The above quoted lines of George Orwell in the book “The Animal Farm”, clearly denote the kind of society that the modern man inhabits (Quinn, 2014). The term “Social Darwinism” is often used by the various Sociologists as well as theorists to define the process by means of which the intellectually, emotionally as well as the mentally fit individuals survive over the weaklings in the society (Hodgson, 2014). Many people link the origin of the term with Charles Darwin and his “On The origin of Species” (1859). However, recent sociologist connect the term with Thomas Henry Huxley and Joseph Fischer, who is often given the official credit for the coinage of the term in his review article on “The History of Landholding in Ireland” (1877) (Hodgson, 2014). In the modern age, the term has undergone radical transformations and diverse theorists use it for various purposes.
Natural law, can be defined as the philosophy, which asserts that there are certain rights that the human beings inherit by virtue of their human nature (Rommen, 2012). The philosophers argue that the human beings are endowed with these rights by virtue of their nature, which is traditionally considered to be transcended by a transcendent source or the Omnipotent God (Rommen, 2012). According to these philosophers, the natural laws are universal and they are independent of the political order, state, legislature and for that matter society (Rommen, 2012). According to another set of philosophers the natural laws can refer to the use of thinking power or reason to access human nature in order to bring out binding rules or guidelines of moral behavior from the aspects of God’s or nature’s creation of mankind as well as reality (Hodgson, 2014). The concept of natural laws when related to the concept of social Darwinism will reveal two points of importance to the philosophers as well as the various sociologists. The first argument is that the human beings are not like the other animals of the world whose sole motto is to look after the physical needs of their body. The human beings, contrary to the concept of social Darwinism are rational as well as thinking creatures, who cannot just let the weaker sets of their population perish at the expense of the stronger ones (Weingart et al., 2103). The second argument states the fact that contrary to the idea propagated by the natural laws that the human beings are endowed with certain rights by virtue of their beings, the human beings have earned that position by being the fittest among the other sets of organisms that have inhabited the Earth ever since its creation by the process of evolution (Weingart et al., 2103). The relation between the concepts of natural law and social Darwinism does not surprise me as that is something, which we experience around ourselves in our everyday life. It is be noted that our society when thoroughly analyzed is a modeled on the these two theories itself.
Racism, can be defined, as the belief or the thinking process, which places one race or ethnic group above the other. This results in the consequent processes of discrimination as well as prejudice faced by the people belonging to some particular religious groups as well as communities. The relation between racism and social Darwinism is an interesting one and many people consider that the origin of the institution of racism had its roots in the concept of social Darwinism. Darwin propounded that the concept of the “survival of the fittest” and the extinction of the weaker sections of the population (Darwin, 2017). This concept when applied to the concept of racism will reveal the fact the people who support the institution of racism consider themselves to be fitter sections of the population and the people who face racism are the weaker sections of the population.
The article tries to explain the issues the racism as well as the discrimination faced by the individuals on the basis of the concept of social Darwinism as the theory propounded by Charles Darwin in his book “On The Origin of Species”. The article clearly states that, “race is not biological but still it is real”. This can be explain on the basis of the theory of “survival of the fittest” propounded by Darwin in his book, which states that some people by being more fit compared to the other entities of the population are superior to the weaker sections of the population (Darwin, 2017). Therefore, the blacks as well as other ethnic groups which are not considered to be direct descendents of the Aryan race often face the cruel institution of racism and its related evils. This theory is utilized by the various theorist to explain the elimination of the various sections of the ethnic groups in comparison to the pure white races.
Therefore, from the above discussion it becomes clear that the concepts of natural law as well as social Darwinism play an important role in the institution of racism faced by the weaker sections of the populations. These concepts are utilized by the various theorists to justify the institutions of racism as well as slavery. Therefore, the theory propounded by Darwin, which states the concept of the “survival of the fittest” becomes very important in this regard.
Darwin, C. (2017). On the origin of species by means of natural selection. Litres.
Hodgson, G. M. (2014). Economics in the Shadows of Darwin and Marx. Edward Elgar Publishing.
Quinn, E. (2014). Critical Companion to George Orwell. Infobase Publishing.
Rommen, H. A. (2012). The Natural Law. Liberty Fund.
Weingart, P., Mitchell, S. D., Richerson, P. J., & Maasen, S. (Eds.). (2013). Human by nature: Between biology and the social sciences. Psychology Press.