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Unformatted text preview: 4-08-2011 SS1A Lecture Social Darwinism misuses a biological theory Charles Darwin: the best adapted organism survives. But Darwin himself did not believe any species be superior to another. Scholars later interpreted it as a theory that could apply to society -->Ernst Haeckel • Nazi rationale • German biologists did not believe that everyone was equal and politicized theory of evolution Scientific materialism: no afterlife or non-physical things, believed by many scientists of the time. Humans have no soul, which is a theory called monism. Because they believed there were those who were superior as well as inferior, just keep the superior ones. After all, no one has soul, so it’s no big deal to give up on the inferior ones. The quality of the human species is everything. Clearing the human race of defective people. Promoting infancide, Euthanasia, Suicide, and Eugenics (selective breeding) At the same time, people wanted to have the superior ones reproduce, so the society as a whole can be advanced. “Do not make the unequal equal” is the famous line. Communism, Christianity were criticized for looking at everyone being equal. In England- selective breeding In U.S.-forced sterilization. Science of Eugenics, used to cure social ills -leads to the Nature vs. Nurture debate -In the ppt slide that has an illustration titled “Bulgary...” the genes of Northern Europeans immigrants & with that of Southern European immigrants were compared.. -3 methods (ppt slide) Euthanasia is controversial because it is never clear who makes the decision (of giving permission to end a person’s life.) Such topic is seen as assisted suicide, which is always controversial. Today, science can look into the genes- genes engineering, the mapping of human genome. The debate of Nature vs. Nurture is revived again. ...
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- Spring '11