Robert Mackintosh (1858-1933), a professor at the Congregationalist Lancashire Independent College, traces the influence of biology and evolutionism on the study of human ethics and society during the second half of the nineteenth century in this 1899 book. He begins with Comte's founding of sociology, and continues with the renewed appeal to biology for the understanding of human affairs found in the work of Darwin, Spencer and their circle. He then looks at Benjamin Kidd's Social Evolution, published in 1894 (and also reissued in this series). Fifty years after Comte, Kidd argued that sociology required further grounding by a new recourse to biology. Mackintosh supported Kidd's view. If biological clues are to afford guidance for human conduct, Mackintosh contended, they must be supplemented by a clearer moral and religious vision, and in philosophy by some scheme of metaphysical evolutionism. His work marks a transition from Darwinism to a new Hegelianism.
Cambridge Library Collection
Date of Publication
Cambridge Library Collection - Science and Religion