A teoria da dupla herança e a evolução da moralidade

Fábio Portela Lopes Almeida, Paulo César Coelho Abrantes


A darwinian evolutionary approach can contribute to reassess philosophical problems in different fields, including ethics and moral theory. Sociobiology and evolutionary psychology address these issues by presupposing mechanisms such as kin selection and reciprocal altruism. However, these mechanisms can’t account for cooperation in the human species. Dual inheritance theory addresses human cooperation differently, by taking into account the above-mentioned classical biological mechanisms without ignoring, however, relevant knowledge produced by social scientists. According to this approach, human social psychology comprises tribal social instincts and symbolic markers. One implication of this approach is that there are innate and universal moral principles hardwired in the human mind-brain, which where selected through an evolutionary process that makes life possible in large, structured social groups. Although innate, these principles are plastically shaped to meet the demands of different cultural niches in particular societies.


Dual inheritance; evolution of morality; ethics; darwinism

DOI: https://doi.org/10.5007/1808-1711.2012v16n1p1

Copyright (c)


Principia: an internationnal journal of epistemology
Published by NEL - Epistemology and Logic Research Group
Federal University of Santa Catarina - UFSC
Center of Philosophy and Human Sciences – CFH
Campus Reitor João David Ferreira Lima
Florianópolis, Santa Catarina - Brazil
CEP: 88040-900

 ISSN: 1414-4217
EISSN: 1808-171

e-mail: principia@contato.ufsc.br