Mark Twain's Belief that the Real Descent of Human Morality Essay

Mark Twain's Belief that the Real Descent of Human Morality Essay

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Mark Twain theorizes that man is in fact the so called “lower animal” and has descended from a single atom to insect to animal from a long line of innocence. The lowest stage would be reached and would become known as the human being. Twain counter argues the popular theory of Darwinism which could be considered controversial. However, he conducted experiments using the scientific method to provide evidence to his claim: the principle of human morality, as disputed in “The Damned Human Race”, has seemingly not evolved to the same extent of the morals of what he believes to be the “higher animals”. Moral sense as defined by Twain is the quality that enables wrong doing. Without this this “sense” man would not be capable of doing wrong.
One of Twain’s earliest experiments came shortly after reading about a group of men that organized a hunt for buffalo. Although the hunt provided food, it was ordered mainly for the pure entertainment of an English Earl. Seventy two buffalo in the Great Plains; murdered. Only a part of one was consumed. The other seventy one were left in the fields to rot. Twain compares the Earl to an anaconda. Seven calves were confined to the same cage as one anaconda. Right away, the great snake devoured its first calf. When it was finished, that was it. No interest in the remaining six calves was shown. He repeated this experiment multiple times with the same end result. Man is cruel. Seventy two buffalo were not essential to the survival of the hunters and they were aware of that; however they killed them simply because they could. Man often takes more than necessary versus what they need whether survival is dependent on it or not. Greed will always triumph.
Twain compares man to cats in a sense that bo...


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...the “higher animals”. His sentiment clouds his sense of morality causing chaos to occur. Animals have no concept of religion and they rely solely on reasoning therefore openly accepting a greater variation of ideas that are foreign to them.
Mark Twain went against the universal theory of Darwinism to introduce an opposing theory; that the human race is lowest on the hierarchy of evolution. From his conduction of experiments, observations, and knowledge of history he was able to validate his argument. He successfully presented a new understanding to the morality of mankind along the way. He calls this: The Moral Sense. The quality that enables wrong doing is only existent to man. Having the ability to distinguish between good and evil, does more harm by also creating the ability to act in an evil manner. Evil can only exist where there is a consciousness to it.

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