Re: Altruism

J Cook (0002019573@MCIMAIL.COM)
Thu, 8 Aug 1996 07:30:00 EST

-- [ From: Jesse S. Cook III * EMC.Ver #2.3 ] --

-------- REPLY, Original message follows --------

Date: Thursday, 08-Aug-96 06:49 AM

From: Dwight W. Read \ Internet: (
From: Dwight W. Read \ Internet: (
To: Multiple recipients of list ANTHRO-L \ Internet:

Subject: Re: Altruism

Cook replies:

>Granted, but it would still make more sense to have a different name for how
>gets from a group of kin to the species. Assuming for the sake of argument
>that there is such a thing as altruism among nonhuman animals, would it be so
>selectively strong that all kin groups not having it would die out, leaving
>only groups that have it?

"Groups dying out" is not needed. So long as there is a selective advantage
for an allele (i.e., having the trait associated with the allele leads to
greater reporductive success--more offspring reaching reproductive age) then
that allele will replace a competing allele in the species (and assuming that
there is species wide mating).

D. Read

-------- REPLY, End of original message --------

So, what is the "competing allele" in this case? What is the opposite of
altruism? Selfishness? Is there an allele for selfishness? Or is it
selfcenteredness? Is there an allele for selfcenteredness?

I repeat my question of some time ago: has an allele for altruism ever been
positively identified in humans, never mind animals?

Jesse S. Cook III