Holmes Rolston

Published Articles

With living things, questions of level mingle with questions of identity, which mingle with questions of persisting and perishing.
What possibility spaces are needed to get from beginnings to where we have now arrived, in Earth history?
It is not that there is no "watchmaker"; there is no "watch." Looking for one frames the problem the wrong way.
The system of inheritance of ideas is independent of the system of inheritance of genes. All this is pointing steadily to a difference in being human, to a complex mind indeed adapted for culture, that is, to a distinctive human genius.
he fundamental claim is that selfish persons out reproduce unselfish ones, but superimposed on that there is the claim that (really) selfish persons who are self-deceived into thinking they are unselfish out reproduce selfish persons who know their own selfishness.
Since genes are not moral agents, they cannot be selfish, and, equally, they cannot be altruistic. But genes can transmit information.
Each organism is in pursuit of—that is, values—its own proper life, which is all that the (nonhuman) individual organism either can or ought to pursue. It turns out, however, that values can be held intrinsically only as they are inclusively distributed.

Holmes Rolston, III, is University Distinguished Professor and Professor of Philosophy Emeritus at Colorado State University.

Recent books are: Genes, Genesis and GodScience and Religion: A Critical Survey (20th anniversary new edition in 2006); Philosophy Gone Wild, Environmental Ethics; and Conserving Natural Value.   He has written chapters in eighty books and over one hundred professional articles.   His books have been used as texts in three hundred colleges and universities at home and abroad.  He was recently Visiting Distinguished Professor at Yale University.  His articles have been anthologized over one hundred times.  His work has been translated into fifteen foreign languages.

Rolston was laureate for the 203 Templeton Prize in Religion, the award presented by Prince Philip in Buckingham Palace.  He was awarded the Mendel Mendal by Villanova University in 2005.  He gave the Gifford Lectures, University of Edinburgh, 1997-1998, has lectured on seven continents, and is featured in Joy A. Palmer, Fifty Key Thinkers on the Environment.

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