Evolution: Education and Outreach

, Volume 3, Issue 2, pp 275-287

First online:

Darwinian Morality

  • Catherine WilsonAffiliated withSchool of Divinity, History and Philosophy, University of Aberdeen Email author 

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The paper explores the significance of Darwinian evolution for morality and moral theory. After presenting Darwin’s own views on the evolution of the moral sense and the Victorian spectrum of opinion on the relevance of natural selection to morals, I argue that a consideration of human evolutionary history can be brought to bear meaningfully on a number of contemporary issues, including the nature of work and family relations. There is no reason, however, to suppose that the fact of human variation and the heritability of traits forces any substantial concession to apologists for social inequality.


Altruism Ambivalence Darwin Darwinism Eugenics Evolutionary ethics Equality IQ Morality