Homo - sociologicus - sapiens - On the integration of sociological models of man in the theory of evolution
|WALTER DE GRUYTER GMBH
|ZEITSCHRIFT FUR SOZIOLOGIE
This essay considers the adequacy of competing concepts of man in the sociological, socio-economic, and socio-biological theoretical traditions for the explanation of complex social phenomena. It is suggested that the model of the socialized person - which is preferred by the mainstream of sociological theoretical tradition - be modified by embedding it in an evolutionary concept which takes account of the objections from the economic tradition, which takes individual decisions into account, as well as the objections from the biological tradition, which considers genetic influences, without eliminating the independent significance of culture for sociological explanations. A theoretical outline of the evolutionary approach indicates that an application of Darwinian theory to socio-cultural phenomena is possible in which genetic, situational, and cultural influences act together as causally independent factors. Culture is interpreted here as an adaptive process in which the genetically inherited relations between organism and environment are expanded into wider emerging forms of social systems und cultural environments. With regard to causal explanations due to evolutionary mechanisms the contribution of human individuals to the dynamic aspects of socio-cultural phenomena is pointed out.
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checked on Mar 4, 2024