Evolution Ethics

Author: Thomas Henry Huxley
Publisher: Princeton University Press
ISBN: 9780691141305
Format: PDF
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'Evolution and Ethics' widely considered to be Huxley's greatest lecture, distilled a lifetime's wisdom and sensitive understanding of the nature and needs of humankind. This new edition places it in its original context while showing its even deeper relevance for our own time.

Evolution and Ethics

Author: Thomas Henry Huxley
Publisher:
ISBN: 9781591021261
Format: PDF, Mobi
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These two essays by the famous 19th-century champion of Darwin’s theory of evolution tackle a subject that is still a major focus of ethical debates today: the relation of science as a whole, and specifically evolutionary ideas, to ethics and morality. Written toward the end of Huxley’s career when he was already famous as a persuasive lecturer and a fascinating expositor of new ideas, these essays demonstrate his rhetorical gifts and talent for explaining the importance of science to a lay audience. "Evolution and Ethics," his last major talk delivered at Oxford in 1893, was written in response to the then fashionable "Social Darwinism" popularized by philosopher Herbert Spencer. Spencer and his followers had been labeling the poor, criminals, and other social undesirables as "unfit" and suggesting that society deal with them as harshly as nature deals with the physically unfit. Huxley found this approach both morally repugnant and a serious misapplication of Darwinian theory to the subject of ethics. Society progresses, Huxley maintained, through individuals who prove themselves to be ethically the best, not physically the most fit. Ethics is designed to curb our antisocial animal instincts and therefore must be detached from natural competition. In "Science and Morals," written some years earlier (1886), Huxley addresses three criticisms: namely, that he and his associates refuse to take seriously anything that (1) cannot be verified by the senses, that (2) is beyond the bounds of physical science, and that (3) cannot be subjected to laboratory experimentation and chemical analysis. To all of these criticisms Huxley replies that he takes very seriously a host of mental phenomena that do not, strictly speaking, fall within these narrow physical limits: the universal law of causation, or the esthetic pleasure of the arts, or the truths of mathematics, for example. He goes on to say that he repudiates the doctrine of Materialism as much as he does that of Spiritualism, and that he coined the term "Agnostic" to apply to his own particular philosophical viewpoint. He concludes with comments on the existence of God and free will, suggesting that science does not necessarily rule out either postulate. Students of ethics, the history of science, and the ongoing debates over evolution will welcome this new edition of two masterful essays by "Darwin’s Bulldog."

The Evolution of Morality

Author: Richard Joyce
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 9780262263252
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Moral thinking pervades our practical lives, but where did this way of thinking come from, and what purpose does it serve? Is it to be explained by environmental pressures on our ancestors a million years ago, or is it a cultural invention of more recent origin? In The Evolution of Morality, Richard Joyce takes up these controversial questions, finding that the evidence supports an innate basis to human morality. As a moral philosopher, Joyce is interested in whether any implications follow from this hypothesis. Might the fact that the human brain has been biologically prepared by natural selection to engage in moral judgment serve in some sense to vindicate this way of thinking -- staving off the threat of moral skepticism, or even undergirding some version of moral realism? Or if morality has an adaptive explanation in genetic terms -- if it is, as Joyce writes, "just something that helped our ancestors make more babies" -- might such an explanation actually undermine morality's central role in our lives? He carefully examines both the evolutionary "vindication of morality" and the evolutionary "debunking of morality," considering the skeptical view more seriously than have others who have treated the subject.Interdisciplinary and combining the latest results from the empirical sciences with philosophical discussion, The Evolution of Morality is one of the few books in this area written from the perspective of moral philosophy. Concise and without technical jargon, the arguments are rigorous but accessible to readers from different academic backgrounds. Joyce discusses complex issues in plain language while advocating subtle and sometimes radical views. The Evolution of Morality lays the philosophical foundations for further research into the biological understanding of human morality.

Moral Minds

Author: Marc Hauser
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 0061864781
Format: PDF, ePub
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In his groundbreaking book, Marc Hauser puts forth a revolutionary new theory: that humans have evolved a universal moral instinct, unconsciously propelling us to deliver judgments of right and wrong independent of gender, education, and religion. Combining his cutting-edge research with the latest findings in cognitive psychology, linguistics, neuroscience, evolutionary biology, economics, and anthropology, Hauser explores the startling implications of his provocative theory vis-à-vis contemporary bioethics, religion, the law, and our everyday lives.

The Biology of Moral Systems

Author: Richard Alexander
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351329294
Format: PDF, ePub, Docs
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First Published in 2017. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an Informa company.

The Moral Landscape

Author: Sam Harris
Publisher: Simon and Schuster
ISBN: 143917122X
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Calls for an end to religion's role in dictating morality, demonstrating how the scientific community's understandings about the human brain may enable the establishment of secular codes of behavior.

Mind and Morals

Author: Larry May
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 9780262631655
Format: PDF, Mobi
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The essays in this anthology deal with the growing interconnections between moral philosophy and research that draws upon neuroscience, developmental psychology, and evolutionary biology. This cross-disciplinary interchange coincides, not accidentally, with the renewed interest in ethical naturalism. In order to understand the nature and limits of moral reasoning, many new ethical naturalists look to cognitive science for an account of how people actually reason. At the same time, many cognitive scientists have become increasingly interested in moral reasoning as a complex form of human cognition that challenges their theoretical models. The result of this collaborative, and often critical, interchange is an exciting intellectual ferment at the frontiers of research into human mentality. Sections and Contributors: Ethics NaturalizedOwen Flanagan, Mark L. Johnson, Virginia Held Moral Judgments, Representations, and PrototypesPaul M. Churchland, Andy Clark, Peggy DesAutels, Ruth Garrett Millikan Moral EmotionsRobert M. Gordon, Alvin I. Goldman, John Deigh, Naomi Scheman Agency and ResponsibilityJames P. Sterba, Susan Khin-Zaw, Helen E. Longino, Michael E. Bratman A Bradford Book

The Science of Good and Evil

Author: Michael Shermer
Publisher: Macmillan
ISBN: 9780805077698
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Reveals how humans have evolved from social primates into moral primates, exploring the implications of fuzzy logic, fate, free will, and ecology, among other issues affecting the way humans think about moral issues.

An Introduction to Evolutionary Ethics

Author: Scott M. James
Publisher: John Wiley & Sons
ISBN: 1444329529
Format: PDF, ePub
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Offering the first general introductory text to this subject, the timely Introduction to Evolutionary Ethics reflects the most up-to-date research and current issues being debated in both psychology and philosophy. The book presents students to the areas of cognitive psychology, normative ethics, and metaethics. The first general introduction to evolutionary ethics Provides a comprehensive survey of work in three distinct areas of research: cognitive psychology, normative ethics, and metaethics Presents the most up-to-date research available in both psychology and philosophy Written in an engaging and accessible style for undergraduates and the interested general reader Discusses the evolution of morality, broadening its relevance to those studying psychology

Moral Psychology

Author: Walter Sinnott-Armstrong
Publisher: MIT Press
ISBN: 0262195690
Format: PDF, Docs
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For much of the twentieth century, philosophy and science went their separate ways. In moral philosophy, fear of the so-called naturalistic fallacy kept moral philosophers from incorporating developments in biology and psychology. Since the 1990s, however, many philosophers have drawn on recent advances in cognitive psychology, brain science, and evolutionary psychology to inform their work. This collaborative trend is especially strong in moral philosophy, and these three volumes bring together some of the most innovative work by both philosophers and psychologists in this emerging interdisciplinary field. The contributors to volume 2 discuss recent empirical research that uses the diverse methods of cognitive science to investigate moral judgments, emotions, and actions. Each chapter includes an essay, comments on the essay by other scholars, and a reply by the author(s) of the original essay. Topics include moral intuitions as a kind of fast and frugal heuristics, framing effects in moral judgments, an analogy between Chomsky's universal grammar and moral principles, the role of emotions in moral beliefs, moral disagreements, the semantics of moral language, and moral responsibility.Walter Sinnott-Armstrong is Professor of Philosophy and Hardy Professor of Legal Studies at Dartmouth College.Contributors to volume 2: Fredrik Bjorklund, James Blair, Paul Bloomfield, Fiery Cushman, Justin D'Arms, John Deigh, John Doris, Julia Driver, Ben Fraser, Gerd Gigerenzer, Michael Gill, Jonathan Haidt, Marc Hauser, Daniel Jacobson, Joshua Knobe, Brian Leiter, Don Loeb, Ron Mallon, Darcia Narvaez, Shaun Nichols, Alexandra Plakias, Jesse Prinz, Geoffrey Sayre-McCord, Russ Shafer-Landau, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong, Cass Sunstein, William Tolhurst, Liane Young