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Convinced Darwinian, and himself an all-round scientist, Kropotkin published in 1902 an innovative and disruptive work that starting from his field research, especially in Siberia, gives an original interpretation of the theory of evolution, uniting in an unprecedented way the Darwin’s theory with some aspects of Lamarck’s thought. Written mainly to refute the ideas of social Darwinism – supported at the time especially by Huxley – this opus magnum by Kropotkin demonstrates, thanks to an endless documentation and ingenious intuitions, how life is not at all reduced to a ruthless competition in which the strongest wins , an idea that also distorts the same thought of Darwin. On the contrary, it is cooperation, mutual aid – mutual support, in fact – that is the driving force that allows the evolutionary process to develop in the biosphere, starting with the human species. Today, more than a century after their formulation, the impact of Kropotkinian theses is now recognized not only in various human sciences such as ethnography, history or sociology, but above all in a large number of scientific disciplines such as biology, zoology or ethology.
Pëtr Kropotkin (1842-1921), in addition to being a scientist and geographer, was also one of the “founding fathers” of classical anarchism.
Pëtr Kropotkin, Il mutuo appoggio. Un fattore dell’evoluzione
329 pages, paperback