Charles Darwin: The Descent of Man

(1871)

Explanation and Analysis of the Document

In chapter XXI, Darwin offers a summary and conclusion of The Descent of Man. His chief conclusion is that “man is descended from some less highly organised form,” a conclusion he reaches by seeing natural phenomena as connected. One thing leads to another, and the direction of development tends to be toward greater organization, which proceeds in small steps by slight variation. The source of variation lies more in the constitution of the organism than in the surrounding conditions in which the organism develops. And the process, in humans...

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Charles Darwin (Library of Congress)

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