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   Derogatory term for the theory of evolution
   This article is about the term. For the field/s of study, see
   Evolutionary_biology S: Subfields.

   Evolutionism is a term used (often derogatorily) to denote the theory
   of evolution. Its exact meaning has changed over time as the study of
   evolution has progressed. In the 19th century, it was used to describe
   the belief that organisms deliberately improved themselves through
   progressive inherited change (orthogenesis).^[1]^[2] The teleological
   belief went on to include cultural evolution and social evolution.^[1]
   In the 1970s the term Neo-Evolutionism was used to describe the idea
   "that human beings sought to preserve a familiar style of life unless
   change was forced on them by factors that were beyond their

   The term is most often used by creationists to describe adherence to
   the scientific consensus on evolution as equivalent to a secular
   religion.^[4]^[5] The term is very seldom used within the scientific
   community, since the scientific position on evolution is accepted by
   the overwhelming majority of scientists.^[6] Because evolutionary
   biology is the default scientific position, it is assumed that
   "scientists" or "biologists" are "evolutionists" unless specifically
   noted otherwise.^[7] In the creation-evolution controversy,
   creationists often call those who accept the validity of the modern
   evolutionary synthesis "evolutionists" and the theory itself
   [ ]


     * 1 19th-century teleological use
     * 2 Modern use by creationists
     * 3 See also
     * 4 Notes
     * 5 References

19th-century teleological use[edit]

   Before its use to describe biological evolution, the term "evolution"
   was originally used to refer to any orderly sequence of events with the
   outcome somehow contained at the start.^[8] The first five editions of
   Darwin's in Origin of Species used the word "evolved", but the word
   "evolution" was only used in its sixth edition in 1872.^[9] By then,
   Herbert Spencer had developed the concept theory that organisms strive
   to evolve due to an internal "driving force" (orthogenesis) in
   1862.^[8] Edward B. Tylor and Lewis H Morgan brought the term
   "evolution" to anthropology though they tended toward the older
   pre-Spencerian definition helping to form the concept of unilineal
   (social) evolution used during the later part of what Trigger calls the
   Antiquarianism-Imperial Synthesis period (c1770-c1900).^[10] The term
   evolutionism subsequently came to be used for the now discredited
   theory that evolution contained a deliberate component, rather than the
   selection of beneficial traits from random variation by differential

Modern use by creationists[edit]

   The term evolution is widely used, but the term evolutionism is not
   used in the scientific community to refer to evolutionary biology as it
   is redundant and anachronistic.^[7]

   However, the term has been used by creationists in discussing the
   creation-evolution controversy.^[7] For example, the Institute for
   Creation Research, in order to imply placement of evolution in the
   category of 'religions', including atheism, fascism, humanism and
   occultism, commonly uses the words evolutionism and evolutionist to
   describe the consensus of mainstream science and the scientists
   subscribing to it, thus implying through language that the issue is a
   matter of religious belief.^[4] The BioLogos Foundation, an
   organization that promotes the idea of theistic evolution, uses the
   term "evolutionism" to describe "the atheistic worldview that so often
   accompanies the acceptance of biological evolution in public
   discourse." It views this as a subset of scientism.^[11]^[non-primary
   source needed]

See also[edit]

     * Alternatives to evolution by natural selection
     * Darwinism
     * Evolution as fact and theory
     * Evidence of common descent
     * Social Darwinism


    1. ^ ^a ^b Allen, R. T.; Allen, Robert W. (1994). Chambers
       encyclopedic English dictionary. Edinburgh: Chambers. p. 438.
       ISBN 978-0-550-11000-8. "a widely held 19c belief that organisms
       were intrinsically bound to improve themselves, that changes were
       progressive, and that acquired characters could be transmitted
       genetically. The belief was also extended to cultures and
       societies, and to living organisms."
    2. ^ Carneiro, Robert, L. (2003). Evolutionism in cultural
       anthropology : a critical history. Cambridge, MA: Westview Press.
       pp. 2-3. ISBN 978-0-8133-3766-1.
    3. ^ Trigger, Bruce (1986) A History of Archeological Thought
       Cambridge University Press pg 290
    4. ^ ^a ^b Linke, Steven (August 28, 1992). "A Visit to the ICR
       Museum". TalkOrigins Archive. Retrieved 2008-12-05. "In fact, true
       science supports the Biblical worldview... However, science does
       not support false religions (e.g. atheism, evolutionism, pantheism,
       humanism, etc.)"
    5. ^ Ruse, Michael (March 2003). "Perceptions in science: Is Evolution
       a Secular Religion? -- Ruse". Science: 299 (5612): 1523. Retrieved
       2008-12-05. "A major complaint of the Creationists, those who are
       committed to a Genesis-based story of origins, is that
       evolution--and Darwinism in particular--is more than just a
       scientific theory. They object that too often evolution operates as
       a kind of secular religion, pushing norms and proposals for proper
       (or, in their opinion, improper) action."
    6. ^ "Nearly all scientists (97%) say humans and other living things
       have evolved over time", Public Praises Science; Scientists Fault
       Public, Media Archived 2009-11-08 at the Wayback Machine, Pew
       Research Center, 9 July 2009
    7. ^ ^a ^b ^c Gough, J. B. (1983). "The Supposed Dichotomy between
       Creationism and Evolution". National Center for Science Education.
       Retrieved 2009-09-24. "...to say a person is a scientist
       encompasses the fact that he or she is an evolutionist."
    8. ^ ^a ^b Carneiro, Robert L.(Leonard) (2003) Evolutionism in
       cultural anthropology: a critical history Westview Press pg 1-3
    9. ^ Darwin, Charles (1986). Burrow, JW (ed.). The Origin of Species
       (reprint of 1st ed.). Harmondsworth, Middlesex, England: Penguin
       Classics. p. 460. ISBN 978-0-14-043205-3. "...from so simple a
       beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have
       been, and are being, evolved (italics not in original)"
   10. ^ Trigger, Bruce (1986) A History of Archaeological Thought
       Cambridge University Press pg 102
   11. ^ "How is BioLogos different from Evolutionism, Intelligent Design,
       and Creationism". The BioLogos Foundation. Retrieved 2012-01-19.
       "While BioLogos accepts evolution, it emphatically rejects
       evolutionism, the atheistic worldview that so often accompanies the
       acceptance of biological evolution in public discourse. Proponents
       of evolutionism believe every aspect of life will one day be
       explained with evolutionary theory. In this way it is a subset of
       scientism, the broader view that the only real truth is that which
       can be discovered by science. These positions are commonly held by
       materialists (also called philosophical naturalists) who deny the
       existence of the supernatural."


     * Carneiro, Robert, Evolutionism in Cultural Anthropology: A Critical

   ISBN 0-8133-3766-6

     Korotayev, Andrey (2004). World Religions and Social Evolution of the
   Old World Oikumene Civilizations: A Cross-cultural Perspective
   (First ed.). Lewiston, New York: Edwin Mellen Press.
   ISBN 978-0-7734-6310-3. (on the applicability of this notion to the
   study of social evolution)

     Review of Buckland's Bridgewater Treatise, The Times Tuesday,
   November 15, 1836; pg. 3; Issue 16261; col E. ("annihilates the
   doctrine of spontaneous and progressive evolution of life, and its
   impious corollary, chance")

     Review of Charles Darwin's The Expression of the Emotions in Man and
   Animals The Times Friday, December 13, 1872; pg. 4; Issue 27559; col A.
   ("His [Darwin's] thorough-going 'evolutionism' tends to eliminate...")

     Ruse, Michael. 2003. Is Evolution a Secular Religion? Science
   299:1523-1524 (concluding that evolutionary biology is not a religion
   in any sense but noting that several evolutionary biologists, such as
   Edward O. Wilson, in their roles as citizens concerned about getting
   the public to deal with reality, have made statements like "evolution
   is a myth that is now ready to take over Christianity").

     Singh, Manvir (2011). The Evolutionist's Doodlebook. New Jersey: Fuss
   Klas Publishing. ISBN 978-0-9832930-0-2.

     Trigger, Bruce (2006). A History of Archaeological Thought.
   Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. ISBN 978-0-521-84076-7.

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