Charles Robert Darwin achievements | Charles Darwin's Theory of Evolution by natural selection

Charles Robert Darwin achievements

Darwin Day: Celebrating an achievement for humanity

February 12, 2009 is Darwin Day, the 200th anniversary of the birth of Charles Darwin. His masterwork, On the Origin of Species, was published 150 years ago, in November 1859, initiating a revolution in science that continues to this day.

Although Darwin’s political views were far from radical, his insights became the central weapons in the battle to establish materialist science as the basis for our understanding of the world, and contributed to the development of Marxism.

Charles Robert Darwin was, to say the least, an unlikely revolutionary. His father was a prominent physician and wealthy investor; his grandfather was Josiah Wedgwood, founder of one of the largest manufacturing companies in Europe. He could have lived a life of leisure — instead he devoted his life to science.

After graduating from Cambridge in 1831, 22-year-old Charles Darwin boarded the British survey ship HMS Beagle as an unpaid naturalist, subsidized by his doting father. When he returned after five years, he had thousands of pages of scientific observations, over 1, 500 carefully preserved specimens — and growing doubts about the dominant scientific and religious ideas of his day.

A heretical conclusion

At that time, Darwin wrote in his 1861 introduction to Origin, “the great majority of naturalists believed that species were immutable productions, and had been separately created.” Biblical literalists and deists alike agreed that species were fixed by divine law. Dogs might vary in appearance, but dogs don’t give birth to cats.

After five years of travel and two years of study at home, Darwin came to a heretical conclusion: species were not immutable. All animals were descended from common ancestors, different species resulted from gradual changes over millions of years, and God had nothing to do with it.

It is difficult, today, to understand how shocking this idea would be to the middle and upper classes of Darwin’s time. Religion wasn’t just the “opium of the masses”— it gave the wealthy moral justification for their privileged lives in a world of constant change and gross inequality. The world was unfolding according to God’s wishes, and anyone who questioned that endangered the very fragile social order.

Nevertheless, by the 1830s educated people knew that the Genesis creation story couldn’t be literally true. The rise of capitalism in the 1700s had led to booms in mining and canal building: those works exposed geological layers and ancient fossils that clearly contradicted the idea of a recently-created earth.

See also:



Routledge Sex Theories and the Shaping of Two Moderns: Hemingway and H.D. (Studies in Major Literary Authors)
Book (Routledge)

"Age of Consent" is an arbitrary rule

by all_things_being_equal

Particularly in an age where
sexual-oriented “hot-spots” like gay marriages are changing our perception of what is acceptable in society, will our views on underage sex also need to undergo an overhaul?
Roman Polanski is a case in point. His tryst with a 12 year old girl forced him to flee the U.S. Some thirty years later, the “victim” (now an adult woman) says she has no issue with Polanksi. If the “victim” of the crime is ready to forgive and forget, should we still enforce the punishment? To this day, Polanski chooses to stay out of the U.S. to avoid prosecution.

While we can legislate for the age of consent

by --

It’s virtually impossible to enforce those laws when both parties consent in private. So are we focusing on the symptom rather than the cause? Are we enforcing out-dated moral standards on youth who are living in a completely new world? In an age where sexual-oriented “hot-spots” like gay marriages are changing our perception of what is acceptable in society, will our views on underage sex also need to undergo an overhaul? Roman Polanski is a case in point. His tryst with a 12 year old girl forced him to flee the U.S. Some thirty years later, the “victim” (now an adult woman) says she has no issue with Polanksi

The Polanksi case also raises the question

by PavlovsDong

Of the “victimless” crime. While we can legislate for the age of consent, it’s virtually impossible to enforce those laws when both parties consent in private. So are we focusing on the symptom rather than the cause? Are we enforcing out-dated moral standards on youth who are living in a completely new world? In an age where sexual-oriented “hot-spots” like gay marriages are changing our perception of what is acceptable in society, will our views on underage sex also need to undergo an overhaul?
Roman Polanski is a case in point. His tryst with a 12 year old girl forced him to flee the U

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Help the Darwin Foundation Help Galapagos  — Huffington Post
Please join us for a special celebration of a half-century of groundbreaking scientific research and conservation by the Charles Darwin Research Station, the oldest, largest, and most successful scientific institution in the Galapagos Islands.

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