The fallacy of natural selection

The idea from evolutionary psychology that we evolved by natural selection and that we are adapted to the world of the Paleolithic is a fallacy. We may certainly have some archaic characteristics but modern man is as much adapted to the Neolithic and to civilization as anything else. The fallacy of natural selection has totally confused the issue: man adapts very quickly to new situations. That said, no one has really arrived at a scientific understanding of evolution beyond the idiocy of Darwinism so we can’t be quite sure just who/what ‘man’ is…

This is why Jackson has for nearly four decades been suggesting that the key to designing more sustainable systems is to recognize that we are “a species out of context.” Evolution by natural selection adapted us to a gathering-and-hunting lifestyle in small band-level societies. Prior to the invention of agriculture, humans were mostly foragers living in a social group of probably no more than 100 people, and often far fewer. Not only did our bodies evolve for that way of living, but so did our brains (our brains are part of our bodies, of course, but it’s important to emphasize this because so many people think of the human mind as somehow being distinct from the body).

Source: Opinion | The Politics of Overconsumption and Getting the Scale Right | Wes Jackson

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