Polarization in the Post-Truth World from the evolutionary perspective

FISP(국제철학회연맹) in Seoul

Global Problems and Philosophy

host: KPA / organized by FISP CD, KU, CNU Institute of Humanities and ISCU -
19. May 2022, Konkuk University (Seoul) (at KU conference hall)

Polarization in the Post-Truth World - from the evolutionary perspective

Choi Jongduck (Independent Scholar)


Desire directed human nature and morality directed human nature are the products of the two-track process of human evolution. This premise is the starting point for my thesis. There is no debate to think of desire as human nature, but it is highly controversial to see moral behavior as human nature.

Traditional normative ethicists attribute the human desire to the realm of nature and morality to the realm of culture. Still, I attribute morality to the realm of human nature because even human morality is a result of adaptation by natural selection.

If you think my basic premise to be unsatisfactory, you might regard human desire as a kind of selfish behavioral trait and morality as a kind of cooperative behavioral trait. I suppose human nature has evolved a dual track of selfish and cooperative behavioral characteristics. If someone asks you, “Are you a selfish or cooperative style person?” you could ignore their asking. Or you might answer confidently, “I am selfish and cooperative.

argumentation 1: two-track of human nature and its dynamism

Being dynamic that is being exposed as a constant push and pull between selfish behavior-trait and cooperative behavior-trait is a feature of human nature.

Human nature is not immutable and fixed but changes and fluctuates according to circumstances because dynamism itself is nature. In other words, Which way of two-track you will ride on might differ depending on the circumstances.

A human being is not a two-track as a noun subject but a conflict itself that pushes and pulls as a verb due to my evolutionary premise. That means human nature is a verb-type 'becoming' escaped from a fixed 'being'.

From the view of Deleuze, the verb-type becoming corresponds to the 'multiplicity' from which 'oneness' is eliminated.

argumentation 2: psychological homeostasis and social durability

The dynamic structure between individual behavioral traits supports society's collective behavior-pattern dynamic structure and vice versa.

An individual's moral dynamism appears as psychological homeostasis in a human being.

Psychological homeostasis means that although conflicts between selfishness and cooperation exist in us humans, we maintain an exquisite balance of conflicts.

In a society, the dynamism of a group (or state) appears as social durability. In this sustainable community, conflict dynamics become an internal driving force that maintains the equilibrium in conflict as a whole while experiencing partial conflict.

argumentation 3: collapse of equilibrium

Unfortunately, we, especially Koreans and Americans, are facing a moment when the equilibrium of conflict is gradually breaking down.

As a geographic division, racial discrimination, wealth gap, chauvinism, and macho power spread, the community's immunity that maintains psychological homeostasis and social continuity is being collapsed.

Immune-deficient social diseases induce symptoms such as exclusion, disgust, and bullying.

In other words, as the social conflict balance is disrupted, the individual's psychological homeostasis is reduced.

Conversely, atrophy of psychological homeostasis
(i)lowers each individual's shame,
(ii)makes them act confidently in lies and further spreads self-deception,
(iii)divides sides and extremes of bias. It reveals the nature of selfish behavior. Eventually, a vicious cycle arises in which the social conflict equilibrium is more threatened.

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