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Classical ConstructionsPapers in Memory of Don Fowler, Classicist and Epicurean$
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S. J. Heyworth

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780199218035

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199218035.001.0001

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Bicycles, Centaurs, and Man-faced Ox-creatures: Ontological Instability in Lucretius

Bicycles, Centaurs, and Man-faced Ox-creatures: Ontological Instability in Lucretius

Chapter:
(p.39) 3 Bicycles, Centaurs, and Man-faced Ox-creatures: Ontological Instability in Lucretius
Source:
Classical Constructions
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Gordon Campbell (Contributor Webpage)

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199218035.003.0003

The publication of Darwin’s On the Origin of Species in 1859 led to considerable psychological insecurity for many people over the place of humanity in the ‘scale’ of nature, and over our relationship to other creatures and to God. This chapter focuses on some links between ancient and modern expressions of such worries. It argues that the Epicurean theory of the origin of species may come closer to modern evolutionary theories than we have realized, and may quite naturally share many of the problems that modern evolutionary theories face.

Keywords:   humanity, nature, creatures, origin of species, Epicurean theory, evolutionary theory

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