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CHAPTER IV. DARWINISM AND TELEOLOGY. When the first edition of the
' History of Materialism' appeared, Darwinism was still new; the
parties were just taking up their positions, or, more strictly, the
rapidly growing party of ' German Darwinians' was still in process
of forming, and the reaction, which at present sees here the most
threatened point in the old theory of things, was not yet properly
in harness, because it had not yet properly appreciated the range
of the great problem and the inward power of the new doctrine.
Since then, the interest of friends and foes has been so much
concentrated on this point, that not only an extensive literature
has sprung up on Darwin and Darwinism, but that we may say that the
Darwinian controversy is to-day what the general Materialistic
controversy was formerly. Biichner is still ever finding new
readers for ' Kraft und Stoff, ' but we no longer hear a literary
outcry of indignation when a new edition appears. Moleschott, the
true author of the Materialistic movement, is almost forgotten by
the great public, and even Karl Vogt is now seldom mentioned except
in reference to some special question in anthropology or some
isolated and immortal utterance of his drastic humour. Instead of
this, every periodical takes sides for or against Darwin; there
appear almost daily larger or smaller treatises on the theory of
descent, natural selection, and especially, as we may expect, on
the descent of man, since there are many members of this particular
species who lose their wits, ifany doubt is raised of the
genuineness of their ancestral tree. Despite this great movement,
we may still maintain unchanged nearly everything that we wrote on
Darwinism eightjrears ago, though we can no longer leave the matter
where it was then. The material has ..
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