Biography of Herbert Spencer (1820-1903)

Herbert Spencer.

British philosopher, born in Derby in 1820 and died on December 8, 1903, was the most prominent figure of philosophical evolutionism. He studied scientific character, and came into contact with evolutionary ideas, reading the principles of geology of ch. Lyell. In 1859, he published his first work of importance, social statics, where to apply evolutionary principles to social life. A year earlier it had applied the same principles to the psychic and spiritual life (principles of Psychology). From 1858 he worked in its system of synthetic philosophy, which materialized in the following works: first principles (1862), principles of biology (two vols., 1864-67), principles of Sociology (three vols., 1876-96), principles of ethics (five vols., 1879-92). He also wrote: education (1861), the classification of the Sciences (1864), the important individual trial and State (1884) and his autobiography (posthumous, 1904).

Despite the lack of shows when it comes to expose his theories, Spencer is enthusiastically received by the atmosphere inside in the second half of the 19th century. Beware of all the truths acquired by other means which is not that of the positive Sciences. Human reason is incapable of knowing the absolute, so that man has to comply with know the palpable. The acquisition of knowledge and truths are carried out through the inheritance of generations and generations. However, there is a unifying law that allows us to know to be in its evolution: evolution. With this conception of progress as evolution, which rests on the alteration of homogeneous, of the quantitatively unchangeable, which turns but does not disappear, Spencer comes to Darwin and other evolutionists, while he focuses on the evolutionism in the ethical and social dimensions of man.