Against human nature

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Abstract

Are cultural differences superimposed upon a universal human nature? The appeal to an essentialist concept of human nature is a defensive reaction to the legacy of racist science left by Darwin's argument in The Descent of Man. Humans are made to appear different in degree from their evolutionary antecedents by attributing the movement of history to a process of culture that differs in kind from the biological process of evolution. The specifications of evolved human nature are supposed to lie in the genes. However, human capacities are not genetically specified but emerge within processes of ontogenetic development. Moreover the circumstances of development are continually shaped through human activity. There is consequently no human nature that has escaped the current of history.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEvolutionary episetmology, language and culture
EditorsDiederik Aerts, N. Gontier, J. P. Van Bendegem
Place of PublicationSpringer, Dordrecht
Pages259-281
Number of pages22
Publication statusPublished - 2006

Keywords

  • LANGUAGE

Cite this

Ingold, T. (2006). Against human nature. In D. Aerts, N. Gontier, & J. P. Van Bendegem (Eds.), Evolutionary episetmology, language and culture (pp. 259-281). Springer, Dordrecht.

Against human nature. / Ingold, Timothy.

Evolutionary episetmology, language and culture. ed. / Diederik Aerts; N. Gontier; J. P. Van Bendegem. Springer, Dordrecht, 2006. p. 259-281.

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

Ingold, T 2006, Against human nature. in D Aerts, N Gontier & J. P. Van Bendegem (eds), Evolutionary episetmology, language and culture. Springer, Dordrecht, pp. 259-281.
Ingold T. Against human nature. In Aerts D, Gontier N, J. P. Van Bendegem, editors, Evolutionary episetmology, language and culture. Springer, Dordrecht. 2006. p. 259-281
Ingold, Timothy. / Against human nature. Evolutionary episetmology, language and culture. editor / Diederik Aerts ; N. Gontier ; J. P. Van Bendegem. Springer, Dordrecht, 2006. pp. 259-281
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