達爾文主義

查尔斯·达尔文(1868年)

达尔文主义是与生物演化有关的一系列运动和概念,其中也包含与查尔斯·达尔文无关的思想[1][2][3]。随着时间的推移,“达尔文主义”的含义已经发生了变化,这取决于谁在使用这个词语[4]。在美国,“达尔文主义”经常被创造论者作为贬义词使用。但在英国,这个词并无贬义,它用来指代演化论[5]

这个词语是由托马斯·亨利·赫胥黎在1860年创造出来的[6],那时候被用来描述演化概念,包括早期的概念,诸如马尔萨斯主义和斯宾塞主义。到了19世纪晚期,它开始代表“自然选择是唯一的演化机制”这个概念。与拉马克主义相比,在1900年左右,直到达尔文和格里哥·孟德尔的思想统一成现代演化综论以前,它一直被孟德尔定律所掩盖。随着现代演化综论的发展,这个词语有时候会与特定的思想联系起来[4]

后来,只有科学作家还在使用这个词,于是它越来越多的被认为不适合用来描述现代演化综论[7][8][9]。例如,因为达尔文并不熟悉格里哥·孟德尔的理论[10],所以对遗传仅仅有含糊和不准确的认识,对遗传漂变更是一无所知[11]

概念

1870年,随着“达尔文主义”被广泛接受,出现了有着身体的查尔斯·达尔文的漫画[12]

“达尔文主义”这个词语在十九世纪晚期用来代表伊拉斯谟斯·达尔文的工作。1860年4月,当查尔斯·达尔文1859年的《物种起源》被托马斯·亨利·赫胥黎在 Westminster Review中提到后,这个词语的意义才变成今天这样[13]。赫胥黎把这本书称为“a veritable Whitworth gun in the armoury of liberalism”(“自由的军械库中一把真正的惠特沃斯枪”),将科学自然主义提升至超过宗教信仰的高度, 并在赞扬达尔文思想有用之处的同时,表达了对达尔文 渐进论专业角度的保留看法,还对能否证实自然选择可形成新物种表示怀疑。[14] 赫胥黎把达尔文的成就与尼古拉·哥白尼解释行星运动相提并论:

What if the orbit of Darwinism should be a little too circular? What if species should offer residual phænomena, here and there, not explicable by natural selection? Twenty years hence naturalists may be in a position to say whether this is, or is not, the case; but in either event they will owe the author of "The Origin of Species" an immense debt of gratitude...... And viewed as a whole, we do not believe that, since the publication of Von Baer's "Researches on Development," thirty years ago, any work has appeared calculated to exert so large an influence, not only on the future of Biology, but in extending the domination of Science over regions of thought into which she has, as yet, hardly penetrated.[6]

同時代的另一個演化理論家是克魯泡特金,在他的 互助論:演化的一種因素(Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution)一書裡,他支持和赫胥黎主張相反的達爾文主義。他的理論以他所見人類與動物以合作為生存機制的普遍為中心。他以生物和社會性的論點來顯出助長演化的主因是在自由聯合的社會和團體裡自由合作的個體。這是為了反駁演化的核心是激烈競爭的論點,競爭理論為當時流行的政治、經濟和社會理論提供了合理性;而盛行的對於達爾文主義的詮釋,例如克魯泡特金視為對手的赫胥黎的詮釋,克魯泡特金的達爾文主義概念可以以以下的引言總結:

In the animal world we have seen that the vast majority of species live in societies, and that they find in association the best arms for the struggle for life: understood, of course, in its wide Darwinian sense – not as a struggle for the sheer means of existence, but as a struggle against all natural conditions unfavourable to the species. The animal species, in which individual struggle has been reduced to its narrowest limits, and the practice of mutual aid has attained the greatest development, are invariably the most numerous, the most prosperous, and the most open to further progress. The mutual protection which is obtained in this case, the possibility of attaining old age and of accumulating experience, the higher intellectual development, and the further growth of sociable habits, secure the maintenance of the species, its extension, and its further progressive evolution. The unsociable species, on the contrary, are doomed to decay. — Peter Kropotkin,Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution (1902), Conclusion.
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