A CONCEPTUAL ANALYSIS OF SOCIAL DARWINISM, COMPETITIVE VERSUS CONSTRUCTIVIST PARADIGMS PUBLISHED

Lungu, Marius-Robert; Urlica Alina-Andreea; Coroama-Dorneanu Laura Ioana None mariuslungu@usab-tm.ro
An ideology is a mixture of scientific and unscientific statements, which often include rational alongside irrational claims or assertions. That is what their success relies on and it also explains why ideologies are difficult to reject. It is easy to be mislead into thinking that they are entirely scientific, when they are only partially accurate. Ideologies are often meant to establish and legitimize a new worldview or even to replace religion as a form of secular religion. Social Darwinism may be regarded as such an ideology, given its fatal flaws which the paper purports to explore. The starting point of this particular ideology was Charles Darwin's theory of natural selection, taken to include slightly different meanings than initially intended. According to this theory, organisms better adapted to the environment are more likely to eliminate their competitors. Additionally, this aspect was also deemed a mark of superiority as Social Darwinism states that human groups, races, and societies are subject to natural selection in the same manner that plants and animals are in the context of nature. Several philosophers, sociologists, economists and historians have taken up Darwin's theory, reinterpreting some accurately scientific facts so as to serve underlying ideological purposes. The question is whether it was right to apply the theory of natural selection to human society, which is supposedly a higher level of self-organization than that of nature. Given this supplementary hypothesis, the terminology of "social Darwinism" was later introduced and researchers who supported this novel outlook were named social Darwinists, despite essential differences from Darwin’s doctrine. The main concepts of social Darwinism include tenets such as fierce natural selection dictating success, the survival of the fittest, and the struggle for existence, which are considered under a radically different ethical paradigm by social darwinian interpretations.We argue that this kind of outlook has paradigmatically affected the world we live in a way which is unbeneficial to humanity and it should therefore be replaced by a more constructive, cooperative paradigm which we are striving to enforce, as educators within the humanities.
conceptual analisys, philosophy, social darwinism, natural selection, competition, cooperation, construction of meaning
Social Sciences
Presentation: oral

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