On Genetic Interests: Family, Ethnicity, And Humanity in an Age of Mass Migration

Transaction Publishers, 01.10.2006 - 388 Seiten

From an evolutionary perspective, individuals have a vi-tal interest in the reproduction of their genes. Yet this interest is overlooked by social and political theory at a time when we need to steer an adaptive course through the unnatural modern world of uneven population growth and decline, global mobility, and loss of family and communal ties. In modern Darwinian theory, bearing children is only one way to reproduce. Since we share genes with our families, ethnic groups, and the species as a whole, ethnocentrism and humanism can be adaptive. They can also be hazardous when taken to extremes. On Genetic Interests canvasses strategies and ethics for conserving our genetic interests in an environmentally sustainable manner sensitive to the interests of others.

"[This] is a fresh and deep contribution to the sociobiology of humans, combining genetics with social science in original ways."--Edward O. Wilson, Harvard University

"The book greatly expands Hamiltonian kin selection' by making ethnies in control of territory the central arena of selfish genery' in a modern world of mass migration."--Pierre van den Berghe, University of Washington, Seattle

"Salter argues that all humans have a vital interest in genetic continuity that is threatened by mass migration. Salter advocates non-aggressive universal nationalism' as part of a balanced fitness portfolio' that includes investments in three levels of genetic interests--family, ethny, and the species as a whole. The synthesis is persuasive; the policy formulations provocative."--Irenus Eibl-Eibesfeldt, Max Planck Society

"Five stars for Salter--he has provided us with a deep and compelling explanation of what most people know and what guides much of their behavior, but fear to acknowledge publicly."--Michael T. McGuire, UCLA

"We are indeed all part of each other, as John Donne insisted even before the help of evolutionary genetics. But we are more part of some than others, and the nature of these boundaries of ethnic kinship has been ignored, avoided or denied. After Salter's virtuoso synthesis we can no longer duck these issues which become more important daily."--Robin Fox, Rutgers University

Frank Salter is an Australian political scientist who has been a researcher with the Max Planck Society, Andechs, Germany, since 1991.

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List of Tables
Can ethnic altruism be adaptive? Hamiltons rule free riders and
Fitness portfolios for individuals who are intermarried of mixed
On the ethics of defending genetic interests

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