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Social Darwinism Theory - Term Paper Example

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The author of the paper titled "Social Darwinism Theory" focuses on the Social Darwinism term that used to refer to the application of ideas and concepts applied to the social world which are allegedly derived from Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution…
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Social Darwinism Theory
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Download file to see previous pages As Bellomy points out, the term has always been used as an epithet if we look at the history of its usage, to represent everything evil such as warfare, racism, and imperialism (Bellomy, 1984). The impact of this term on social science and political ideology has been argued to be essential to assess the use of such terms in discourse and the history of ideas that they may represent. Hence, it is important that we first look at what meaning was given to Social Darwinism by different theorists and how it became a significant theory in history in order to delve into a deeper analysis of it.

“Social Darwinism” is a term used to refer to the application of ideas and concepts applied to the social world which are allegedly derived from Charles Darwin’s theory of evolution (Leonard, 2009). There is much controversy surrounding Social Darwinism, its historical significance, its usage and applicability and most importantly its association with some of the known social scientists in histories such as Darwin and Spencer. The debate around the definition of the term has in most cases revolved around whether or not Social Darwinism came out of the works of Darwin and other theorists that wrote about the role of biology to explain the social hierarchies present during that era, like Europe, America, and other continents witnessed the aftermath of industrialization. There are basically two types of approaches to the definition of the term that has been put forward to explain the different approaches theorists have taken in order to explain the term (Crook, 1996). The “generalist” approach basically refers to Social Darwinism as the analysis of social inequality by the help of evolutionary and developmental ideas using Darwinian terminologies such as “survival of the fittest” but not explicitly relying on the original works of Darwin (Weiler). The second type known as the “restrictionist” approach, in contrast, argues that mere use of phrases that represent the work of a theorist such as “survival of fittest” does not define the theorist as a Social Darwinist (Weiler). ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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