Mutual Aid

A Factor of Evolution

No cover

Mutual Aid (1972, New York University Press)

Hardcover, 277 pages

English language

Published April 1, 1972 by New York University Press.

ISBN:
9780814745557
OCLC Number:
8993857

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Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution is a 1902 collection of anthropological essays by Russian naturalist and anarchist philosopher Peter Kropotkin. The essays, initially published in the English periodical The Nineteenth Century between 1890 and 1896, explore the role of mutually-beneficial cooperation and reciprocity (or "mutual aid") in the animal kingdom and human societies both past and present. It is an argument against theories of social Darwinism that emphasize competition and survival of the fittest, and against the romantic depictions by writers such as Jean-Jacques Rousseau, who thought that cooperation was motivated by universal love. Instead Kropotkin argues that mutual aid has pragmatic advantages for the survival of human and animal communities and, along with the conscience, has been promoted through natural selection. Mutual Aid is considered a fundamental text in anarchist communism. It presents a scientific basis for communism as an alternative to the historical materialism of the Marxists. …

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Subjects

  • Cooperation
  • Social groups
  • Social institutions
  • SOCIAL EVOLUTION
  • Social Science / Sociology / General

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