Tuesday, November 11, 2014


Is Competition the Law of Nature with Mary Catherine Bateson

Charles Darwin stood the biology of his time on its head with his theory of evolution by natural selection, and his ideas about competition still lend authority to economics.  Herbert Spencer, a popular precursor of sociology who was Darwin's contemporary, has been regarded as the founder of "social Darwinism" but actually Darwin borrowed from him the concept of the "survival of the fittest," coined by Spencer on the basis of his observations of the ferocious early years of industrialization.  Biologists today are recognizing more and more examples of cooperation as key to evolution -- when will the economists (and the politicians) catch on? Mary Catherine Bateson is one of Hancock's resident authors after a career teaching anthropology and linguistics at George Mason, Amherst, Northeastern and Harvard as well as abroad in Iran and the Philippines.  Free and open to all.

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