Death of Ernst Haeckel Whose Work on Evolution Inspired Racist Theories of Nazis Hot

Death of Ernst Haeckel Whose Work on Evolution Inspired Racist Theories of Nazis

Ernst Haeckel, 1905

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History of Science

Ernst Haeckel dies in Jena, Germany. Haeckel was an influential zoologist whose work on evolution served to inspire some of the racist theories of the Nazis.

He rejected Darwinian biology and instead believed that physical characteristics — including racial characteristics — are acquired by an organism interacting with the environment.

This is a form of Lamarckism, an evolutionary theory developed by Jean-Baptiste Lamarck which will be refuted.

Ernst Haeckel originally trained as a physician, but abandoned medicine after reading Charles Darwin's Origin of Species in 1859. Then he studied zoology and anatomy, earning a position as professor in Jena.

He developed what he called his "biogenic law," made famous by his phrase "ontogeny recapitulates phylogeny." According to this alleged law, every creature develops through the forms of their early evolution while in the fetal stage.

It will be demonstrated that such a one-to-one correspondence does not really occur, but it will also be demonstrated that there is a relationship between ontogeny (development of a fertilized ovum through to maturity) and phylogeny (development of a species over time).


Haeckel's Bogus Embryo Drawings

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