The Theory states that tribes whose members sacrifice themselves for the welfare of the group, are less likely to go extinct than tribes whose members prioritize their own selfish interests.

Contrasting Argument

Even in the group of altruists, there will almost certainly be a dissenting minority who refuse to make any sacrifice. If there is just one selfish rebel, prepared to exploit the altruism of the rest, then he, by definition, is more likely {8} than they are to survive and have children. Each of these children will tend to inherit his selfish traits. After several generations of this natural selection, the ‘altruistic group’ will be overrun by selfish individuals, and will be indistinguishable from the selfish group. Even if we grant the improbable chance existence initially of pure altruistic groups without any rebels, it is very difficult to see what is to stop selfish individuals migrating in from neighbouring selfish groups, and, by inter-marriage, contaminating the purity of the altruistic groups.Book - The Selfish Gene by Richard Dawkins

Created on: 2020-10-19 Inspired by: Link: Related: Evolution | Selfishness | Community