The biologists, writing in a Darwinian perspective, emphasize the continuities rather than the differences among species. The facts of evolution, citizens are told, imply that humans are biologically prepared to be self-interested and motivated to maximize their status, pleasure, and reproductive potential. These scholars simply ignore the glaring fact that the first human groups were cooperative and that contemporary societies that have enjoyed long periods of peace, including the Balinese and the Batek of Malaysia, discourage intense competitiveness and encourage cooperation. If maximizing our reproductive potential is the most urgent human need, it is puzzling that during the opening decades of the seventeenth century more than one in five adults in England remained unmarried because of economic conditions that motivated many to avoid the shame of being unable to support a family. Among humans, preserving one's virtue trumps the motive for maximizing one's inclusive fitness every time.

source: Jerome Kagan, An Argument for Mind, 158 tags: Evolution, General Revelation, Virtue