Evolution and The Island of Doctor Moreau

1437 WordsJul 17, 20186 Pages
There are a lot of misconceptions about Darwin's theory of evolution. One of the biggest is that he called the theory by that name. Albrecht von Haller used the word "evolution" in 1744 to mean "to unroll," so the word was around in Darwin's time, but Darwin never used it in the sense we use it today. It was added later by others, including Herbert Spencer, who is responsible for the theory we call Social Darwinism. This theory is misnamed; it is not based on Darwin's work, but Spencer's. Darwin did not come up with his theory out of nowhere. Like anyone else who has made discoveries, he was influenced by others. For quite a long time before Darwin, people didn't look beyond the Biblical creation story. Such things as fossils,…show more content…
63) And finally we get to Charles Darwin himself. As a young man from an elite and wealthy family, Charles's possible career choices were limited: there weren't many professions "respectable" enough. He started off studying medicine but couldn't stand to see blood. Charles earned a degree in theology, but his real interest, which he pursued outside the classroom, was natural studies. For three years as an undergraduate he "...mixed with some of the leading scientists of his day, at a level far more intimate than would be possible for an undergraduate today." (Ruse, p. 33) Through his connections Darwin eventually joined the H.M.S. Beagle on a navigational trip around the world. There is some debate as to whether Darwin was the official ship's naturalist; by some accounts he was only a passenger, because he lacked a degree in the natural sciences. At the time of his departure, Charles was also creationist, meaning that he held to the Biblical view of the origins of the earth and its creatures. He spent five years traveling on the Beagle, collecting specimens of things he encountered in his travels. He never adapted to sea travel, and was sick for most of the time he was on the ship; when his travels were over, he settled down permanently. When he first returned, Darwin considered himself to be "a geologist, (not a biologist)," (Ruse, p. 34). Some time after his return to

More about Evolution and The Island of Doctor Moreau

Open Document