Monday, 11 October 2010

Genetics and the human nature

It's sometimes said that the genes determine the limits up to which, but not beyond which, a person's development may advance. This only confuses the issue. There is no way to predict all the phenotypes that a given genotype might yield in every one of the infinity of possible environments. Environments are infinitely diversified, and in the future there will exist environments that do not exist now. (...) Heredity cannot be called the "dice of destiny". Variations in body build, in physiology, and in mental traits are in part genetically conditioned, but this does not make education and social improvements any less well founded. What genetic conditioning does mean is that there is no single human nature, only human natures with different requirements for optimal growth and self-realization. The evidence of genetic conditioning of human traits, especially mental traits, must be examined with the greatest care. Theodosius Dobzhansky - Mankind evolving (1962).

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