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The Distinction Between Innate and Acquired Characteristics

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[Revised entry by Paul Griffiths and Stefan Linquist on November 29, 2021. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] The idea that some characteristics of an organism are explained by its intrinsic nature, whilst others reflect the influence of the environment is an ancient one. It has even been argued that this distinction is itself part of the evolved psychology of the human species. The distinction played an important role in the history of philosophy as the locus of the dispute between Rationalism and Empiricism discussed in another entry...

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News source: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

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