Monday, November 3, 2014

Mary Douglas : modernity VERSUS darwinism

One of the hallmarks of the Era of Modernity (1870s-1960s) was a sudden worldwide urge among the 'progressive' nations to begin to closely regulate and restrict immigration , a move I argue was directly contrary to the co-current move to embrace Darwin's theory of Natural Evolution as the best engine of Progress.

Now there is no solid proof that having an university education, or having lots of money or coming from prominent families actually makes one more logical or rational when fiercely defending a privileged existence , so we needn't be too surprised at this contradiction in actions among society's powerful.

In Evolutionary theory , a successful sub species (success being defined in evolutionary terms by the number of offspring who live to reproduce) will tend to flow outward , to completely fill all examples of its biological niche.

To a consistent Darwinist (do they even exist ?) reproductive success is the only form of success.

Mankind, according to progressive Darwinists , can't really stop this biological success and really shouldn't - not if Mankind , as an overall species, is to survive and flourish.

So - in evolutionary terms - what could be more natural than the more fecund Chinese and Indians flowing forth to occupy new biological niches in places like downtown New York and London that were once fully occupied by the now reproductively-failing Anglo Saxon race ?

A worldwide trend to increased emigration had began in the 1880s as ocean travel became safer, faster and cheaper ---- soon outbound Indians and Chinese were heading for the mother-cities of the Anglo-American empire.

But Modern Progressives, Mary Douglas fans before the poor lady was even born , said no to this unexpected consequence of Anglo-American modernization.

Just as Douglas said we humans regard dirt as useful matter that is simply 'out of place' or 'doesn't know its place' , so too with these would-be migrant Indians and Chinese.

Chinese and Indian migrants as useful human matter 'out of place'

Two very nice useful races - manufacturing things for us at dead-cheap wages in their native India and China - but once 'out of place', they were simply dirty Pakis and Chinks.

Now the older theory that Darwin's dynamic Evolution was supposed to replace was that of God's Great Chain of Being.

This theory held that there was a permanently static and unique place for every species and sub species in the great scheme of things -- and that all would remain well for everyone , as long as everyone 'knew their place' and kept to it.

That is to say, that the poor and powerless must accept their lowly position in life as God-given and not try any levelling-up social revolutions.

God and Nature had ordained that the poor were poor and the rich rich -----suck it up.

Just as , according The Great Chain of Being, God had also ordained that the Chinese should remain in China and the Indians in India.

(Returning momentarily to Darwin, his theory was simultaneously used to explain why the English were allowed to leave England to rule in places like India and China.)

If the harsh new immigration restrictions from the 1890s to the 1920s were simply the Great Chain of Being re-born, I contend that they were thus far less Social Darwinian than they have seemed to historians.

That is, that they weren't simply designed to keep out those judged 'unfit' because of mental , moral and physical disabilities.

They were really intent on keeping out the biologically successful fecund Indian and Chinese races along with the fecund poor from Eastern and Southern Europe, and thus they were more designed to keep out the biologically super-fit than the biologically unfit.

Claiming that these 'races' were morally unfit as reason to reject them was simply a Social Darwinist ploy to ignore their obvious Darwinian reproductive super-fitness.

All this as part of a series of defensive mechanisms put in place by Protestant middle class elites of Northern European origins desperate to maintain their high social and economic status.

Elites deeply uncomfortable that they were even then were failing to reproduce themselves in their own lands , let alone 'go forth and multiply' in others ...

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