the moral lives of animals pdf

He wanted to maximize overall happiness; and the way to maximize it is for everyone to be thoroughly selfsacrificing. “33 (Lane’s lawyer convinced the court that her diary was a mad fantasy, but even if so, it reflects prevailing morality.)

As Maynard Smith and Dawkins have noted, evolution equilibrates to an equally stable state if you assume that the magic proportions are found within individuals — that is, if each female is coy on five-sixths of her mating opportunities, and each male is coy on five-eighths of his. So there might never be a way for biologically based impulses of selflessness to pervade a group. In exotic cultures from Samoa to Mangaia to the land of the Ache in South America, a reputation for extreme promiscuity is something men actively avoid in a long-term mate.46 And an analysis of folklore reveals the “good girl/bad girl” polarity to be a chronically recurring image — in the Far East, in Islamic states, in Europe, even in pre-Columbian America.47 Meanwhile, in the psychology laboratory, David Buss has found evidence that men do dichotomize between short-term and long-term mates. He wrote to Hooker: “How awfully flat I shall feel, if, when I get my notes together on species, &c. &c, the whole thing explodes like an empty puff-ball.”20 Chapter 12: SOCIAL STATUS Seeing how ancient these expressions are, it is no wonder that they are so difficult to conceal. If he is rejected, there is not much room for personal tragedy, for he is accustomed from childhood to having his sexual impulses thwarted by some girl, and he knows that another intrigue cures this type of ill surely and swiftly. Already, various avant-garde academics — “deconstruc-tionist” literary theorists and anthropologists, adherents of “critical legal studies” — are viewing human communication as “discourses of power.” Already many people believe what the new Darwinism underscores: that in human affairs, all (or at least much) is artifice, a selfserving manipulation of image. And the reason is that they goaded our ancestors into getting their genes into the next generation. It’s easier for the man to find a younger woman than for the woman to find a man. By Marc Bekoff and Jessica Pierce . For Darwin to have talked about “random mutations” when asked how the pool of traits changes would have been like saying, “It just does — trust me.”19 It is possible to assess Darwin’s delay from the standpoint of evolutionary psychology. Of course, if you’re not a utilitarian, sorting these issues out may be more complex.

In The Voyage of the Beagle, Darwin wrote about an island off the coast of Chile: “It is a pleasant thing to see the aborigines advanced to the same degree of civilization, however low that may be, which their white conquerors have attained.”17 Any savages who feel flattered that Darwin accorded them full possession of sympathetic impulses and the underlying social instincts should be aware that he bestowed a similar honor on some nonhuman forms of life. Both believed that, in a universe which for all we know is godless, one reasonable place to find moral guidance is utilitarianism. THE FAMILY THAT STAYS TOGETHER Much of the attention paid to the “short-term” sexual strategies of women — whether unattached women willing to settle for a one-night stand, or attached women sneaking out on a mate — is fairly recent. . “13 Darwin became known at Cambridge as “the man who walks with Henslow.” Their relationship was like the millions of other such relationships in the history of our species. Criticism from colleagues — a kind of collective self-criticism — is. The whole origin of status, remember, lies in the fact that some neighbors — some of a chicken’s fellow chickens, say — are too formidable to challenge profitably. Several decades ago, the psychologist Lawrence Kohlberg tried to construct a natural sequence of human moral development, ranging from the toddler’s simple conception of “bad” (that which parents punish you for) to the detached weighing of abstract laws. He lived by the tenets that echoed in English churches and found secular expression in Samuel Smiles’s Self-Help: that a man, by exercising his “powers of action and self-denial” could stay “armed against the temptation of low indulgences.” This, as we’ve seen, was for Darwin the “highest stage in moral culture” — recognizing “that we ought to control our thoughts, and ‘not even in inmost thought to think again the sins that made the past so pleasant to us.’ “ But if Darwin was in this sense an Evangelical Christian, he could, with almost equal accuracy, be called a Hindu or Buddhist or Muslim.

Whose name the theory would then have carried will forever be an open question. — has two other variables: the cost of your altruism to you (c) and the benefit to the recipient (b). Once everyone understands this, there will be no horde of critics on the left, or on the right, for Darwinians to fend off. He worried unusually about the opinions of others. They’re just the things friends are supposed to say. Certainly that happens, and this is indeed one sense in which “randomness” greatly affects evolution. In this case, it’s an arms race of love. So no parts of human psychology are clearer candidates for evolutionary explanation than the states of mind that lead to sex: raw lust, dreamy infatuation, sturdy (or at least sturdy-feeling) love, and so on — the basic forces amid which people all over the world, including Charles Darwin, have come of age. In two societies men have been known to demand, upon marrying women with a past, that their babies be killed.27 And among the Ache hunter-gatherers of Paraguay, men sometimes collectively decide to kill a newly fatherless child. Yet he developed an approach to human nature that was largely a collection of nineteenth-century psychobiological fantasies masquerading as real science.”36 In reviewing John Bowlby’s biography of Darwin, Sulloway made the point Bowlby failed to make. Societies of cells became so highly integrated as to qualify for the title “organism,” and these organisms eventually begat us. “But then,” he wrote, “that one eye is so black and brilliant and has such powers of motion and expression that its effect is very powerful.”38 It is not surprising that when Emma Wedgwood was placed within reach — her whole face visible, and her body soon to be his — Darwin began to salivate.

The society may look, indeed, as if designed by someone who valued order over liberty. . But rather than expect direct repayment, you expect them to sacrifice for “the group,” as you did. You can see the foundation in the daily life of chimpanzees. But there could well be a built-in tendency to refrain from bestowing statusenhancing benefits on people whose status threatens your own.) We should, in the end, dispense with those norms that don’t make practical sense, but in the meanwhile we should recognize that norms often do make practical sense; they have grown out of an informal give and take that, though never purely democratic, is sometimes roughly pluralistic. Not in the grossest sense. Besides, since the advent of language, mothers have been able to tell us who’s who — instruction it is in their genetic interest to give and in our genetic interest to heed. “I feel as if I had known you for fifty years. The importance of youth in a female mate may help explain the extreme male concern with physical attractiveness in a spouse (a concern that Buss also documented in all thirty-seven cultures). It is ironic that hints of mortality can draw a man into marriage, for often it is these same hints, much later, that drive him out, to seek fresh proof of his virility. Circumstance can subdue or heighten it. (Some feminists practiced casual sex almost out of a sense of ideological commitment.) What feelings would natural selection have instilled in an aus-tralopithecine to make it employ the clever strategy of reciprocal altruism in spite of its dim-wittedness?

Men are driven away by dull, nagging wives, or by the profound soulsearching of a mid-life crisis. My Note: this is more true for younger men though. Congratulations! As we’ve seen, everyone (including Darwin) is a victim not of genes, but of genes and environment together: knobs and tunings. Plainly, females will generally make the higher investment up until birth, and, less plainly but in fact typically, this disparity continues after birth.
These cells exhibit a kind of cooperation and self-sacrifice that makes even the machine-like efficiency of an insect colony look ragged by comparison. In turning up the volume, you’ve capsulized several million years of evolution. ENGAGING THE ENEMY Darwin was not the only Victorian evolutionist who took a dim view of evolution’s “values.” Another was his friend and advocate Thomas Huxley. Darwin was not the sort of person to perform this maneuver crudely; he never forgot the little people.

The best illustration of the fluidity of chimpanzee power, and the attendant emotional and cognitive complexity of chimps, is the primatologist Frans de Waal’s gripping, almost soap-operatic, account of life among chimps housed on a two-acre island in a zoo in the Dutch town of Arnhem. . There are plenty of middle-aged women who, especially if they’re financially secure, can take or leave their husbands. SUGARCOATED SCIENCE One common reaction to discussions of morality in light of the new Darwinism is: Aren’t we getting a little ahead of the game here? Congruence between the Freudian and Darwinian views of psychic conflict has been stressed by Randolph Nesse and the psychiatrist Alan T. Lloyd. — No, no won’t do. In addition, she has done all kinds of other things that allowed me to write this book without going totally crazy. Leda Cosmides has shown that people are good at solving otherwise baffling logical puzzles when the puzzles are cast in the form of social exchange — in particular, when the object of the game is to figure out if someone is cheating. He tried to be seen as good. Thus each player may reap in the future what he has sown in the past — just as with reciprocal altruism. And the new alpha may thereafter make a habit of daunting his predecessor, and all other subjects; he runs through the colony, pounding the ground, heading toward a series of apes that, by ducking, acknowledge his supremacy — and he may slap one or two of them anyway for good measure. Whether he wanted to produce unimpeachable evidence of his priority, after sensing Wallace gaining on him, will never be known.)

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