The fatal flaw with metaphysical vitalism was that it invariably led to circular reasoning.
“Scholars have wasted their time trying to exonerate Darwin of responsibility for Social Darwinism, for he was a Social Darwinist.”
Darwin thought everything evolved from a simple cell by mindless chance processes. The animals don’t know that.
The men who translated Marxism into practical political terms in the form of Soviet terror were evolutionary thinkers.
I enjoyed Wilson’s book, and I learned a lot from it. But this biography’s most interesting feature is its firm rejection of Darwin’s theory of evolution.