discover things on their own at their own pace with the teacher as guide. This was in accordance with Rousseau's belief that civilization and culture corrupted mankind, therefore children should be kept from culture as long as possible. This included religion and children were only to be exposed to a `natural' form of deism.
The greatest work of the philosophe was a mass of scientific, philosophical and technical knowledge compiled in the Encyclopedie by Denis Diderot in the 1740's. This included works by both Voltaire and Rousseau. His purpose was to secularize knowledge and remove it from the province of the Church, since before the Church had been the main source of education. Moreover, it taught that human improvement was no longer a spiritual matter, but a materialistic one. Man could improve himself by mastery of the world around him. The three ideas of progress, deism and tolerance became pervasive throughout this work. They believed that man was progressing toward a new and better future through education and control of knowledge.
At the time, France was the most populous and powerful country in Europe, as well as being its cultural center. Any philosophies that originated there spread to the rest of the world. French philosophy took root also in England and English culture affected the French as well. Cartesian philosophy produced men like Newton and Locke in England. The philosophe's teachings produced their own generation of disciples in England. England however had a more tolerant social structure that incorporated the middle class easily; therefore the philosophe's anti-religious bias transferred without clear purpose. Edward Gibbon was one such affected man. He was a deist and produced the history, The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire in 1776. In it, he wrote that the main cause of the fall of Rome was the spread of Christianity, which he thought wrecked Roman virtues and rationalism. This is stated instead of more complicated answers, such as Rome had simply grown too large and corrupt. Again, Christianity is made the cause of superstition, evil, and the downfall of civilization, echoing Voltaire's propaganda.
Today, these natural philosophers' theories are presented with the coldness of time as objective and naturally flowing from the evidence they found. Yet it must be remembered what their primary goal was: to question the authority of the church and thereby that of the state in order to gain political power for their class. It was from here that several myths about Christianity and Science began. Christianity is portrayed as being against reason and science. History is skewed to portray a battle between the reason of science and the blind faith of religion, and religion is portrayed as trying to destroy science and to suppress its discoveries. Any Christian views are therefore unscientific. The truth is that the Christian viewpoint caused the origin of modern science. It is the foundation of the idea of universal natural law by which god ruled the world in the tradition of Descartes and Newton. Its major flaw on the Catholic side was not in supporting superstition, but in adopting Greek theories as their own and treating these as indisputable facts as the medieval mindset generally did as a whole, appealing to the authority of ancient thinkers. Voltaire's most lingering propaganda is that Christianity is the cause of most wars and human suffering. This view persist till today. Their dogma that religion is the cause of most war is simplistic at best and ignores any detailed examination of the cause of wars. Most wars are caused by a desire for power or resources, not religion. The best example of this propaganda is of course the Crusades. On the surface, these wars were in fact caused by a religious desire to free the Holy Land and allow travelers there to be unmolested, but it ignores the more prevalent reasons of monarchs and the papacy trying to weaken the nobility by sending them off to war and cementing their power. One glaring example that it was not entirely a war against the Turks, but one of power, is the sacking of Constantinople, a Christian city, but not a Catholic one. It would be like saying World War One was caused by a desire to spread democracy or end all wars, instead of the real reason of entangling alliances and unfortunate deaths. But the slogans of propaganda are more easily remembered than complicated facts and reasons. Even the Islamic terrorism of today can be seen not to be compelled by their religion, but by envy over the large ethnic discrepancies of wealth and power between the Islamic world and the first world countries and dislike of foreign intrusions and control by these Western powers. It could also be seen as acts of frustration against their own governments by attacking the Western powers that created and support them. Complex world events can not be attributed solely to simplistic answers.
The same reasoning follows propaganda concerning religious causes of human suffering. The primary example of this propaganda is the Inquisition. While it appears as if it is a religious persecution, it could also be more accurately portrayed as a grab by nobles and others at the property of those to be deemed heretics, especially since the government and the church split the property of those accused. Jews, being the only ones allowed to run banks, became the primary targets of the Inquisition in Spain, not mainly to attack another religion, but far more likely to get at their wealth. This is just as France accused as heretics and destroyed the wealthy Templar knights, who were also an early banking institution, to get their wealth and to cancel its debt. Furthermore, this ignores all the good that the Christian church has done. Feeding the poor and taking care of orphans and widows are both central missions of this creed and deems it their responsibility. In the many centuries before welfare programs existed, it was only small churches that provided support for the downtrodden members of society from its very inception. Charity is the primary virtue of Christianity, which originated the concept. Thus, these propagandas are not factually based, but merely slogans for a movement that has long since died.
This attack on Christianity became the arena that the seeds of evolution would begin to sprout. However, the majority of the philosophe could not get beyond the Aristotelian need for a Prime Mover. God was still the creator and called for a belief in him and therefore a legitimate base for the church's existence. First causes must be explained if the need for religion would be eliminated. In this atmosphere of antagonism toward religion and the desire to use knowledge and propaganda to bring it and society down, men arose to examine natural science toward this cause.
One such influential philosophe was the Comte De Buffon, who in 1788 expanded the science of geology in his work Les Epoques de la Nature. In this, Buffon proposed what would later be called the Uniformitarian theory of geology. This theory holds that the earth is slowly shaped by natural processes occurring now at a steady rate, and by studying these existing processes, one can explain all the evidence of the past. Buffon also estimated that the earth would have to be much older than the six thousand years accepted at the time for all observed phenomenon to take place. He believed the earth started as a molten sphere and slowly cooled to its present form.
To test this, he heated a sphere of earth-like materials and timed its cooling. Extrapolating the cooling times of larger and larger spheres, he arrived at an age of the earth on the order of 75,000 years. He also hinted at common ancestry for man and apes and that species were mutable over time. Buffon constructed seven epochs of time to account for various evidence. He discounted the previously held opinion that the earth's heat resulted from internal fires. Rather, he thought it was leftover from its initial heat. The first epoch consisted of the forming planet by accumulation of comets. The second consisted of the cooling planet and forming of minerals. It was during this stage in cooling spheres that he noticed small ridges and air pockets form on his spheres. The same would occur on the earth in the form of mountains and vast caverns. The third epoch would have oceans condensing on the surface of the earth and covering everything except the mountain tops, which would explain the existence of marine fossils on dry land. The fourth stage consisted of the retreat of the oceans and the appearance of the continents. Animals marked the fifth stage with tropical animals living in the north. The continents were connected to allow the migration of similar species to different parts of the world. This began a long trend of science to reformulate the geography of the world based on similar species inhabiting different areas, culminating in the creation of the hypothetical continent of Lemuria to explain the distribution of lemurs.
Buffon then created an origin for animals by spontaneous generation of life forms by the action of heat. This occurred in the far north where the earth cooled down sooner. Animals that inhabited the tropical zones originated first, which explained the presence of elephants in north America and Siberia. They then migrated south as temperatures cooled. This explains why American elephants died out missing the small passage to South America. He described North American animals as less diverse and smaller due to the colder climate, as he thought even imported animals would decline into smaller versions. This included humans as well, with American Indians being subhuman in his opinion. The South American animals were correspondingly different due to their isolation and weaker process of spontaneously generation. The sixth epoch spanned the separation of the continents and the domination of man occurred in the seventh epoch. He believed new species might originate as the earth cooled more and eventually all life would die as the earth lost all its heat. Thus, the Earth was a vast engine fueled by its internal heat and even the process of life was driven by this action. This began a close association of geology and the origin of life as linked natural causes.
Furthermore, Buffon noted that animals seemed adapted to the environment they occur in. This started the Environmentalist school, which eventually failed as no mechanism could be found to cause such adaptations to their surroundings. Buffon also believed in the fixity of species as much as Linnaeus, yet he did see the formation of races within species to explain their variability. This was his theory of varieties and was used to explain the races of man.
A short time later, James Hutton began his work in England elaborating examples for the Uniformitarian theory and defining the methods it would work by. Assuming Buffon's theory that all geological activity had been formed at the same rate and processes as in historic times, Hutton proposed a vastly older earth for these processes to work. He proposed that the Earth was eternal. He reasoned that if current processes had always continued in the past and would continue in the future then the world would be without beginning and without end. His uniformatarian theory was also known as the Plutonic theory. Hutton viewed the earth as a place perfectly balanced for human life by its Creator. The world was again a colossal engine driven in its cycles of using and replenishing resources by the heat at its center which was produced by burning the coal within it and even the coal was replenished by these great cycles. Hutton published these ideas in The Theory of the Earth in 1795. This theory was held in poor acceptance versus theories based on Christianity as later defined by Cuvier.
William Smith, in the late eighteenth century, created the idea of faunal succession of fossils. He theorized that each layer of rock was formed in a different age and that each layer preserved the animals and plants alive at that time the layer formed with the fossils within it. He found that the same type of fossils occurred in the same order in the layers of rock in different areas. This seemed to show that each age had different animals and plants, and that there were many organisms that had become extinct. Smith also began the process of determining a sedimentary layer's position in the column of rock by the fossils it contained. Thus he created the idea of a geological column as marked by the fossil evidence. By 1815, Smith had a map of the geological column for all of England. Smith created the idea of index fossils, which could be used to mark the age of a rock layer by its mere presence. He created a new and easier way of correlating strata in different regions. Instead of the previous method of comparing rock composition, he correlated different strata in different regions by their fossil content. This soon became the dominant method for dating, labeling and arranging rock strata by geology. So important was this method that the Geological Society of London awarded its first Wollaston Medal, its highest honor, to him in 1831. The president of this society made the following speech at the presentation of this award:
If, in the pride of our present strength, we were disposed to forget our origin, our very speech betrays us: for we use the language which he taught us in the infancy of our science. If we, by our united efforts, are chiseling the ornaments and slowly raising up the pinnacles of one of the temples of nature, it was he that gave the plan, and laid the foundations, and erected a portion of the solid walls, by the unassisted labour of his hands.
Previously in the late eighteenth century in the realm of biology, Jean Baptiste de Lamarck began his career working with plants. He attempted to make a classification of plants ignoring Linnaeus' methodology and published his work in a three volume work on French plants entitled Flore Frangaise in 1778. This work led him to be accepted into the French Academy of Sciences and from there was hired by Buffon as a tutor for his son. He also wrote voluminously for one of the many Encyclopedias mentioned above. When the French Revolution overthrew the monarchy, Lamarck urged for the creation and structure of a natural history museum according to his classification scheme. With its creation in 1793, Lamarck was placed in charge of the invertebrate section. During his tenure, he was the first to attempt to classify invertebrates and published his system in 1801, which endures for the most part to the modern day. He was also the first to compare fossils to living specimens. Yet Lamarck became disenchanted with the experimental sciences that were beginning to flourish. These sciences like chemistry began to depart from grand inclusive theories toward more detailed explanations of what actually exists. He wished for the grand unified theory of his day, uniting biology, geology, and all other sciences in one simple explanation of the universe. This is what he dedicated his life to.
He strove toward this with a theory of combustion aimed at the developing science of chemistry. In 1802, he developed a geological theory of a series of world floods that produced the sedimentary layers and deposited the fossils within them. He proposed that the type of creature that made a fossil could then determine whether the layer was formed in ocean or along coastal areas, and he also proposed a vastness of time for these floods to occur.
Between 1802 and 1809, he then originated the first modern theory of evolution. It was modern in the sense that he not only acknowledged a common descent of all animals, but also proposed a naturalistic mechanism as to how evolution would work. He proposed that organisms accumulate changes over time in their organs and structures. Structures with less use grew smaller and those used more grew larger and more complex. The life-force present in organisms made the parts of organisms grow larger and the organisms change in size as well. New organs can form in response to new needs of the organism. These changes are then passed down to the animal's descendents that can accumulate greater changes. This accumulation eventually changes a species into new species and can explain the appearance and disappearance of the fossil lifeforms. The most famous of his examples is the giraffe. Supposing a drought, giraffe-ancestors had to stretch their necks to reach leaves on higher branches of trees. This stretching made their necks permanently grow longer. The slightly longer necks were passed on to their descendants whose stretching was also passed on, till the giraffes' present neck length was achieved. This theory established the mutability of species, and the inheritance of these changes. It also established a mechanism for the evolution of all species over time, allowing one species to turn into others.
As most people involved in classification, Lamarck viewed evolution in a progressive sense. Evolution was a process toward increasing complexity and mystical perfection. Like the Greek theories, he believed life progressed from simple organisms arising from spontaneous generation, developed into plants, then animals, and finally man. The cause of these changes was a striving of internal fluids toward perfection, much like Aristotle's belief in all things becoming more like the Prime Mover. A mystical need creates change and progress. Organisms evolve from the simple and grow steadily more complex, forming all species into one great chain of being. There was no extinction for Lamarck. Species as a whole turned into new species. An extinct species in the fossil record was simply one that had transformed into a new one. Thus the most advanced species are also the oldest. They have been through the entire chain of life. New simple organisms are constantly being produced through spontaneous generation, which in time will evolve into the next order of species. Further thought caused Lamarck to consider two chains of being, one for bilateral symmetric organisms and one for radial symmetric organisms. The bilateral chain was further divided into creatures with exoskeletons and those with internal skeletons, and evolution occurred as species evolved along these set paths toward complexity.
In 1794, Erasmus Darwin, Charles Darwin's grandfather, also came up with a similar theory around the same time as Lamarck, although the two were unaware of each other. Erasmus tended to anthropomorphize other organisms and aggrandize his beliefs in poetry rather then prose. In his book, Zoonomia, Erasmus acknowledged the great changes that occur in species as they grow to maturity and also the great variations that had been produced by cross breeding animals. From this, he concludes that the present species on earth probably originated from a much smaller number of original species through hybridization. Erasmus even states that male and female, including humans, were once an androgynous species with no male or female forms. He concludes this from the nonfunctioning nipples on males and Buffon's account of some human males lactating and nursing children. This being extremely rare among males of any species and usually is caused by hormone imbalances or severe inbreeding. He goes on to cite Hume that the earth itself might have been generated instead of created. He takes this to the conclusion that life would have had to originate from inorganic materials undoubtedly by the process of spontaneous generation. He published The Temple of Nature in 1803 and suggested that life originated from a common ancestor of one-celled organisms in the oceans. He also came up with Lamarck's mechanism of evolution of use and disuse of organs, but also added a secondary mechanism. He noted from observation of animals in England that females often tend to choose a male to mate with favorable traits. The traits that matter to the female changes from species to species. In bulls and horses for example, it is the strongest male. This process is sexual selection. Erasmus thought that sex offered a high chance of mutability in species allowing a great deal of variation in a species. He took an integrative approach to evolution, taking supporting knowledge from many fields such as paleontology, comparative anatomy, and embryology. In his Phytologia of 1800, he created a progressive classification system and attributed to plants brains and nervous systems, but on a lesser scale than the cold-blooded animals. Thus a scale of control and perception was made that included plants. Erasmus was ridiculed for his ideas, but was widely known enough to be mentioned by both Mary Shelly in Frankenstein in 1831, and by Coleridge.19
Thus, modern representations of the Greek theory of evolution were presented to the world with modern evidence as well as a search for modern mechanisms. However, both of these occurred in the realm of philosophy and not science. Little evidence was given and thought games as to how something might happened was the predominant means of proof. These theories also lacked a proper mechanism of adaptation aside from mystical forces. It took Erasmus grandson to come up with the first commonly accepted cause of adaptation of species.
IV. Natural Selection and Geology
In 1798, Thomas Malthus published his Essay on Population concerning the growth of human population. He produced models showing how the current increase in population was increasing at a geometric rate, or multiplying increase, while food production was increasing at an arithmetic rate, or additive increase. He theorized that human population will inevitably outrun the food supply and famine will result. Malthus further hypothesized that as population levels rise, disease, wars, and famine bring the population levels in check. Poverty, vice, and misery are therefore unavoidable. He went on to suggest draconian methods to reinforce this to prevent famine, such as creating improper sewage systems in cities to encourage disease. His paper showed the stresses that population growth and shortage can place on a species. It further showed the natural reaction of the environment to excessive population growth. Both of which would have dramatic impact on evolutionary theory.
At around the same time, Abraham Werner coalesced the observations of others into a one of the first theories of modern geology. He divided the stratified layers of rock according to a theory of how they formed. He believed there was a primary layer of igneous rock and crystalline precipitates from a global ocean before the emergence of land. Then came a transitional level of ocean sediments. Secondary layers consisted of forming mountains in this ocean and sediments laid down on their banks. Tertiary layers formed by the withdrawal of the ocean. This is the origin of the name of the tertiary period. Volcanic layers superseded previous layers and originated from volcanic activity brought on by the burning coal then believed to be heating the earth.
At around this time, Georges Cuvier came to his own conclusions based on his researches. Cuvier was an apolitical, French scientist outside of the philosophe camp. He was primarily concerned with biology and formed a theory that organisms are integrated units. As such, he did not believe in transmutation of organisms over time, since organisms were an intricately designed whole. Therefore no major changes could occur without destroying or impairing the organism. He used studies of both fossils and the recently arrived mummified animals from Egypt to show that these were both similar to modern forms of the species and that organisms in the fossil record remained static in form over time. Cuvier's belief in an integrated whole brought him to the conclusion that a part of the organism shows signs of its relationship to the whole. This led him to study vertebrates in detail and compare their structures to arrive at these relationships. In the course of this study, he founded comparative anatomy. He broke up classification into four embranchments of Vertebrata, Insecta (Anthropods), Vermes (Worms) and Radiata (Organisms with radial symmetry). By using these principles as a guide, he was able to reconstruct organisms from fragments of fossils thereby forming the foundation of paleontology. This had an unfortunate legacy in the attempt to reconstruct orgasms based on fragments, which can often produce errors. In the course of his studies of elephants, he showed that African and Asian Elephants and Woolly Mammoths all had distinct structures from one another and therefore were different species. He published these findings in 1798 and showed that Mammoths were indeed extinct, proving that animals do go extinct against the popular religious belief that God would not let species he created be wiped out.
In subsequent years, he also showed the extinction of several other species of large mammals from around the world. To explain these extinctions, Cuvier believed that the conditions on earth remained the same, but periodic `revolutions' occurred that wiped out a number of species. He believed that at least four such revolutions occurred and since no human fossils had been found at the time, he thought that humans were not present before the last catastrophe, which could have been the Biblical flood. He regarded the actual forms of these revolutions as a problem for geology. These ideas were published within a larger work on fossils in 1812.
Cuvier ridiculed the uniformatism theory as it could not explain the existence of the mammoths found in Siberia that were quickly killed and frozen solid in the ice there. He believed his own revolutions occurred quickly and violently. This would explain the sudden deaths of the mammoths and their preservation. Cuvier was directly responsible for the decline of uniformatism during his life. Other scholars would associate Cuvier's theory of revolutions with a series of global floods causing mass extinctions of species with the last flood being the one described in Genesis. This theory was called Diluvialism or Neptunism and explained the marine fossils found on the tops of mountains.
Towards the end of Cuvier's life in 1829, Charles Lyell published Principles of Geology, which was a restatement of Hutton's work. Lyell believed that only present processes and rates operating gradually should be used to explain all geological formations, reaffirming uniformatism. He also believed in an immense time scale for the earth to have formed its geology. By present processes and rates, Lyell calculated that Mt. Etna would take approximately 12,000 years to form its volcanic cones, and by his method, the Andes would take a million years to be uplifted by earthquakes. Thus the earth, according to Lyell, had gone through a continual cycle of volcanism gradually building and wearing itself down over countless millions of years. This became the theory of Vulcanism or modern Uniformatism. Lyell even mocked Cuvier's theories for their inclusion of unknown forces. He further pointed out that there were no marked lines of extinction of species and that some species survived in the fossil record for long periods until today like sharks and king crabs.
Following up on Smith's work, Lyell divided layers of strata into different supposed ages based on the amount of modern mollusk fossils found in the strata. He described layers with ninety percent of modern mollusk as belonging to the Pleistocene epoch. He divided the tertiary period into three epochs also based on the percentage of modern mollusks. Those with thirty three to fifty percent of these fossils he named the Pliocene or more recent epoch. Those with eighteen percent he named the Miocene or less recent epoch, and those with 3.5 percent he named the Eocene or dawn epoch.
Opposed to Lyell were directionalists that viewed earth processes being much more active in the past than presently. They believed either that the earth was running down as thermodynamic theories said would occur or that the earth was evolving as progressive views of life held. Those that believed the earth was running down used Joseph Fourier's theories about heat traveling from hot to cold areas to show that the earth was cooling and therefore had greater volcanic activity earlier in its history than presently. Lord Kelvin, as an example, in 1846 estimated that the Earth could not be more than 100 million years old by calculating the time a molten earth would take to cool to present levels.
Louis Agassiz arose to challenge some of these ideas. He studied in Germany in the early part of the nineteenth century and had become indoctrinated with their belief in Naturphilosophie, which sought metaphysical connections between living things. He renounced this belief but it colored the rest of his work, and like Lamarck, he favored a grand universal theory. He began his work classifying fossil fish and became a student of Curvier for the last months of that teacher's life. Even so, he viewed himself as Cuvier's successor. He maintained his teacher's belief in the fixity of species, in catastrophic periods, and his classification system. His study of fossil fish soon led to him into geology. His study of glacial markers in the Alps soon led him to find these markers over most of Europe. He published these findings in Etudes sur les glaciers in 1840. By his publication of Systeme Glaciers in 1847, he expanded these findings into a theory of an ice age that covered most of Europe and North America. He went too far by 1868 for his contemporaries, ascribing glacial remains in Brazil. However this idea has arisen again in the snowball earth theory in the present.
He also believed there was a gradation from simple to more complex forms in each of Cuvier's embranchments. He believed there was a connection between fossil age, embryology, classification, and geographic distribution. Simpler life forms therefore naturally appeared earlier in the fossil record. Additionally, he believed they were represented earliest in the embryonic development and that they were also represented at the highest latitudes. He published these beliefs in 1851 in his Essay on Classification following Buffon's theory.
Another disciple of Cuvier, Alcide d'Orbigny expanded his mentor's study of fossils and catastrophes to categorize twenty seven different biological series. He believed that each series represented a period where these organisms lived, were wiped out by a catastrophe and replaced by a new special creation of the next set of organisms. He named each of these periods as stages which are still used by geologists today. He published these ideas in 1847 in his Prodrome de Paleontologie Stratigraphique.
The ideas of Lyell and Malthus; their own experiences of tropical conditions; and the multitudes of similar animals with slight differences that live within these climates, led two men to the idea of natural selection: Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace. Charles Darwin was the grandson of Erasmus Darwin and was a member of the lower nobility. He lacked direction in life till his father planned for him to become a member of the clergy rather than a doctor as his father and uncle had. Charles attended college and was suggested for the position of botanist aboard a ship traveling to South America. This appointment was made for Charles because he would be a suitable companion for the captain of the ship, also a gentleman. Robert Fitzroy, the captain, gave Charles Lyell's recently published book as a gift at the start of the voyage. Upon reading this book, Charles became very interested in geology and became convinced that Lyell's Vulcanist theory was superior to the Neptunian one he had been exposed to at college. In Chile, he experienced an earthquake along with the effects of uplift and subsidence of the land it caused. This is turn led him to pose the theory of subsidence of islands in the creation of atolls, as the coral reefs around them rise with the rising sea level before Charles had ever seen a coral reef. Lyell's book also led Charles toward the study of fossils.
During his trip to South America and the south pacific, Charles studied the geology of the region and the species that he found there. He postulated that environmental changes can cause organisms to adapt to those changes. One of his first examples was the idea that as continents rise, the ocean sinks and animals must adapt to the change in sea level. Charles accepted the common descent that his grandfather had proposed but sought to discover a mechanism for the adaptation of organisms and how new species formed. He erroneously held the belief in a finite mystical life force that kept organisms alive and was used up as they lived similar to those of his grandfather and Lamarck. Charles developed a deistic view of nature from the French philosophers in which god decreed natural laws but then removed himself to allow the universe to operate. However, he disagreed with progressive ideas of evolution, as he saw that man was no more complex than other organisms.
In 1838, Charles read a pamphlet on animal breeding by Sir John Sebright, written thirty years earlier. In this pamphlet, he learned that weak animals do not survive long enough to pass along their traits. Also in this year, he became familiar with Malthus' theories on population. Within a few years, Charles had produced the outline of a theory in which population of a species in an area would increase till famine would kill off the less able members of the species. Nature would thereby select, as animals breeders select the traits they desire, those traits that best suit the environment. Those with the best traits would breed more and pass along these traits to their offspring. This would then make the species gradually better suited to its environment. As environmental changes occurred the species would conform to the new environment in the same way. Thus environmental and population stresses would gradually make the species adapt to the new environment becoming a new species in the process. However, he decided not to publish these ideas for fear of their reception, damage to his reputation and his fear of giving aid to atheistic revolutionaries. Much as Voltaire proposed limited religion for the protection of his class a century earlier.
In 1844, Robert Chambers anonymously published Vestiges of the Natural History of Creation that became a best-seller in England. He described a progressive transformation of the solar system though a nebular theory down to the formation of animals and eventually producing people. He reasoned that this evolution should continue socially. This was an attempt to persuade the working people of England to evolve out of their present class. Chambers was not a scientist, but the equivalent of a scientific journalist. Therefore the facts, logic and evidence in his work tend to be lacking. He did provide some evidence from fossils, comparative embryology, phrenology and experiments `proving' spontaneous generation. The entire book began about phrenology, but expanded to include a comprehensive and progressive theory of origins. Scientists universally discredited the work at the time for his spurious evidence. This was the first time that evolution was overtly used as a justification for class change. As this work caused much controversy, Chambers later wrote Explanations. A sequel in which he offered a defense for his work and criticized specialist science which could not see the grander view of the cosmos as Lamarck did. Chambers created an all-encompassing theory of the cosmos to present against the real science of the day that tended to merely study and report what actually went on around them.
In France, a new cohesive philosophy was proposed by Auguste Comte. Comte studied at the Ecole Polytechnique, which became the center of French science under Napoleon, and believed that there were three phases of history: the theological, the metaphysical, and the scientific. The theological phase was one of blind acceptance of the dictates of ancestors and the restrictions of society were defined by belief in God. His metaphysical phase was a bridge between the two with emphasis still on natural law and rights that were derived not from human rulers but from God, which no human ruler had the power to countermand. This phase however began to investigate all claims and accepted the role of deity as mere metaphor. Nature becomes the overriding deity. The scientific phase began with Napoleon and rejected even this and first causes. The concentration on solving problems regardless of human rights or the will of God becomes paramount. It concentrates on observation of reality and experimentation. Comte classified this as his Law of Three. He classified the sciences together into inorganic physics and biological physics. The superior science according to him was sociology, which would form an inclusive whole that incorporated all sciences into a useful form for humanity. Again the desire for a unified scientific theory to replace religion emerges. Comte has been viewed as the first Western sociologist with his view of interconnected social elements. His emphasis on quantitative analysis also resonates throughout the century following. The goal of science is to improve the condition of mankind. He coined the term altruism as a moral obligation above selfish needs, which was the ultimate goal of his philosophy and forming religion. This goal superceded individual rights and was akin to extreme powers of the state without regard to the individual and essentially collectivism. He published these ideas primarily in six volumes of Cours de Philosophie Positive between1830 and 1842. Comte believed that sociology was divided into two-parts: statics which defined systems as they are, and dynamics, which defined systems in accordance with their three states in history. Comte criticized the French revolution in its rejection of the old theological order without providing for a new order. The natural course was to provide a new religion based on science to replace the old. To replace the Catholic clergy, he proposed a new elite of a scientific-industrial elite. This philosophy was more completely rendered in his four volume Systeme de Politque Positive between 1851 and 1854. A year later this was translated into English. Comte's philosophy became known as positivism and had another large impact on history with its emphasis on order and progress. His positivism held sway for over thirty years influencing many others such as George Elliot and John Stuart Mills.
The dynamic new philosophies of unbridled progress of the previous fifty years set the stage for restatements of previous theories and the continued belief in progress. This was the middle of the age of Victoria where major changes were taking place in the world. Russia and the United States emancipated its slaves and serfs, while the British enfranchised their lower classes. Germany and Italy were unifying. This was the age of the middle class.
Against this background, Charles Darwin met Thomas Huxley in 1953 who had become friends with Herbert Spencer earlier. Spencer was the son of William George Spencer, the secretary of the Derby Philosophical Society that had been founded by Erasmus Darwin sixty years previously. In the next two years, Darwin conceived of the answers to two questions he had with his theory of transmutation: how species changed and how they spread to foreign landmasses. Darwin decided that species were driven into niches by competition, where they specialized to conform to the environment of their niche and became new species. This conforming pressure was produced by the environment selecting traits that allow organisms to survive best within a particular environment. This is natural selection, and he added to this his grandfather's observations of sexual selection. He further documented instances of seeds crossing oceans and animal crossings by means of rafts. Charles also hypothesized the theory of pangenesis to propose a mechanism for passing along new characteristics. Each part of the body would produce gemmules that carried these characteristics into the blood. These collected in the gonads and transferred into sperm and eggs. These would pass along the characteristics to the next generation.
With the addition of natural selection as a mechanism for evolution, the theory reached its widely accepted form, with both result and mechanism behind it. It provided a mechanistic view of the universe in which all life evolves by adaptation to their environment creating all species. It was also a viewpoint that no longer needed a creator to produce all things, and this viewpoint proved popular among many groups at the time and at the present. In 1958, Alfred Russel Wallace wrote Darwin with a similar theory and they presented their work jointly before the Linnean Society. The next year, Darwin published his book The Origin of Species By Means of Natural Selection or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life in which he presented his theory to the world. In 1860, Huxley and Joseph Hooker argued the case for evolution in a four hour long debate before the Association for the Advancement of Science. Both sides claimed victory during this debate, which consisted of each side attacking the other personally as well as their viewpoints, beginning a long trend.
In 1864, the X-Club formed to further the cause of evolution. This club had nine members, including Hooker, Huxley, and Spencer, and it held great power within the Royal Society of London. Their power within the organization was so great that within a month, their members had Darwin awarded the Copley Medal, which was the Society's greatest honor. This club also began publishing several magazines for the propagation of evolutionary theory, and its members toured to promote it across England and the United States.
In 1865, Sir Francis Galton, the cousin of Charles Darwin, published an article entitled Heredity Talent and Character, and later in 1869 the book, Hereditary Genius. Within these works, Galton theorized that mental characteristics are passed down to ancestors the same way as physical characteristics. He believed that intelligence and character were distributed statistically through a population much like height is over a bell curve. Furthermore, he believed that strong positive mental characteristics were confined to certain families who possessed the appropriate traits. He therefore viewed the common masses as expressions of mediocrity where no distinguishing characters originated from. In his book, Galton paid particular attention to ancient Athenian society as an example. He theorized that the genius of Athens was attributed to the inherited traits of its great families, and its fall was caused by intermixing of the Athenian race with immigrants. Galton went further to claim that the genius of a nation resided in the characteristics peculiar to its best families. He developed a theory he called eugenics which taught that a population could become better and more perfect by restricting the reproduction of its less perfect members and encouraging reproduction in its more spectacular families. This seemed to provide scientific evidence for pedigree and social class, rather than the more obvious conclusion that only these classes and families possessed the wealth and position necessary to enable leisure time for study and social power to enact change. Yet coming from the upper classes, these obvious conclusions were missed in favor of a natural and inherited trait.
Galton also tried to isolate and prove his cousin's theory of pangenesis. He worked with animals transfusing blood to see if the gemmules Darwin thought to be transmitted in the blood could be transferred to another animal and thereby transferring the characteristics believed to be carried. He failed in this attempt but continued his belief in the theory. Galton's influence on history is tremendous. His theories, though proven wrong, provided the basis for everything from Nazi death camps and baby mills to the foundation for graded intelligence tests, eugenics, and forced sterilization, which will be explored in more depth further on.
V. Social Darwinism
One of Darwin's central supporters was Herbert Spencer who developed evolutionary theories well before Darwin from introduction to evolution through his father who as stated previously was an officer of the philosophy club Erasmus Darwin founded. He gained ideas both from Lyell's refutation of Lamarck and his own studies in phrenology. Like Lamarck, he desired a grand theory to explain all of natural science and chose progressive evolution as a unifying force. In 1851, he published Social Statics, in which he used evolutionary and phrenological ideas to develop theories about society at large. Spencer likened society to an organism, borrowing from phrenology, and compared the functions of the parts of society to society as a whole. Like simple cells combine to form organisms, so individuals of some species combine to form super-organisms or societies. In human society, the consciousness remains with the individual rather than with this super-organism, so therefore society should be devoted to the individual rather than the individual devoted to society as in the utilitarian theories of the time. However, Spencer determined that society should not owe anything to its individuals, and it should not provide charity or relief toward its `weaker' elements such as the poor or similarly needy. These elements should be allowed to fend for themselves and nature would determine their survival. The weak should perish leaving only the strong elements, and society could thereby reach perfection. Charity then prevents the perfection of society and is a detriment. Afterall without the poor, sick, and criminals, the upper classes would be free to live in a virtual utopia.
The progressive forces behind all things result in equilibrium according to Spencer. In species, it results in an organism conforming to its environment. In an individual, it results in death, decay, and the end of progress. In society, however, it results in perfection. Spencer also attributed the mental processes of man as adaptations to their environment becoming more and more conformed to their surroundings. These ideas were expounded further the next year in 1852 in an article. It was here that he described his developmental theory. Spencer believed that mental attributes began as simple responses to sensations in lower organisms and progressed to the forming of associations. These associations led eventually to reasoning in human beings. The mind was a uniformity responding to its environment that gradually became more complex and heterogeneous while preserving its unity. Change becomes the fundamental driving force behind all thought and every mental process.
Spencer would spend the next decade arguing over evolutionary theory with T.H. Huxley and expanded his theories to encompass everything. He began to publish these theories in 1862 in his First Principles and furthered his theories in both the social and psychological realms. Spencer also formulated a methodology for the progression of society. He believed like cells, individuals join to form more complex structures. Families form clans which form tribes, which then form nations. These nations move from compulsory participation in military societies to voluntary participation in industrial societies. He then proposed a higher order which he called the ethical state in which common resources would guide the individual to reach perfection. After the publication of Darwin's theories, Spencer coined the phrase ``survival of the fittest'' to describe natural selection, and Spencer's theories of nations and society became known as Social Darwinism. This seemed to further justify Spencer's beliefs against charity and was expanded to relations between nations. Might makes right since the stronger nation is fitter and is therefore chosen by nature as more perfect and evolved in Spencer's theories. Moreover most dangerously, each nation becomes its own organism in a struggle for survival.
VI. German Materialism
Meanwhile on the continent, the destruction of the need for a Prime Mover prompted by Darwin was popular among many present and forming materialistic groups in European society. These groups believed that there was no reality except for the material world. The mind flowed from mechanisms of matter and there was no spirit. This movement was the natural outcome of the doctrines of the philosophes. One such follower of materialism was Ludwig Feuerbach who believed man created God in his own image from a combination of ideals. This caused alienation from those ideals and reduced man to an evil creature who needed the church and state for guidance and control. Religion should therefore be abolished to get rid of this alienation. In this tradition, Karl Marx, a one-time follower of Feuerbach, also believed that private property, in addition to religion, was a dehumanizing and alienating force that needed to be eliminated. This force caused men to work selfishly instead of for the good of mankind.
Marx reinterpreted history to be a series of class struggles. He believed that feudalism was replaced by capitalism as the middle class overthrew the aristocracy. The French revolution therefore was a natural flow of power from the French first and second estates to the third estate of merchants and artisans. Marx predicted this would continue to evolve within the third estate. The flow of power and wealth would continue from the bourgeoisie, the merchant class, to the common worker, the proletariat. The capitalist class of the bourgeoisie buys the labor of the proletariat, but does share the resulting profit from their labor. Marx believed that the extra labor that produced profit instilled value in the product they were producing and this extra work he called surplus labor. This by his definition is the source of profits and the means by which capitalists exploit labor. This surplus labor becomes the source of alienation of man from his own work.
Marx believed that capitalism was a more efficient system of production than feudalism, as it showed trends of a growing lower class and a shrinking upper class. Marx predicted these trends would continue. Capitalists would invest more in capital than in labor while simultaneously destroying their competition and thereby diminish their profits as defined by labor, even as the economy grew. This would cause depressions and diminish the price of labor. This would allow investment again, repeating the cycle. Wages would steadily fall. The masses would become increasing poor, the capitalists become richer and richer, and companies become larger and larger monopolies. Marx thought this would lead to a crisis as people could buy less and companies produced more products that no one could afford to buy. Capitalists would also have no where to invest their profits leading to ever worsening financial crashes. These cycles would be repeated until the price of labor diminished enough to cause a revolt among the proletariat. They would seize the means of production. This revolution would remove the bourgeoisie from power and place it into the hands of the proletariat.
After this revolution, power and wealth would be distributed equally to form a democracy of equals. This he viewed as the natural course of history. The proletariat would consolidate private property and institute communal ownership to restore humanity. This would end the alienation of man from his labor and restore the original state of nature. A more productive form of economy would originate that Marx called communism. The people would own the means of production and share equally in its wealth. Marx advocated the formation of communist political parties to steer the masses toward this end.
Marx was hostile toward religion for the same reasons that the philosophes had been a century before. Religion must be removed in order to remove its support of the current society so that it may be changed. Furthermore, he was hostile toward Christianity because of its claims that society's problem are at the individual level and not caused by the structure of society. Christianity therefore was not interested in revolting against the current forms of government and society, but maintaining them. Marx's theories taught that religion was only a panacea that took the mind off of the social situations of this world and placed it on a mythical afterlife. It was a distraction to enforce the status quo. Rejection of religion also removed religious objections and the natural rights based on them, such as right to property and even life, which would object to this process. All moral codes that might prevent revolution had to be abolished, and any act becomes permissible that would bring about the revolution. This highlights the problem of many modern social movements, in that the proposed, hypothetical future is more important than the actual, existent present. More importantly, the lives of future, unknown peoples are more highly valued than the lives and well being of people presently alive and suffering.
In 1948, Marx and his colleague Freidrich Engels coalesced these ideas into the Communist Manifesto. In this, they expressed their emphasis on class struggles and showed an evolutionary progression from the concentration of wealth and power from the hands of one man, the monarch, to a greater and greater proportion of society. Yet it went beyond this as viewing the entire universe as a whole that was evolving from less complex forms in jumps to more complex forms. Each jump occurs as small changes occur and build up till resistance is formed and a struggle between old and new occurs. The new changes eventually become stronger overcoming the old and producing a new and more complex quality in revolutions. This was Feuerbach's interpretation of Hegel in analyzing things through a mechanism of thesis-antithesis-synthesis paradigm. Any thesis would provoke its antithesis and then they would achieve a synthesis. As with the French philosophers, religion had to be destroyed to destroy the present society, even violently, and create a new one. Marx stated this in his philosophy and saw atheism as a primitive form of his communism. The new core of society would be secular and the new religion would be humanism, a religion of man. The end result of this new secular religion would be collective happiness and equality for mankind.
In 1860, Darwin's book was published in German. Marx read and seized on evolutionary theory both because it paralleled his work in economic theory and as a biological and cosmological explanation for life other than through religion. With evolution, the question of origins could be diverted away from religion and entirely toward natural causes. There would no longer be a scientific need for god or religion. Marx proposed both were myths. He therefore jumped at the idea and gave his support, in his goal of creating a secular, atheistic society. Thus Marx embraced evolutionary theory not only to provide a scientific backing for his worldview, but as an expansion of his own theories. The conflicts and struggles for existence are the same as the struggle of the proletariat. Marx noted that the freedom of the English system of economy and politics was merely a partial restoration of the state of nature.
The next year in 1861, the jurist Johann Jakob Bachofen described a legal and social theory of culture and law in Das Mutterrecht, or Mother Right. In this work, he postulated four successive phases of culture that mankind progressed through. The first stage was the tellurian phase in which men and women engaged in sex with multiple partners. He associated each stage with a primordial god or goddess, which was thought to be the ancestral idea of more evolved gods in several divergent cultures. He associated his supposed tellurian phase with a proto-Aphrodite of unrestrained promiscuity. Bachofen proposed that this was the primeval state which then evolved into an agricultural culture dominated by women. Descent and ownership could only be traced through the individual's mother and thus women were exalted to a position of prominence. Agriculture emerged with a lunar cycle as well as religion and law. The proto-Demeter arose as the head deity during this phase. A conflict emerged creating a Dionysian phase in which matriarchal traditions transferred to patriarchal. Men formed monogamous relationships with women and descent could then be traced through the father. A proto-Dionysus god became dominant. As the patriarchy became dominant, an Apollonian phase emerged. The solar calendar emerged as previous culture submerged into modern civilization. The sun-god became the dominant deity. Bachofen's theory had a large impact on the founding of sociology and the role of women in society. Engels later incorporated Bacofen's theories into his own and Marx's views of communism, as he believed that private property was a later creation of the Apollonian phase.
Around the same time in Germany another member of the materialist school, Ernst Haeckel began his work. He is perhaps the most influential person in history that no one ever heard of. His work would mold science in Germany for a century and would be instrumental in forming psychology. It would also contain a multitude of errors. As a member of the materialist school, he believed that all things could be explained by material forces and that there was no supernatural realm that impacted on nature. Nature was all that was. He therefore desired a non-Christian society according to this philosophy, and Darwin's book provided a mechanistic view of the biology for him to build off. He developed his own theories of evolution and became an ardent apostle of evolution in Germany. He did this for religious and philosophical reasons, wanting again to fulfill Lamarck's dream of a grand unified philosophy of the world. To support this new theory, he published his own work, the History of Creation in 1868. In this, he created a synthesis of Darwinist and Lamarckist forms of evolution and formed a progressive view of evolution like the chain of being. Organisms were arranged from lowliest amoebae to the highest form of man.
Using his own background in medicine, he decided that evolution would take place mainly in embryonic development. An embryo would make a leap into a new stage and form another new species. This became Haeckel's law of terminal addition. Any species would also progress through the previous stages that it went through to reach its own stage of evolution. Thus, a human embryo would go through all previous stages of evolution such as invertebrate, fish, amphibian, and mammal stages before it develops into a human. This became Haeckel's biogenic law, which states that the progression of growth of the embryo, its ontogeny, goes through phases similar to the evolution of its species, its phylogeny. Haeckel believed that the ontogeny therefore recapitulates phylogeny. His law of correspondence states that there is a relationship between each stage of an embryo's development and the adult form of that stage in violation of von Baer's law. He also added the law of truncation, which meant that the gestation period of any embryo is shortened from the total time its predecessors would take. Thus, an embryo added a new stage and would speed up its total gestation period. This was necessary to explain why gestation periods did not grow with the addition of each stage and to explain why many of the phylogenic phases did not appear in all embryos' ontogenies. Haeckel divided classification between single-celled organisms which he named Monera and organisms which begin as single celled organisms and divide to become multicellular, which he classified as Protista. He also hypothesized using this biogenic law in reverse, that there was an original multicellular organism he named a gastrula, since most organisms pass through this stage in their ontogeny.
Haeckel provided evidence for his theory by showing most famously how human embryos developed `gill slits' during their supposed fish stage and tails during their supposed primate stage. He also purposely altered other people's drawings of embryos of different species to make them look as if they were more similar then they are, and he purposely choose species that look more similar naturally rather than those with dissimilar embryos, which would not support his theory. However, this provided the embryological evidence for evolution for a number of decades even though this evidence was manufactured even appearing in textbooks in recent times.
Haeckel's theories also centered on the human species as all classification efforts have been. He believed in twenty-six stages of speciation altogether with the last being mankind. In his work, Haeckel divided mankind into eleven races descended from one race. He proposed that man originated on a supposed submerged continent of Lemuria. This mythical continent was invented by Phillip L. Schlater to explain the distribution of lemurs in accordance with Darwin's theory. Haeckel placed man's ancestors there to conveniently explain the lack of fossils for man's ancestors at the time. He also proposed that the twenty-first stage of evolution was a missing link between man and ape, which created the search for this supposed missing link in the late 1800's and throughout the twentieth century. Haeckel's evolution was a progression from lowest to highest species with each species developing from the one below it. He applied this to his races of man also, with European races being the highest of all human races as most human groups believe they are the best. This created an essentially racist point of view. Haeckel made the first attempts at general morphology and the creation of a genealogical tree of evolution. These are now standard today shown as trees connecting species and genera to supposedly related ones. These then branch back to a common ancestor and then the monera group.
He also extended evolution into realms outside of biology as part of a desire for a more comprehensive theory. He once again sought out the grand theory of Lamarck. As with most progressive evolutionary theories, man is placed as the apex of evolution and therefore mental powers are the standard by which advancement is judged. For Haeckel, rationality was this standard, and he also applied this to race and culture. Europeans were more rational than other cultures and therefore more advanced. Haeckel even went so far as to claim that other races are closer to higher mammals than they are to being European, and he made illustrations in his books to reinforce this belief. African races were depicted as being close to dogs and apes physiologically. He did not believe that the value of life of these lower classes of humans were on the same level as Europeans. He used the term Aryan to denote the root race that Europeans supposedly descended from, taking this from the linguistic group being theorized at the time, which was later replaced with the Indo-European language family. Germans of course were the highest race of all, and Haeckel classified Jews as being among the lower races. He even supposed that Jesus Christ was not Jewish, but fathered by a Roman soldier (from Germany even) because his philosophy was too highly wrought to be Jewish. Thus anti-Semitism became a scientific reality rather than a mere social prejudice. He gave historical examples of German superiority by such things as the German defeat of the Roman Empire at the turn of the first millennium, in accordance with the beliefs of Social Darwinism. He believed that German might made right. Women and children were also classified as lower than adult males and on the level of lower races. Haeckel attempted to give evidence of this by comparing the physiology of women and children to African skulls, which he had already grouped with higher mammals. Thus in accordance with his theories, the adults of lower races are as progressed as the children of higher races much as chimps are compared intellectually to children today.
He also applied Darwin's natural selection to race. He believed higher races are in competition, an eternal struggle or kampf, to survive and prosper. For the higher races to achieve their destiny, the lower races must be pruned. For higher culture to evolve, the influence of the lower cultures must be removed. Lower races and cultures hamper the ability of higher races to achieve their progressive destiny. To not purge a higher race of the impurities of lower races was to hamper it and cause it to fall back into an intermediate form. Examples were given of the Americas where North America was colonized largely of European people unmixed with `lower' races and South America where European and native races mixed freely. South America was less developed industrially, and this lack of development was a consequence of its racial mixing. It's culture was therefore underdeveloped and less evolved in an embryonic sense, whereas North America was more industrialized as a consequence of its unmixed race. It was more developed and more evolved.
Haeckel also formed a pantheistic belief as part of his unified theory. To this end,
he borrowed from the writings of the sixteenth century mystic Giordano Bruno, as well as those of both Spinoza and Geothe. Bruno and Haeckel both hoped to create a new religion, and Bruno took his basis from several Greek influences such as Plato, Stoicism, and Hermes Trismegistus. He believed that the universe was one natural whole and infinite, and that there was a universal spirit that inhabited this whole. An analogy was made of the universe being the body and this spirit its soul. Bruno believed that this spirit and the material universe were emanations of the same thing, God. Also, all matter had a portion of this universal spirit residing within it. Each soul when the form it inhabited died would return to being part of the universal soul. Bruno also believed in a utterly transcendent deity, akin to that of Plato's ideal, outside the universe, but believed no proof could be offered of its existence.
Baruch Spinoza was a philosopher in the 1600's who sought to disprove Cartesian philosophy. He constructed a geometric proof of axioms and deductions concerning the nature of god. In his axioms, he assumes that god is merely an infinite substance. This first assumption already goes against Christianity by assuming that God has substance and begging the question as to whether God is the universe. This also is directly in conflict exalting the creation above the creator, assuming they are illogically one in the same. He also assumes things called attributes exist like Plato's forms. An example of an attribute would be three-dimensionality. For Spinoza this is an infinite attribute of the universe and indicates its substance. From this he concludes naturally within his framework that god must be the sum total of all attributes and therefore must be all substance or the universe. He goes on to argue essentially that god's actions are universal and perfect and local events are only side effects of these. God does not control local natural events. God therefore does not act with purpose and also does not make value judgments. God does not determine good and evil, beauty or order. These things are only human judgments. Thus according to Spinoza, there is no good or evil except as man determines. All things then are determined by their nature and therefore all things are good.
Haeckel took Bruno's philosophy and simply removed the transcendent deity. The universe was all that was and nothing existed apart from it, and the universal spirit was the only god in accordance with Spinoza. This god was fully immanent in all things: all matter, all forces, all energy, all human souls and even the laws by which the universe operates. In his view, god is in all things and all things have the spark of the divine. Since nature was god, science and religion must therefore become one and this religion Haeckel called Monism from the oneness of all things. Animals evolved from inanimate matter and therefore they too were part of this unity. All such categories flowed from one to the other and are related. Thus man and animal, animal and plant, living and non-living, divine and mundane are all one substance. There is only one thing, the cosmos and this cosmos is unfolding and progressing toward a higher state. The influence of this religion and its impact on culture can still be felt today in science fiction like Star Trek and popular movements such as New Age beliefs. These propose science, instead of the limited tool it is, as the new religion, as Haeckel did, and that mankind is evolving toward some final state. This usually takes a nonphysical form allying itself with the ``mystic'' forms of various religions that seek to know god from within. Both see this next transition as a nonphysical form of energy with greater awareness of the universe. The mystic cults however equate this with union with a god who is generally defined as nothingness and the antithesis of individuality. Others might equate this as becoming one with the universe.
Furthermore, Haeckel believed that humans are subject to the same laws of survival of the fittest and like Spencer, Haeckel translated this belief politically. The state should be viewed like an organism, with its individuals merely cells of the state. Individuals should then submit their wills to the state for the good of the state, their race and the whole. The state, like an organism, can shed thousands of these cells for the good of the whole. Combined with racial purity, this becomes a formula for atrocity. Culture then was also placed on a progressive scale. So called `primitive' cultures were adolescent forms of `higher' cultures like the European. Each culture then could make the jump forward to a higher culture, and lower cultures must be treated like children by the higher civilizations. These ideas would be taken to the next logical step by the psychologists.
This coincided with both the nationalist feelings in Germany and the Romantic Movement going on at the time. These views were innately Romantic as they promoted a connection with nature and nationalistic as they promoted the German race being the most evolved on earth. Furthermore, the Germans could achieve perfection by removing lesser races from breeding with pure Germans. This was then adopted by the Volkish movement in Germany. This movement sought to form a unified `German' culture with the aim of creating a unified German state, as at the time, there existed only a large confederation of small German states in the Holy Roman Empire, which was dominated by Austria. Through his science, his religion, and the Volkish movement, Haeckel's influence on the world has been both astounding and devastating, although he himself is hardly known outside of Germany.
Like Haeckel, Friedrich Nietzche also belonged to the materialist school. His first work was The Birth of Tragedy in 1872 as a philology chair at the University of Basil. In this work drawing on the work of J.J. Bachofen, he formed a theory of Greek Drama that would shape his career and form the basis for his theory of both art and man. Nietzche created a theory of two opposing forces within man: reason and passion, represented by the Greek gods Apollo and Dionysus. When these two forces are blended, passion is controlled by reason, and man achieves unity with the primordial mystery.
After resigning from the University to concentrate on philosophy, Nietzche published his seminal work, Thus Spake Zarathrusta, 1883-85. Within this work, he took his previous philosophy to the next step. Drawing upon various German contemporary philosophies including Haeckel and Bachofen, Nietzche believed individuals could tap into the primal forces of Dionysus controlled by Apollo and rise above the common masses of people. They become supermen who are the next level of evolution above humans. This would be a synthesis of Bachofen's past and present. They would be responsive to their own vision and create their own morality. They would not be bound by the will of the masses. He viewed the common people as herd animals who would be controlled by these new supermen. They would be driven by an internal need Nietzche called the will to power. This will would not only control the Dionysian fervor within them but control their surroundings and the herd-pack of common humans. The morality of the herd must be rejected to achieve this growth to superman status and so Christianity and religion must be abandoned. Nietzche viewed religion, as the materialist current dictated, as a suppressing force to control the masses. Like with Marx, Christianity was only a means to control the people and suppress their desires with promises of heavenly reward. Democracy was also a means to suppress the creativity of this future class of superman. The will of the herd must be overcome by the will to power. The Christian god must be viewed as dead to these new supermen. The superman must be entirely concerned with the material world.
He furthered his views of the superman in Beyond Good and Evil in 1886. He reinforced the views that Christian morals and beliefs were those of the slave and herd. Ironically Nietzsche began to decline most probably from syphilis in his last years, which Christian morality would have prevented his acquiring this disease to begin with. A collection of essays were edited and published after his death in 1901 by his sister, Elizabeth, who had very strong leanings toward the volkish and anti-Semitic movements. She steered Nietzche's writings toward this end and helped provide a more philosophic background for Nazism later. She endorsed both the German involvement in the First World War and later endorsed Hitler proclaiming him to be an example of the superman.
Wilhelm Bolsche, a disciple of Haeckel, expanded the biogenic law and added that sexual sensitivity followed the phylogenic sequence. In his sequence, this sensitivity advanced from the skin of the gastrea and followed the invagination of the embryo. It then advanced from this `skin' to the forming mouth and then flowed to the forming rectum which represented the `primitive cloaca.' The sensitivity then moved from the rectum to the genitalia. This path followed the capability of reproduction in animals from occurring at the mouth to the anus to the genitals. This in turn would lead to the psychologists to follow.
Haeckel's theories of culture, Bolsche's theories, and Nietzche's theories of dual forces within man would in turn lead directly to Sigmund Freud's psychological theories in the last decade of the nineteenth century. Freud turned Bolsche's theory of the recapitulation of sexual stimulation into his own theory of the progression of sexual desire. This desire progressed through stages of skin, mouth, anus, and genitals in the infant. He believed that human recapitulation also moved from the embryological stage, throughout human development. For Freud, humans went through psychosexual phases corresponding to their phylogenic development. He believed the oral stage came from recapitulation of species whose sexual organs reside in the mouth, like hydras and jellyfish. Humans then recapitulate the sexuality of species whose sexual organs reside in the cloaca or anus, such as reptiles and birds to form the anal stage. `Higher' species are then recapitulated and sexual function turns to the genitalia. Freud traced all `perversions' to retarded development of this recapitulation.
Traces of recapitulation theory resonate throughout modern science belief in various forms. The separation of `base' desires and emotions from `higher' rationality comes from these and similar theories. The desires and emotions are attributed to lower stages coming from recapitulation of animal stages. Higher rationality comes from the last stage. The negative things in human nature such as anger and hate therefore come from these earlier stages of recapitulation. Like Freud, they attribute psychological disorders to arrested development and being stuck in these stages. Remnants of this theory still occur in modern times in separation of a reptilian and mammalian brain and the belief that emotion and desires must come from the reptilian part. This was proven to be incorrect and that such emotions and desires originate over the entire structure of the so-called mammalian brain rather than limited to a primal area.
Freud thought that instinctual drives from our ancestral species use objects to release instinctual tensions. Failure to release these tensions forms blockages in `psychic energy' which cause problems in the human psyche. He theorized that a psychic energy he called libido forms the drive to reproduce. This releases itself through the mouth, anus, and genitalia during the various stages he proposed. Failure to allow a child to release this energy would cause a blockage and trap or fixate the person in that stage. Freud borrowed the concept of the unconsciousness from Edward Von Hartmann. For Harmann, the unconsciousness was the cosmic will of Schopenhauer manifest in every individual. It is the source of individual will and desire. These forces then are enacted by the conscious individual minds. Freud turned this into a hidden source for all our desires and drives.
Freud hypothesized a structure for the human psyche in two drives: ego and libido. Ego strives to preserve the self and libido strives to preserve the race being a sexual drive. By his 1914 paper, On Narcissism, He renamed these into two new drives: the Ego and the Id. The Ego was the higher individualistic drives and the Id was the ancestral drives toward the race and contained the libido. Six years later, Freud again changed his dualistic drives to concentrate on drives toward life, or Eros, and those toward death, or Thanatos. These became manifestations of evolution and regression, progress and reaction. These drives again compared the universal forces of attraction and repulsion. Decay, destructiveness, regression and death were linked to human drives to return to earlier states both temporal and spatial. Psychoanalysis became a method for releasing pent up instinctual drives and releasing individuals from their retention in phylogenic stages.
Freud also used his psychoanalytical methods to examine religion. He viewed belief in god and the supernatural as an illusion in the sense of being non-rational as his materialistic doctrine predetermined. Religion was an impediment to civilization and science should be the unifying and explaining force. Freud being a militant atheist desired morals without religion. However his theories were still grounded in the errant Haeckel-Lamarckian theories. Earlier civilizations were primitive and child-like. He compared narcissism to a stage of early man like infants who believed that personal actions could affect their greater environment. Magical acts could thereby change the weather and other natural phenomenon.
At the same time in 1913's Totem and Taboo, Freud imagined that originally mankind was comprised of small animal-like tribes. In these imagined tribes, they were ruled by a dominant male like wolves or dogs. This male possessed all the females of the tribes as wives, and the other males were at once grateful and loving of this alpha male for his protection and jealous of his sexual dominance. This was Freud's primal horde. The jealous males then killed the alpha male to possess the females for themselves. This produced guilt at what they had done and they substituted an animal that represented the alpha male. The alpha male ascends to low-level god status. The animal becomes the tribes' totem animal and they vowed not to kill this animal. This eventually became a general law not to kill. They also vowed not to take the alpha male's wives and so had to seek other wives outside of the tribe. Thus incest was prohibited as the second moral law. This is despite the fact that incest was known to have persisted in advanced, ancient societies through Roman times. Royal families in Rome and Egypt ritually practiced direct incest by brother and sister marrying. Modern European royal lines also practiced intermarrying among close family members.
Freud supposed his fanciful tale not only to have actually happened but repeatedly over the course of the majority of human tribes. This occurrence was then recapitulated in every human male's development. Freud conceived of a phallic stage between the anal and genital stages where this would re-occur. This phallic stage was marked by the child envying his father and desiring his mother sexually. This Freud called this the Oedipal complex named after the Greek myth of Oedipus who killed his father and took his mother as a bride unknowingly.
In 1930, Freud formed a broader social theory with Civilization and its Discontents. Within this work, He seems to draw heavily on some of Nietzche's ideas although Freud claimed they were original. Both used the term sublimation to refer to the transference of the sex drive to social activities such as art or civilized pursuits. Freud went further to suggest that sex is incompatible with civilization. This stems from his separation of higher and lower drives. The lower reproductive drive can not produce the higher drives of civilization in opposition to Christian ideas that sex in marriage should be the foundation of creation of family and society. He believed that created conflict between the wife and husband over the loss of sexual interest and conflict between the family and society.60 Of course neither the oedipal conflict nor any of Freud's sexual emphasis has been proven by modern developmental psychology and the entire theory is based again on the disproved theories of recapitulation which do not occur. Yet Freud's psychopsychology and its psychoanalytic method continue today as a pseudoscience that does not adhere to any actual scientific processes.
Karl Jung was also part of the materialist sentiments in Germany at the time. He believed that the natural state of humanity was paganism, and it lost its foundation when it became civilized and Christian. When infants are born they also are pagans and become overlaid with the civilized monotheism of Christianity. This results in a lack of wholesomeness and lack of roots. Rousseau's philosophy can be seen here. Jung thought that one can regain this by going underneath the Christian memories to the pagan unconsciousness underneath, which was much closer to Van Hartmann's view of a single unconsciousness than Freud's version. Borrowing from Freud, he saw psychoanalysis as a means to reach this unconsciousness.
Jung also became affected deeply by a psychoanalyst he was treating for drug addiction named Otto Gross between 1907 and 1908. Gross was also a follower of Bachofen and determined that the polygamous nature was still an ancestral drive and suppression of this drive by civilization is harmful. Breaking of family, societal, and civilized boundaries would make the individual healthier. Jung initially resisted his patients' beliefs, but was eventually won over to Gross' side. Jung incorporated this into his struggle to reach pagan origins. He began a polygamous lifestyle and believed that in order to reach the subconscious all societal bounds must be broken by transgressing them.
Jung also relied heavily on Haeckel's biogenic theory as his primary method to understand human development. Jung believed that stages of human culture were reflected in the various stages of human growth and in the human mind. By 1909, he theorized that the lowest stage of recapitulation would correspond to Freud's narcissistic stage where magic and mythology ruled, which in turn would be the lowest level of the unconscious for Jung. In this phylogenic unconsciousness as he called it, the mind would actually contain all the thinking, myth and mythology of the pre-Christian pagan world imprinted on it in almost a platonic manner. This seemed to explain the many mythic symbols he discovered in his patients' dreams and analyses, but Jung ignored the fact that these symbols were widespread in the Volkish movements and similar publications at the time. All such symbols are culturally derived as symbols can have opposite meanings in different cultures. The swastika in Western culture has Nazi overtones, yet in Indian cultures has more mystical and peaceful overtones and therefore is not universal.
Jung continued in Freud's psychopsychology till 1913, when he created his own movement which he called analytic psychology. Jung changed the name of the phylogenic unconsciousness to the collective unconsciousness. He also purposefully shifted the emphasis from recapitulated evolutionary experience to recalled platonic images or archetypes. During this period, Jung also became heavily involved in spiritualism and participated in rituals where he acted as medium for disembodied voices. These practices would become embodied in his treatment methods. The practice of `active imagination' was developed since the disembodied voices in such rituals must come from within. These are deliberately induced visionary experiences that Jung engaged in where he would meet mythological characters who insisted on their reality. Jung would descend to the `land of the dead' where these characters lived. This would become the basis for Jung's psychotherapy. The phylogenic layers of Judeo-Christianity must be cut through to reach the collective unconsciousness where this pagan land of the dead existed and then this must be revitalized. Within this process, the self becomes deified. This collective unconsciousness is nothing more than the spirit world of occultists. Jung's mythological characters become their spirit guides clothed in scientific terms, and the process of spiritualism becomes Jungian analysis. Jung even had one particular spirit guide named Philemon. Jung naturally became involved with the various Volkish groups in Germany with their interest in ancient German myth outside of the Judeo-Christian traditions.
Evolutionary psychology even reached into America with G. Stanley Hall who founded the American Psychological Association. Hall believed in the recapitulation of previous human cultures and behaviors similar to Jung. He proposed stages like Freud with humans going through an animal stage till age four, a hunting and fishing stage like primitive cultures from four to eight, a tribal stage from eight to twelve, then mirroring eighteenth century idealism from twelve to twenty five, and past twenty five entering a stage recapitulating modern civilization. Before the nineteenth century, humans would be stuck in a tribal stage. Hall counseled patients to ignore the bad behavior of children as they would simply grow out of it.
The idea of evolution of culture by jumps within the individual is perhaps the most insidious idea to arise out of evolution. It harkens back to the ideas of phrenology of people being born bad. It can easily be aimed at ethnicities other than those of the scientists in question as the racial element becomes clear, associating non-white cultures as less evolved stages of culture. It encourages treatment of non-white races as less developed and being subhuman. Its most dramatic effect is its continuing trend in American psychology through our own time, resurfacing in the suggestions of Dr. Spock and others to avoid punishment of children. This errant belief has even worked into the legal system condemning physical punishment of children as abuse. The `scientific' condemnation of imposing morality and punishment on children in the mistaken belief that they would grow out of it has undoubtedly assisted in the degradation of morality in the last few decades. Perhaps, it has even caused the development of the resistance to punishment of criminals in American society where criminals need to be educated rather being punished for their acts.
The direct effects of over a century of psychology based on errant science can only be imagined. Many American children were not disciplined and did not grow out of their bad behavior, which instead tended to intensify. The patients of Jung's followers were immersed in occult practices and told to break their moral boundaries. Patients of Freud who reported incestual crimes were even dismissed as mere repressed fantasies. However the effects of evolution and Haeckel's dogma in particular would have a far graver impact on world history.
At the same time in Great Britain and the United States, another great movement that adopted evolution as a central precept. This movement was liberalism. It was conceived from the Romantic and Humanist movements with their overwhelming belief that man was the measure of all things. Its aim was to improve the individual human condition, and it arranged itself into two camps: one conservative or ``classic'' and the other more liberal or ``social''. The classic camp placed it's emphasize on the individual, while the social one emphasized government action as a means of reform.
Classic liberalism was championed by evolutionists such as Spencer and Huxley in England and William Graham Sumner in the United States. They tended to support laissez-faire policies believing society will work out its own ills in its own struggle for existence. The poor and over-populated of Malthus would eliminate themselves without a welfare system. Both evolutionary movements enhanced themselves by wresting control of the education system from its originator, the Christian churches.
Huxley was instrumental in converting the British education system into a state-run system that virtually excluded religion. One of the major debates over this creation was whether the Bible should even be read within the schools, only being the most referenced and influential book in Western history. Huxley's own view was that a version edited to remove all unscientific portions removed was to be read, however his view was overruled in favor of the full version.
In the United States, Andrew Dickson White held a similar role. He was a state senator and educator in New York who was instrumental in the founding of Cornell University in 1865 and served as its first president. This was the first University in the United States to be founded on a non-religious and even anti-religious basis. White also helped to create the modern conflict theory that claimed there existed a conflict between science and religion with historical evidence to support this view. As shown, this was merely a rehashing of Voltaire's propaganda. His work culminated in his 2 volumes on the subject: A History of the Warfare of Science with Theology in Christendom in 1896. This work sought to show a victorious fight of science over ``religious'' ideas, but more often the case were shown to be superstitions, Greek philosophy, or even other scientific beliefs. It also contained many enduring myths such as Columbus having to fight against the belief the world was flat in his time and even a false connection that religion was against sanitation, rather than the reverse that Malthusian `science' rallied against. Anyone who has read the Bible's belief in cleanliness in personal, household and food would know the lack of medieval sanitation was not theological in nature. White continued to serve an active part in politics as well, serving as ambassador a few times and chairing the United States delegation to the first Hague conference. He was also instrumental in convincing Carnegie to build the Palace of Justice for the Hague Tribunal, which was the first semblance of an international court of law quite in line with liberal theory.
Sumner was a Yale professor who popularized Spencer's social Darwinism in the United States beginning in the 1870's. He tried to chart the development of customs in society and coined the term folkways. He also coined the term mores to describe customs related to family, sex, and religion that if disobeyed incurs the sanction of society. Sumner championed individual liberty and laissez-faire capitalism. He was one of the first to propose that genius was a hereditary trait and if society was left to its own devices, a genius class would evolve followed by a talented class. The mass of population would be one of mediocrity with a bottom class of defectives and criminals. If the government did not interfere, the bottom class would eliminate themselves, while allowing the first two classes to rise to predominance. Science would look behind the scenes to develop an absolute view of society rather than the cultural relativism the social liberals espoused and in opposition to institutions and mores based on religion. He did however become concerned over the mass accumulation of wealth by some in his lifetime and warned that this could result in a plutocracy whereby wealth determines all.
This camp gradually lost popularity in favor of the more socially liberal progressive movement around the turn of the century. However, it periodically revived itself. Most notably in the form of Ayn Rand's philosophy which takes this a step forward in her philosophy of objectivism. Rand escaped the forming communist state of Russia and became a novelist and screenwriter in the United States. She formed a lifelong dislike of the collectivism of the Russian state and idealized individualism in reaction. Rand thought mankind fell into two groups, those that follow and those that lead. The followers must subjugate themselves to the group and can only aspire to the success of the group. Those that lead follow their own creativity and fail or succeed by their own means and responsibility. She also viewed altruism in a negative light, believing self-sacrifice was also a selfish act, and that government inspired altruistic programs were robbing the ``leaders'' to benefit the masses of the group who do not deserve such benefits. Progressive government programs that tax the rich in order to provide welfare to the poor are taking away the rewards for taking the risks of leading in order to benefit those that take no risks and merely follow according to Rand's view.
On the other hand, social liberalism found its first mass-movement in the progressive movement in the United States at the turn of the century. Their goal was to reconstruct society on a scientific basis. To control the excesses of the laissez-faire economy, the government should intervene. Experts in specific fields should set policy, and the doctrine of efficiency was also introduced with cost-analysis. The progressive movement formed into a political party which counted as among its supporters Theodore Roosevelt. Roosevelt emphasized many progressive policies and instituted social reforms through the power of the government. He sought to regulate and destroy existing monopolies, set up the national forestry service that set aside the first national forests, and also established the right of the government to regulate natural resources.
The progressive movement however held a parental tone toward lesser powers and the individual as could be expected. Roosevelt emphasized the racial prejudices shared by the progressive movement. Superior nations had the duty and right to treat the inferior ones as children in the name of civilization. This led to his support for the Spanish-American war, which asserted the United States dominion over the Caribbean in place of Spain's influence, and his encouragement of civil war separating Panama from Columbia to further American military ambitions to build a canal through the region. This led in later decades to the parental doctrines toward Latin America and later the world, replacing regimes, supporting wars, and interfering with governments. The European powers did likewise dividing Africa and Asia into colonies and spheres of influence. This would cause much resentment toward these powers in the future from these areas for perceived wrongs.
These progressive ideas were directed inward in the United States and England to the general populace as well. The government for the first time took on a parental role in protection of the populace from business, creating laws governing the health and safety of products, food, and drugs. It further went down a course to use income taxes to redistribute wealth and creating social policies to provide various forms of welfare assuming individuals could not provide for themselves. In the present decade, this enlargement of the government has further continued to expand into the daily life of citizens in the name of protection for the populace, assuming they can not protect themselves. This same movement also took on a darker tone in a movement based on Galton's ideas of evolution and eugenics.
After Darwin the discoveries of two men should have severely limited the extent of evolution, but instead both were incorporated into evolutionary theory. The first was August Weismann who while first accepting the contemporary views of inheritance, experimentally disproved both of them. Darwin believed organisms changed by direct action of the environment and these changes translated internally to their sex organs via pangenesis. Lamarck believed that these same changes originated by use and disuse of organs. Both thereby believed that hereditary was a function of acquired changes. Weismann began to suspect the inheritance of this to be wrong earlier than 1883 when he delivered a lecturing saying that this theory could not explain the existence of caste animals like ants, where most do not reproduce. He came up with his own theory of germ plasm and used this theory to replace explanations for Darwin's examples of use and disuse. Weismann divided organisms into somatic cells incorporating their body and germ cells which created the next generation and carried the information to do so. He conceived a barrier between the two which is called the Weissman barrier, which does not allow translation of acquired characteristics to the germ cells. His germ plasm theory stated that the nuclear parts of cells were responsible for inheritance, were separated from somatic cells, and germ cells originated unchanged from the zygote. Weismann preferred this conclusion to the other logical assumptions like that germ cells could reform from somatic cells.
In an often depicted experiment, He cut off the tails of many generations of mice to show how surgical procedures did not translate to the next generation. This did not, however, disprove inheritance of acquired traits as Weismann knew, since the traits of Darwin and Lamarck required natural changes rather than mutilations or surgery. It has been noted this particular experiment was unnecessary as circumcision and cutting of dog's ears and tails had already shown themselves not to be inherited and Weismann performed this procedure merely to experimentally prove this.
This work led to the rediscovery of Gregor Mendel's work, the second man. Mendel offered mathematical laws that described how traits are passed down from parent to offspring. These laws defined a continuance of traits and the variation these traits represented based on probabilities of already possessed traits appearing in organisms. These genetic laws formed a stability of traits over generations that could not change, except for chance mutations. This changed the focus of evolution from depending on these rare and chance mutations rather than the natural variations within a species and acquired characteristics could not directly be passed down to the next generation.
These events should have effectively killed the idea of common descent as Darwin's idea of infinite mutability of species as shaped by natural variation within a species was replaced by exact mathematical models of the exact continuance of preexistent traits both shown and hidden without change over time. This ever-present and observed, natural variation of traits was no longer a mystery and the source of evolution, but rather rare and chance mutations became the only source for evolutionary change. This became the sole cause of acquisition of additional traits which because they were mutations had nothing to do with direct action of the environment. Natural selection instead of becoming a force acting on species directly, became an indirect chooser of which rare mutations to preserve.
However, attempts to reconcile these laws into the theory of evolution were made in what became known as the Neo-Darwinism or the Modern Synthesis, primarily in the work of Ronald Fisher, J.B.S. Haldane, and Sewall Wright. These men used Mendelian laws of inheritance to form mathematical models of how traits would spread in populations. They then used models to come to different theories about how evolution works within a population. They formulated how natural selection and chance factors such as mutations and random genetic drift could spread through a species. These men came up with the idea that traits are inherited as packets of alleles, or potential traits, called genes, and that new species are formed by the gradual accumulation of small genetic changes over time. Their work brought Darwinism down to the genetic level, formulating changes as they would occur through a population and how these changes might take place.
The idea also arose because of their work that random chance plays a significant role in evolution. Organisms may pass on traits because of luck rather than fitness. Natural disasters can cause a change in gene frequency in a population, which is known as bottlenecking. Random chance over time can make one trait more persistent due to incremental random chance passing that trait on to the next generation in a slightly higher percentage. A familiar example of this, although a self-correcting one, is that human females are often born in slightly higher percentage than human males. The founder effect was also brought to light, wherein a small group breaks away from the main population to colonize a geographically distinct region. This group then becomes inbred to produce a distinct race from the larger population.
At the same time this was occurring, the Eugenics movement grew in popularity from Galton's first application of evolution to human population and would eventually see the application of Mendel's laws in the United States and Great Britain. This movement sought to form a more perfect race of humans by increasing reproduction of people with desirable traits or decreasing reproduction of people with undesirable traits. One problem was that these defined traits often were formed along class lines, such as those formed by level of education and social position.
The first major supporter in the United States was Alexander Graham Bell during the 1890's. He believed wrongly that the trait of deafness was hereditary and advocated restrictions on breeding of deaf people, even though his wife herself was deaf. Bell also was against the use of sign language as a means to eliminate deaf people socializing and encouraging social interaction between deaf people. Additionally, he was one of the first to advocate restriction of immigration to prevent contamination of the gene pool with more deaf people, and he believed incorrectly that deaf schools could produce a sub-race of deaf humans.
Mendel's laws were soon applied to eugenics in the tracing of various desirable and undesirable traits through family trees. This occurred prominently by the application of Galton's idea of inherited intelligence. Measurement of intelligence therefore became the key tool of the eugenicists. Galton originally conceived of testing sensory and motor abilities, but this would soon advance to measuring cognitive factors. Alfred Binet developed such a system for French schools to identify students with learning problems to better help them advance with a test of memory, sentence completion, and word association. This served to form the modern model of schools dividing students into academic and vocational schools. Binet believed that education could cure low intelligence. William Stern then added a numerical scale to Binet's test by dividing the child's age by their ``mental age'' and produced a number he called an intelligence quotient. He added grammar, vocabulary and problem solving sections. However, such intelligence tests seem to be biased toward class and culture as those most like those generating the tests seem to score higher than other classes, races, and cultures differing from the originators.
These same tests became used as evidence by eugenics groups in support of various political efforts such as: restriction of immigration, restriction of marriage, sterilization of ``defectives'' and birth control. Many of these programs were racially and socially biased, with the white upper class being the desired product. Moreover, the idea that crime is more common among the poor and non-white races has perhaps become engrained in society. This has also perhaps sparked countermovements among these groups that delights when high profile, rich, and white people are deposed or convicted of crimes. However apart from its original objective to determine which students need extra help in school; intelligence tests became a means of propaganda to create fear to adopt eugenics policies. The fear of these future defectives and feeble-minded is that they and their offspring will cause future crime and be dependent on the state for support. This fear as exemplified in the following quote:
``There is but one practical and feasible program in handling the great problem of the feeble-minded . . . to prevent the birth of those who would transmit imbecility'' - Margaret Sanger
It is further continued even unto today. As an example, the movie Alien 3 had a space colony set in the future populated by men with an extra Y chromosome and therefore predisposed, also wrongly, to more crime, thinking that an extra male chromosome contributes to more violence.
These eugenics policies centered around means of population control, namely: immigration, marriage, sterilization, and birth control. While immigration law was not solely the result of eugenics practices, it did add emphasis and provide scientific support for racial policies regarding immigration to the United States and Great Britain. One of the initial proponents of this eugenics movement in the United States was Charles Davenport. He was a Harvard professor and preeminent biologist who became director of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in 1910. Davenport invited Harry Laughlin to move to New York to run the Eugenics Record Office at Cold Spring Harbor. This was initially set up with funds from the Harrimans, the Kellogg's and later the Carnegie Institution. This office was dedicated toward the spread and traning of eugenics using the methods above, primarily immigration control and forced sterilization. In 1911, Davenport wrote Heredity in Relation to Eugenics, which was used as a college textbook for years. By 1912, 12 states had passed compulsory sterilization laws.
Henry Goddard was another eugenicist and believed in Galton's hereditary of intelligence. He translated Binet's test into English and testing thousands of Americans. Unlike Galton who favored increased reproduction among more intelligent people, Goddard favored restriction of the less intelligent to improve his country's intelligence. In, 1912, he sought to prove that feeble-mindedness was the result of a recessive gene in his examination of the Kallikak case. This followed a man with normal intelligence that committed adultery with a supposed feeble minded woman, which produced a line of descendents of feeble minded offspring, while the lawful wife produced normal children. The same year, Goddard was summoned to Ellis island to help screen and enforce an 1882 law prohibiting mental defectives from entering the country.
Around the same time, Lewis Terman worked in the military during World War One testing recruits and used Binet's test to score intelligence. He corrected certain perceived flaws in the test to produce the modern Stanford-Binet test in 1916. However, he used an English test for unschooled African Americans and Mexican families, which of course scored lower than schooled white Americans. His published results seemed to provide scientific evidence that whites were more intelligence as a race than other races.
This use of intelligence tests toward racist ends would continue with Madison Grant. He founded the school of physical anthropology as opposed to cultural anthropology that succeeded it. In 1916, he wrote The Passing of the Great Race. He acknowledged the three main races popular in contemporary race theory: Asian (Mongoloid), European (Caucasian), and African (Negroids), but further divided the European race into Nordic, Alpine, and Mediterranean sub-races. Grant attributed the best features of the European race to the Nordic branch such as chivalry, feudalism, and class distinctions, while acknowledging the Mediterranean mastery of the arts. The glory of Rome was attributed to borrowing from Nordic stock. The Alpine branch was inferior to both of these being suited to peasantry.
Grant theorized that the Nordic race was superior due to its evolution in colder climates that eliminated its unfit due to harsh winters and the necessity of overcoming obstacles in order to provide food and shelter in an artic environment. This produced a strong race lacking its less fit members that could overwhelm others in battle. He called this race Homo Europaeus, the supreme expression of the white race. He believed it was suited to exploring and ruling of Europe. Grant's main concern of the book was that the lower races were breeding much faster than the original Nordic stock of the United States and would become extinct leaving a corrupt sectionalized parody of itself. Grant provided evidence of this decline by his research and findings of lowering standard of living and morals. His solution was to separate, isolate, and eventually eliminate the unfit lower races. This would be done by separating the lower races into ghettos and eventual sterilization. Immigration of these unfit races must also be curtailed to keep racial purity. To not do so, he theorized that the Nordic morality would degenerate into slavery to their passions and base behaviors. These lower races would long to be dominated and would eventually lead to the collapse of democracy into dictatorships. Grant's rival and supporter of cultural anthropology, a Jewish man named Franz Boas, wrested control of the American Anthropological Association from Grant, and Grant and Charles Davenport founded the Galton Society in 1918 in response.
In a similar vein, Lothrop Stoddard presented his views of the post-world war one, lessening status of white nations in his own book, The Rising Tide of Color Against White World-Supremacy in 1920. This accepted Grant's division of races and the white race, but was more concerned about white versus non-white causes rather than struggles within the white race. He divided the world into areas of white, brown, yellow, and black races and predicted the future course of the interactions of these races. Although there were several wrong predictions, Stoddard did predict a Japanese American War, a second war in Europe, the overthrow of colonial forces, the mass migration of non-white people to white countries, and the rise of Islam as a threat to the Western world. As he supported a unified white front against the non-white parts of the world, he was very critical of the Germans who he blamed for the first World War and foresaw their role in starting a second one.
The impact of these two men was extraordinary on immigration and marriage law, and their impact on culture. The opening chapter of The Great Gatsby confirms this with a discussion of a book and author that is a merger of Stoddard and Grant and their respective books:
``Civilization's going to pieces,'' broke out Tom violently. ``I've gotten to be a terrible pessimist about things. Have you read `The Rise of the Coloured Empires' by this man Goddard?''
``Why, no,'' I answered, rather surprised by his tone.
``Well, it's a fine book, and everybody ought to read it. The idea is if we don't look out the white race will be - will be utterly submerged. It's all scientific stuff, it's been proved.''
This is part of the extent of the belief and pervasiveness of these men in the culture of the time. Their influence would also extend to Europe as will be discussed later.
In 1921, the United States passed the Emergency Quota Act, a temporary piece of legislation on immigration. It limited immigration to three percent of a nationality present in the United States in 1910. The clear purpose of the law was to restrict immigration to Nordic countries, particularly Britain and Germany. It cut immigration from southern and eastern Europe by seventy five percent and limited immigration to 357,802 people. Grant sought to decrease this amount and served as vice president of the Immigration restriction league from 1922 till his death. Harry Laughlin also testified for the upcoming revision by congress of excessive insanity among southern and eastern Europeans. The result of this was the Immigration Act of 1924 which limited immigration further to two percent, but of 1890 residents, further limiting eastern and southern European immigration. Asians were not permitted to immigrate at all. Grant further helped to provide statistics in order to set these quotas.
Harry Laughlin at this time became concerned that the eugenics laws previously passed were not being enforced, he therefore wrote Eugenical Sterilization in the United States in 1922. This included a sample law for states to enact. By 1924, 15 states has enacted such legislation requiring forced sterilization of certain classes of unfit people such as feeble-mindedness, the insane, and criminals, as well as miscegenation laws forbidding white and non-white people to marry. The most famous of such laws was the Racial Integrity Act of 1924 in Virginia which prohibited the marriage of white and non-white persons, which Madison Grant helped to pass. This act also decimated Indian populations, and the handling of records in Virginia made it very hard for future generations to trace their ancestry to Indian tribes in the present. Charles Davenport further cemented the evidence for miscegenation laws with his book, Race Crossing in Jamaica in 1929. This book gave statistical evidence for cultural and physical degradation after inbreeding of white and black populations. By 1956, twenty four states had passed similar laws. While the prevented marriages were not documented, over 59,000 people had been sterilized in the United States.
Dr. Walter Plecker was also a supporter, and the person responsible for the upholding of these laws in Virginia. As such he was responsible for 6,683 sterilizations in Virginia alone or 11.3 percent of the national total of sterilizations over the lifetime of the legislation. Plecker also corresponded with Walter Gross who was responsible for eugenics in Nazi Germany at the time. He commented on the Nazi sterilization of 600 children born to German women and black fathers in Algeria and regretted he did not have the authority to implement such programs at home. Needless to say, eugenics targeted both poor and non-white people.
One of the most famous test cases was that of Carrie Buck. She was a poor white girl who lived with foster parents. She was raped by a nephew of these people at the age of seventeen. In embarrassment, they committed her to the Virginia Colony for Epileptics and Feeble-minded because of her supposed feeble-mindedness and promiscuity. No mention of the rape was told to the institution. After the birth, her child was taken from her because she was declared unfit to raise her. Both mother and child were ordered to be sterilized which her guardians appealed. The case passed through the Country court, the Appeals Court of Virginia and then the Supreme Court. This Court authorized the forced sterilization. Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes Jr ruled that:
``It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind. The principle that sustains compulsory vaccination is broad enough to cover cutting the Fallopian tubes...Three generations of imbeciles are enough.''
Carrie Buck and her daughter were forcibly sterilized. Even Carrie's sister Doris was sterilized without her knowledge when she was hospitalized for appendicitis. She did not discover this had occurred till 1980. This sterilization act remained in effect till 1979.
During this period, a weird entwining of the feminist and eugenics movement occurred. Feminist in this period seemed to court the issue of death. A good example of this is Kate Chopin's novel The Awakening. The female main character in this story gives up her marriage and children in order to pursue an affair. When the person she was having the affair with can not handle her new found ``freedom'', she apparently swims out to sea and drowns herself. This story exemplifies suicide as the ultimate expression of feminism, proving beyond question a women's ownership of her body. This further explains the rather irrational end of the movie Thelma and Louise in our own time.
This courting of death continued within feminism as shown by the above movie in an attempt to prove control. Margaret Sanger, who was quoted earlier, was one of the first to open an illegal birth control clinic in 1916, which was promptly raided and closed. Sanger was intimately involved in both eugenics and reproductive rights. In 1921, Sanger and Lothrop Stoddard founded the American Birth Control League, which would later become Planned Parenthood. Sanger then opened the first legal clinic in 1923. In 1924, Sanger published her case for birth control stating nine reasons to enact it. Her argument opened with a Malthusian statement of growing population outperforming resources and the fitness of parents. Not coincidentally, the first four of these reasons were eugenics related, namely: when a parent has an inheritable disease or when children already born are not normal. The others concerned financial and behavioral reasons. Her main target of birth control was succinctly stated as the poor and unfit. It is no surprise that unfit included the then inherited disease of feeble-mindedness.
Furthermore, her targeting of the poor came at a time when infant mortality and stillbirths were high. Sanger's own mother had thirty eight percent of her children being born dead. Infant mortality during the first year alone was around ten percent during the 1920's and higher previously. These rates were naturally higher in poor conditions where parents could not afford better food, sanitation, and healthcare. With natural conditions predisposed toward heavy losses of children among the poor, birth control could only serve to stifle their numbers more. The combined effect of immigration control and increasing birth control perhaps started the baby bust and boom cycles in the U.S. with the first baby bust cycle lasting from 1921 to 1945. Sanger pushed for the development of the contraceptive pill which arrived in the 1960's prompting another baby bust cycle. Is it any wonder then that the majority of Planned Parenthood clinics are located within poor neighborhoods?
Such population control continues with such methods until the present day. China is notorious for forcing abortions on women. Another telling sign is the abortion business that grew in the U.S. with the aid of Planned Parenthood, which was a primary force in protecting doctors over the patients if anything goes wrong in these surgeries. Abortion has also become the only major operation that has gotten around the legal concepts of parental consent for their children undergoing a potentially harmful operation, since any part of the child left within the womb can lead to death. The harmful effects of some birth control methods such as the Dalkon shield which injured hundreds of thousands of women in the 1970's are a good example. Perhaps the most shocking recent development is the distribution of Quinacrine to mothers not informed of the process. This is a cheap medicine that can be inserted into the uterus and causes scarring that overwhelmingly cause sterilization. Dr. Elton Kessel and Stephen Mumford used these pills extensively with funding from Family Health International and immigration control groups. There is much concern that these men did not inform the thousands of women they sterilized in tests in India and Vietnam. This has led to the drug being banned by the World Health Organization as well as the F.D.A. Planned Parenthood however has defended such sterilization and shown a willingness to test this drug in the U.S.
XI. Nazism and Communism
Eugenics also had a firm foot in Germany. Haeckel had popularized and spread evolution with a decidedly racist, pro-German twist. This rippled forth in science and in popular movements. One such affected scientist was Friedrich Ratzel writing Sein und Werden der organischen Welt in 1869 as an exploration of Darwin's ideas. Ratzel later became one of the dominant influences on geography. Like Spencer, Ratzel viewed nation-states as super-organisms. This became a dominant theme with both races and nations. He believed that nations were shaped by their environment. The land therefore determined the character of the nation, which in turn determined the quality of its people, both in government and institutions. Between 1874 and 1875, he visited North America and Mexico where he studied the influence of German people had in the Midwest. He founded human geography in his work Anthropogeographie in 1882. He translated Darwin's ideas of nature selecting traits in organisms to geography affecting the course of mankind inhabiting it. In 1897, he published more of his ideas in Politische Geography, in which he determined that Germany was overcrowded and that its farmland had reached its capacity in a Malthusian way. This meant that the population had to emigrate to the cities and countries where they would lose their German character, this was perhaps influenced by the Germans he encountered in the American Midwest that had been forced by law to lose their language and acclimate to American culture. Ratzel's solution to this problem was for Germany to find lebensraum or living space. He showed that if a state is strong with weak neighbors, then the strong state will grow larger at the expense of its weaker neighbors with space being a political force. He advocated Germany founding colonies from which to gain natural resources and to preserve the German character.
General Karl Haushofer become a teacher in geopolitics after the first World War and further expanded the concept of lebensraum and believed that Germany lost the First World War from lack of knowledge of its geography and colonies. One of his students who he claimed was one of the two men he knew who grasped the truth of geopolitics was Rudolf Hess. Hess wrote a prize winning essay, ``How Must the Man be Constructed who will lead Germany back to her Old Heights?'' It reiterated the beliefs of Nietzsche in that such a man would not shrink from bloodshed or even dispatching his closest friends to reach his goals.
Additionally, the Volkish movement translated Haeckel's ideas almost directly into its core beliefs. Members of this movement included Otto Ammon who believed ``that Darwinism must become the new religion of Germany.'' Another member was Alexander Ploetz who thought that all parents should be screened according to racial lines, and he created the eugenics journal called Archiv in 1904 putting Galton's ideas into plan. The first issue was dedicated to Haeckel and advocated breeding cities for the elite. Theodore Fritsch actually wanted to create these selective breeding communities and formed a youth movement called Artamarzen named after a theoretical Aryan god in 1918. Rudolph Hess and Heinrich Himmler were charter members of this movement.55 These two men were also members of an organization known as the Thule Society. This group was the recruiting and political front for another group called the Ordens Germanum which before 1912 had been known as Ordens Neiu Templars. These groups believed, similar to Haeckel, that there had been a lost continent they called Thule like Haeckel's Lemuria. These groups similarly believed that a great, highly evolved civilization existed there that was wiped out, but some of its members survived. These ancients kept the secrets of their ancient society and could pass along their knowledge to those who sought it and also be able to endow men with supernatural strength. This same myth widely circulated among spiritualists in German and English society. A similar myth circulates today in the form of Atlantis. This is the same myth guised in scientific terms. The Society wished to perfect the German people in an evolutionary way. To do so, they wished to find these ancients to procure their knowledge and power and to purify the German race by removing inferior races from their midst. The Thule society attracted scores of wealthy citizens to support their cause, and this in turn led them to also oppose the rising communism that threatened these same wealthy citizens.
To this end, they formed a third group to be composed of lower class Germans to be the muscle for the Thule society. It was named the Worker's Political Circle. This group and the Thule society were most active in Bavaria and attempted to topple the communist government there. In 1920, the Worker's Circle was renamed the National Socialist German Worker's Party or NSDAP. Hess became the sixteenth member of this group. Dietrick Eckhart became the driving force intellectually for the Society in this campaign. He took an artist as a protegee by the name of Adolf Hitler who took control of the NSDAP and eventually renamed it as the Nazi Party. Hilter, in 1923, organized a failed Putsch, or coupe, to overthrow the German republic. He was arrested while Hess escaped and hid with Haushofer for a time who helped him escape to Austria. Hess was captured and imprisoned with Hitler. Haushofer visited them for six hours bringing Hitler a copy of Ratzel's Politische Geography. While Haushofer denied after the war in instructing Hitler with the Nuremburg trials approaching, many new ideas became inserted in Hitler's policy that seemed to come directly from geopolitics such as the idea of lebensraum, natural frontiers, space for defensive buffers, and geographic emphasis on military strategy. Policies on Eastern Europe particularly showed geopolitical policy changes.
While in jail, Hess took dictation and edited Hitler's book, Mein Kampf or My Struggle, which was dedicated to Eckhart. Hitler met Himmler in jail who in 1929 would be put in charge of an SS unit of three-hundred men, which was originally Hilter's bodyguard. Himmler would expand the SS to the size of an army and would become directly responsible for the racial policies of the Nazis. Not coincidentally, the SS also formed scientific programs. One explored racial differences with cruel experiments. Another formed an archaeological corps that searched for early German connections to Thule ranging as far away as Tibet.
Hitler rose to power by appealing to national pride and racist tendencies. He sought to purify the German race according to evolutionary views. Prussia having been beaten and humiliated in the First World War responded overwhelmingly to this message that they were a superior people being oppressed by an `unnatural' commingling with other races. Evolutionary theory made Germany the strongest fascist nation in history so far, becoming a political and economic dictatorship that exalted the nation and race.
In 1935, Hess played a crucial role in writing the Nuremburg laws. These forbade Germans from marrying with Jews and stripped them of their German citizenship, paving the way for the atrocities them to come. Hess eventually became third in line of succession as Deputy Fuehrer behind Hitler and was involved in all political appointments till 1941. In 1941, Haushofer as proven by letters conspired with Hess to have him fly to England to meet with the Duke of Hamilton and Brandon who had met Haushofer's son in 1936 who later played a role in negotiations with the British. They believed Hamilton to be an opponent of Churchill and Hess was to attempt a peace treaty with England on the eve of the war with the Soviet Union. Hess was captured and Haushofers' role diminished, eventually ending in prison camp.
Modern evolutionists today will claim there is no connection between the scientific evolution of today and Nazism, but modern evolution, as this chapter has shown and now much of science is, a severely pruned tree with the majority of its branches trimmed of the false and forgotten branches. Without the evolution of Darwin and specifically Haeckel, there would not have been a race policy of the Nazis, there would have been no `scientific' proof these policies were correct, and no proof or drive that the German people were superior other than mild patriotism. Nazism could have been reduced to simply being an anticommunist movement and would not have had the public appeal it did. This is evidenced by history and their testimony. Hitler referred to Madison Grant's book as ``his Bible,'' and Karl Brandt head of the Nazi euthanasia program introduced the same book into evidence in support of his policies.
The consequences of Hitler's reign were catastrophic. His desire to purge the German race caused the genocide of six million Jews, one-third of the entire Jewish race and sixty percent in Europe and Russia. Five million non-Jews were similarly murdered in the name of purifying the race. The war for lebensraum caused the death of sixty million soldiers and civilians. This amounted to more than two percent of the entire world population killed and ten percent of Europe. Ten trillion in today's dollars was spent to wage the war by the various governments. These figures do not include the millions wounded and the billions of dollars of damage to European cities raised entirely in the war.
Without evolutionary theories of the day even if the Nazis did rise to power, the horrors of that war would not have happened. The Jews would not have been slaughtered. The millions of gypsies, homosexuals, mentally-impaired, Catholics and non-Germans would not have been slaughtered. They would not have tried to re-organize society or promote baby mills to make more `pure' Germans. They would not have kidnapped ``Aryan looking'' children from neighboring counties. There would have been no concept of lebensraum that Germany was due because they were a superior race. There would have been no concept of race as a nation, which still plagues Europe and the world today, such as the persisting desire to split nations according to race. This occurred in many Eastern European nations and is being suggested in Iraq currently. Germany would never have had a drive to unite the German people. The rest of Europe would never have thought it a right of Germany to perform, and so would have been far more likely to intervene as Czechoslovakia and Austria were illegally annexed. There would have been no drive to reunite with East Prussia in Poland and no drive to invade Poland for lebensraum. Without evolution, there might not have been a Nazi Germany, there would have been a much lesser chance of World War Two occurring, and then if those two things did happen, then the travesties of the holocaust would certainly not have occurred. Misguided evolutionary theory put into practice all these things.
Unfortunately, evolution theory is an adaptable and widespread philosophy and can accommodate many points of view depending on who is interpreting it. The Nazis adopted evolution for its belief in struggle of races and an evolutionary theory of race as a nation and nations as super-organisms. An opposing view arose in Russia based on Marx's work which interpreted evolution according to class rather than along race lines, and this tension also aided and fueled the world war that followed. For communists, the struggle between social classes was paramount rather than those of nations and races. The movement arose in several areas of Europe, but was eventually defeated. The first struggle of the Nazis was against the communist government of Bavaria. The Spanish civil war was similarly a struggle between communist and fascist forces. In a country with vaster problems, this movement took root. In 1917 during the midst of World War One, Vladmir Lenin arranged a coup of the Russian royalty and took control of the state through the civil war that followed.
Lenin and then his right hand men, Leon Trotsky and Joseph Stalin, attempted to put the teachings of Marx into practice. While their philosophy did not stem from evolution, it coincided with it and provided a foundation for their theories. Evolution tied their philosophy to the material world and provided a scientific groundwork for its foundation, much as it did for Nazism. It provided a scientific and, according to communists, a dialectic theory of origins which was entirely materialistic, much as their own philosophy was supposed to be. Revolution was therefore a natural and inevitable event. Thus their philosophy could be complete and wherever communism was spread, they spread evolution as well.
rule by individual rule of individual
Classic Liberalism Facism for state
``laissez-faire'' ``the fuehrer''
evolve by natural forces evolve by race struggle
Progressive T. R evolve by class struggle
evolve by gov. guidance ``the people''
rule of ``support system'' Communism rule of state
state for Social Liberalism MARX for people
Lenin, however, had to deal with the failings of Marxism, in that his supposed revolution of the proletariat never occurred in highly capitalist countries. Lenin therefore predicted this revolution would occur in third world countries like Russia. However, it only occurred in these countries by coup and then by order of the new dictatorships. Lenin lived in a world where the Marxist predictions did not occur thanks to both self-interested and altruistic movements of both capitalists and governments. Governments moved to break up monopolies and restrict abuses of workers. Unions formed to gain better conditions and wages of their employers. Marx foresaw none of this and his theory of profit coming from surplus labor was in error. Real wages increased even in Marx's lifetime. Lenin therefore proposed that Marx's theories had been disrupted by the acquisition of colonies. The imperialism of capitalist countries allowed these countries to exploit the colony's workers and use the increased profits to buy off the proletariat at home. The communist party must therefore struggle to end both capitalism and imperialism. With colonies gone, countries would revert to their Marxist evolution toward a communist future. Thus the role of the communist must be solidly in third world countries destroying imperialistic connections and installing communist governments.
However, Lenin's attempts to install a communistic society in his own Russia failed. The economy collapsed while trying to run it according to communist policies. Lenin died soon after, and Joseph Stalin took leadership over Russia. Stalin became an atheist in his youth due to the influence of Darwin's texts. He instituted a limited form of communism, namely socialism, and forcibly took ownership of all farms, putting them into the state's hands. He industrialized Russia, but this all masked the basic inefficiencies of communism.46
Along with both Nazism and Communism came the inevitable philosophic consequence of evolution: human life is valuable only as long as it is useful. The definition of useful will inevitably be defined by the government of whatever country evolution flourishes in. For Germany, the definition of useful was members of the German race. For communist countries, useful became defined as supporters of the revolution. In every country that is taken over by communist revolutionaries, terror and mass murder ensues. Soviet Russia murdered twenty million people by force of arms under Stalin. China murdered twenty million people and killed another forty million through starvation by confiscating their food, which also occurred in Russia. Pol Pot alone killed two million people in Cambodia or thirty percent of his country's population as late as the 1970's. Pot even made the order to kill anyone with glasses to remove any intellectuals in his country out of fear. The ends justify the means is the morality of evolution, as the future is all the matters, since it is the future that is the only reality. Individuals mean nothing as in Nazi Germany, and only the proposed future race matters. However history has shown, Soviet Russia fell into economy turmoil, and China is slowly adopting capitalist practices. It has failed. All totaled, this tragically failed theory is responsible for the death of more than 100 million people in the last century in pursuit of their goal of the perfect evolution of society. This is in addition to the increased suffering communism caused by their anti-imperialist drive. They urged newly formed nations from old colonies to nationalize foreign holdings and limit foreign investment. This caused these countries to lack the capital to improve their economies and led to continued poverty.46
Communist leaders also fought desperately against evolutionary theories that did not fit with their world view. Lamarckist evolution was favored for its progressive views. With lamarckist evolution, progress can be made and passed along biologically to mankind's descendants. Man can progress by their own actions. This view was popularized by Haeckel and became entrenched in Russian science. Paul Kammerer forged some experiments that `proved' Lamarckism. He was appointed to a chair at the University of Moscow in 1925 due to his work. When his experiments were found out to be fraudulent, this was blamed on reactionary capitalists. Kammerer later committed suicide. In the 1930's under Stalin, the scientific community in Russia was purged of all scientists who favored Darwinism over Lamarckism. Many were discharged in disgrace and many were sent to Siberian labor camps. None of them were left alive by the 1960's.
In 1927, Trofim Lysenko was appointed the head of the agricultural program in the Soviet Union for a limited technique he helped developed that he called vernalisation. This was treatment of seed to allow production of winter crops. He established that genetics was a decadent science; chance played no role in passing along characteristics and genes did not even exist. Lysenko pushed Lamarckism as the dominant biological view until the mid 1960's. His theories went hand in hand with communist ideology that plants placed in a new environment would adapt quickly and pass these changes along to their descendants. So the communist state would change the environment and all peoples would be perfected. Lysenko tended to be more a publicist than scientist disfavoring scientific procedures such as control groups or even the use of mathematics.
Thus we find evolution supporting and forming policy in the collectivist opposites of fascism and communism. Both use evolution with the aim of creating more perfect societies. Fascism does this with Darwinism, genetics, and ultimately eugenics to remove the imperfect elements of society and allow the state to become perfect. Both also tend to form a religion around their leaders and direct all blame for problems outward rather than as a result of the policies of these leaders. The practical worship of Hitler and the enshrinement of the eternal tomb of Lenin are evidence of this. Communism emphasizes the environment and progress. They seek to create a better environment which in turn will create better and more perfect humans. However as fascism, communism, and eugenics have faded away, the actual evidence for evolution has also decreased since Darwin's time. This will be the subject of the next chapter.
Phrenology was a popular pseudo-science that taught traits were caused by the size of locations in the brain. These in turn influenced the shape of a person's skull, so that the influence of these factors could be read from the bumps on one's head. It was generally anti-religious and fully materialistic in philosophy. Man was predetermined by his physique and could progress only by practicing in the correct way, which would make areas of the brain grow. Phrenological beliefs expanded into various social beliefs. The hope of man lie in the present and man can be perfected by the implementation of phrenological practices; much like education and knowledge was in the philosophe's time. It becomes the hope of society, preventing crime and curing insanity, as insanity and crime are mere diseases. The practice was dangerous also, encouraging racism in South Africa by declaring the natives subhuman or by proclaiming a criminal nature to innocent people.
Coincidently, Bruno was the first vocal proponent of Copernican heliocentric theory, not because of his understanding, but because it too fit his larger philosophy. He expanded on this theory, however, that every star had its own solar system that evolved and devolved according to Greek theory. Each planet also had its own inhabitants.
Sorry apparently SATAN (church lady speaking) i mean IB is showing same copy for all chapters, so uploaded them separately (edit)
this is a book I wrote when I was really young. It was my attempt to disprove evolution theory. Everything is cited with weblinks in docs....altho being 10+ years old some web links may be dead.
1st chapter is history of theory and shows the incredibly bad effects it had on our society from Nazis killing millions, US sterilizing people, Russian famines, to not spanking your kids <--that was a surprise.
2nd and 3rd chapter are about theory itself, how initial proofs have not only evaporated but now point against theory and other problems, like no explanation for how life formed, how bacteria turned into eukaryotes (our cells) or how they turned into metazoans (multicelled lifeforms) and did so in last two cases multiple times in same way.
4th chapter is about "evolution" in other sciences, like astronomy.
the 0.5 chapters are thought problems I wrote down at time which makes me think I have gotten a lot dumber since then or just not motivated.
I would probably add some thoughts to this, if I rewrote it like the diversity problem in evolution although its probably hinted at in these texts but didn't have a cogent idea at the time. This being why isnt there more diversity in life? Not at species level which is exaggerated as detailed in book. If we take a definition of species as critters that can interbreed and produce fertile offspring...all bovines are 1 species...cattle, buffalo, oxen, guars...etc.but we list them as different species because they look different.