Dawkins's The Immortal Co.

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The Selfish Gene has several underlying concepts supporting the notion that all living beings serve as a vehicle for passing genes from one generation to the next. To introduce the idea of the selfish gene, Dawkins makes clear of what the book is about and what it isn’t. As an introduction, this book is not about our genes literally being selfish, as genes have no intentions of being selfish. Dawkins does NOT intend for this to be a moral guideline, nor does he promote complete selfishness for the sake of individual survival. Likewise, Dawkins doesn’t present the false dichotomy of nature versus nurture in his argument of the selfish gene. All Dawkins is proposing is, “we, and all animals, are machines created by our genes.” (2) If genes (unintentionally)…show more content…
This molecule was able to replicate itself, and although there were times when errors occur in the process, it ultimately allows for evolution to take place. Though evolution has been promoted and accepted throughout the scientific community, Dawkins makes an interesting point about evolution: nothing actually wants to evolve. (18) Regardless of replicators wanting to continue replicating, evolution takes over. Competition is also discussed in this chapter as it is a huge proponent in evolution. In chapter three, titled The Immortal Coil, Dawkins directly discusses the “selfish behavior” of a gene in which it always wishes to be preserved. The coil Dawkins talks about is the shape of the double helixes in DNA. Simply put, if a gene is able to survive in one generation, it would hope to survive in several other generations beyond that. It is because of this that the gene is selfish. To expand on the selfish behavior of the gene, chapter four discusses behavior based on purpose. It is suggested that purposiveness evolves into consciousness for animals. A statement Dawkins uses to describe purpose in this chapter is, “The 'purpose machine', the machine or thing that behaves as if it had a conscious purpose, is equipped with some kind of measuring device which measures the discrepancy between the current state of things, and the 'desired' state.” (50) It is implied that genes indirectly controls our

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