Re: Frans de Waal Strikes Back!
Without reading a single page of the book I will stick my neck out to comment -- be kind if I miss entirely. I think I have some understanding of what you are meaning regarding de Waal's sense that morality is a group phenomenon. Here is what I have been thinking that kinda fits in with what de Waal is arguing. Morality would be unnecessary if we were not social creatures and I think the converse is true - we are moral because we are social creatures. The only way society can exist at all is if we agree to cooperated with one another and cooperation implies a level of fairness and fair play -- morality, right? If morality is a necessary element of society then maybe he is on target to say it is or can be a group phenomenon.
I think Robert Burton (author of On Being Certain
) would agree with de Waal on this point. Don't you?