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ERIC Number: EJ863722
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009-Feb
Pages: 3
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 19
ISSN: ISSN-0002-7685
The Struggle for Existence: 1859 & Today
Walsh, Joseph A.
American Biology Teacher, v71 n2 p74-76 Feb 2009
The theory that natural selection is the key to adaptive evolution, and the reasoning for his conclusions, were Darwin's contributions to science. However, only half of Americans accept the fact of evolution as true (Gallup, 2008). Walsh contends that there are three reasons that students today find life's existential struggle less apparent. First, popular books suggest that modern American children suffer from "Nature Deficit Disorder" brought on by children's lack of exposure to unstructured play in unstructured natural environments (Louv, 2005). Second, children in developed countries do not feel that they themselves are in a struggle for existence. Third, it is difficult to reconcile the "Golden Rule" or the idea of an omnipotent and beneficent Creator with genocide, famine, and epidemics. The notions of good and evil in Nature arise only when one anthropomorphizes predator and prey intentions, but it is difficult for students to avoid this pattern of thinking. Teachers should be cognizant of these constructions that students bring to the classroom, and remind them that Nature may be pitiless, but not humans. (Contains 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A