Selfishness and Cooperation: Challenge for Social Life

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Cooperation is a great challenge for natural selection. Some scholars assume that cooperation could not evolve within the framework of natural selection. It is undeniable that natural selection, at least at the individual level, favors selfishness and defectors. Nonetheless, this selfish tendency does not necessarily imply that cooperation could not evolve by means of natural selection. In this paper, we specifically acknowledge certain basic challenges for the evolution of the human ability to cooperate at the level of large groups. In this paper, we discuss topics like the human ability for “supercooperation,” the importance of repetition and reputation, and Multilevel Selection Theory as the basic mechanisms of evolution of cooperation.

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