|This article is of interest to the following WikiProjects:|
Evolution, Psychology and Ethics
I'm planning to merge most of what was at a page called "Ethics and evolutionary psychology" into this page. I'm grateful to Elembis for saving this content (User:Elembis/Ethics and evolutionary psychology) as I'm bemused as to how the delete discussion decided (weakly) that it wasn't relevant or sourced (granted, the excellent list of source material was listed under 'further reading'). The delete discussion (Wikipedia:Articles for deletion/Ethics and evolutionary psychology) mentioned some other relevant books that could be added. I don't know if anything was discussed on the article's talk page because the history has gone - I had previously asked there whether the title should be changed.
- I think the basic subject of that evolutionary ethic page, to the ideas of one apparently non-mainstream author who's written some books relating to the subject, could be merged into this page, leaving a redirect. I'm going to do this now and just leave a redirect back at the original page, and also merge in most of the above ev psych content since no objections raised. EverSince 15:12, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
- Well I've made a start merging things, obviously very imperfect and needing a lot of work. Re. Garcia I don't really know, but there's lots of vaguely philosophical stuff around that's vaguely related to evolution and ethics, at least in name, where should it all go? EverSince 16:12, 4 April 2007 (UTC)
- Thanks for your edit. I've removed the mention of Garcia, since his "evolutionary ethic" is unrelated and the current mention of it relied on a self-published source, and I've put the sources you added in a "Further reading" section, since the article itself doesn't cite them yet (see this edit). — Elembis (talk · contribs) 21:05, 27 April 2007 (UTC)
I quickly merged evolutionary ethic here, then decided the content is so poor that I should simply move it here for discussion concerning its relevancy. Here it goes:
Garcia proposed that the evolutionary ethic should become the founding principle of a new society, just as the "libertarian ethic" is the organizing principle of American democracy and the "materialistic ethic" is the organizing principle of Marxism-Leninism.
The "libertarian ethic" holds that the maximization of freedom is the ultimate good.
The "materialistic ethic" holds that the maximization of every person's security—particularly economic security—is the ultimate good.The evolutionary ethic requires one to look at one's life from a more detached and bloodless perspective than most people are capable of: most people identify strongly with their own happiness and that of their loved ones and will refuse to identify instead with an abstract and impersonal process. Nevertheless, there are people for whom the process that increases the creativity of themselves and those around them is a more essential and immediate part of themselves than their own bodies, comfort and survival are.
Altruism in animals merge
Analytic philosophy - structure
The section Analytic philosophy ends in a (seemingly) extreme POV:
- If ethics is just an illusion, that logically leads to amoralism.
First: the statement must be attributed to Ruse (or anyone else), or be deleted. Making it invalid is as simple as breaking the connection between ethics and moral, or declaring that "amoralism" is another moral... Someone have to support the statement (citation needed) in order to make it viable. (Personally I'm beyond logic, so the statement seems very naïve to me!)
Secondly: (imagine a much more humbly tone here) the section treats Ruse only. I guess there are other analytical philosophers that reasons about evolutionary ethics, trying "illusion" or "real" or something inbetween. It would be desirable to have other philosophers' opinion in the section too... ... said: Rursus (bork²) 10:01, 10 July 2009 (UTC)
co-evolution of genes and memes
I'm not competent to do it, but imho this page needs some discussion about the idea (proposed by Dawkins and many others) that ideas (in this case, morals or ethics) evolve according to Darwin's principle of natural selection.
The page does a pretty good job on the concept that (a) humans' moral sense, and (b) at least some of our morals themselves, are hard-wired; i.e. we have evolved to a point where we have these things inherently. (But, a quibble, Joyce's book should be cited: Joyce, Richard. 2007. The Evolution of Morality. Cambridge MA: MIT Press.) But in the case of morals/ethics, it seems obvious that we learn much of these from our societies. Some of our morality may be natural but much of it is learned. So far, I guess, nobody would disagree.
But what's more interesting is the possibility that the evolutionary paths of both our moral sense and societies' ideas about morality have each been affected by the other. That is, just as a carnivore needs sharp teeth while an herbivore needs flat teeth and maybe a second stomach, certain combinations of our natural and our learned morality exist as they do as a result of co-evolution of each.
As I said, it's not for me to write this, but I think somebody more competent might do so.
I would like to post a section about the metaethical foundations that evolutionary ethics can provide. I am currently in an ethics class at a university, and as part of our assignments we are to edit or add to a wikipedia page. I would like to make a small contribution to this page.
What's the next step on this article?
This article is spotty and sloppy. Thanks all for your edits. Now it needs tightening up.
What's the next step? I'm a philosopher and ethicist but only a neophyte to evolutionary ethics. Even so, I might take a stab at some of these.