The Processes of Ongoing Human Evolution

The Processes of Ongoing Human Evolution

The Processes of Ongoing Human Evolution

The Processes of Ongoing Human Evolution

Excerpt

A hundred years ago Charles Darwin published his classic explanation of evolution through natural selection. The work deals with the origin of species, as the title indicates; it is retrospective in outlook, explaining past events; and almost no mention is made of man, except a comment that "in the distant future . . . light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history."

A reading of Darwin's works and that of his successors during the last 100 years makes these points clear: First, the theory of natural selection applies equally and, indeed, is best understood only by examining evolution at subspecific levels. Second, general principles are involved which have predictive value, albeit more in respect to the "how" than the "what" of human evolution. And third, man is inevitably the most interesting subject of evolutionary study.

The Darwin centennial celebration has included a series of important . . .

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