Re: aat-reply to Moore.

Elaine Morgan (
Sun, 09 Jul 1995 22:50:49 GMT

-- Ralph Holloway says: Don't insult my intelligence by citing
E.O.Wilson as if he were some kind of last word on human evolution...

I assure you I would never do that. In fact (despite the widespread
rumour that Morgan "won't write papers") I have a paper in press for
"Homo" detailing some of the reasons why I do not think he is the last

I would not dream of insulting your intelligence at all. I think
it is formidable. I would only say I suspect that when you dismiss "the
Hardy thing" so sweepingly you are basing your assessment on gut
feelings and relying on second-hand and out-of-date sources. To say "it
has no direct factual basis" is meaningless. The factual basis for it
is exactly the same in kind and quality as the factual basis for the
conventional scenario.

You say:
> Because people like Dawkins and Wilson don't come out blasting AAT is
>hardly evidence that they accept it either in whole or in part, which
> the spin you are trying to put on this...

Please let me put the record straight. I have absolutely no reason to
believe that Dawkins or Pinker or Wilson etc. accept AAT. I made no
such claim. All I said about them was that they commended Dennett's
book. It is a long and excellent book (I would say that, wouldn't I?) and
the AAT reference is a very brief digression in it. We can assume they
were praising the book as a whole and willing to overlook that section.
Let me make the position even clearer by saying that Dennett himself
doesn't say he believes in it. He merely concludes it will be
interesting to see how this debate ends up. And it will, won't it?

I am very grateful to the people you call the "defenders of my faith"
out there. I am also grateful to the defenders of your faith out there,
because they expose any remaining weaknesses in the hypothesis and
thereby help to strengthen it.

I'm sorry you're "not going to waste much more time on it". We can do
with people of your calibre. It was nice of you to drop in.

Elaine Morgan