I found an interesting article in the BBC(http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science_and_environment/10158856.stm) that got me thinking about communism in respect to its(Marx's) concept of species-being. The article was about locusts and the interesting way their brains swell when in the presence of a swarm. This draws interesting parallels with Marx's and Fauerbach's idea of species-being.

They both postulated that being a social creature, man is only fully human and fully capable when they are engaged as a community. In other words, when they are both part of and constitute the species. Compare this to locusts who by themselves constitute a whole but are capable of more when in the presence of others of their kind. If such a simple creature with no conscious species-character to speak of is capable of something like this – a 30% increase in brain size – then could it be possible in humans?

Could the presence of a large number of fellow humans have a appreciable effect on the physiology of people in terms of mental capabilities? If so, then species-being would be more then some abstract philosophical or sociological theory, it would be grounded on an observable physical phenomenon. It would give weight to the caution put forward of the continued isolationist philosophies followed today.

Unfortunately, it isn't so simple to perform the same experiment on people. Current humanist sentiments and morals wouldn't allow for people to be isolated for several generations in order to study the difference between their brains and the brains of socially integrated people. But even if we cannot prove it, it does make for a fascinating theory.

 


10/19/2013 19:37

Your blog looked so simple to design that I decided to create one, thanks!

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