Survival of the Fittest. Where does that saying come from? It should seem familiar to you, because it is one of the greater scientific discoveries that has been made. It's one majorly reoccurring leitmotif, so it must mean something! Survival of the fittest is a phrase a man named Charles Darwin came up with when he was studying species on the Galapagos Islands. This saying basically means that whoever can adapt to their surroundings will live longer than those who cant. In The Call of the Wild by Jack London, we are reminded many times of how we (as a species) need to adapt to survive.
In the first chapter of this book, Buck is dognapped from the comfort of Judge Millers house by a man he trusts, and is thrown into the Yukon, a land of brutal dogs, savage men and laws of its own. Many would not be able to get by in these juxtaposing places, but Buck is able to. Buck has to learn to change himself so he can survive in this new world. This change is called adaption. Buck transformed himself by copying and imitating what the other dogs did in the wilderness. (Except for Curly.) Buck learns to watch what others are doing, and more importantly, by watching others he discovers that he has become imaginative, making him ultimately fit for the harsh environment in Londons eyes.
When London writes the seventh chapter of the book, we begin to realize that Darwinism plays in more than we might have realized without this part. For instance, if John thorton hadnt stayed and dug the gold mine in the river, he wouldn't have died. By listening to his greed, he caused himself to become less fit for the environment that he was in, the wilderness, in Londons eyes. Also, if Buck had remained in the Sunland, he would not have passed on his genetic traits, for there were no suitable mates available to him. At the end of The Call of the Wild London wrote that ...the years were not many when the Yeehat Indian tribe discovered a difference in timber wolves; he wrote that ...some were seen with splashes of brown on head and muzzle, and with a rift of white centered down the chest. Now unless another dog came into the picture without us knowing, Buck has had kids, children who will inherit from Buck all the experience, fitness and knowledge of their ancestors, which is how species as a whole become adapted, by inheritance.
In one of the most timeless movies of all time, The Planet of the Apes, there are a few examples of how survival needs the fittest. Towards the beginning of the movie, the astronaut woman dies, showing she wasnt fit to fly around for a kajallion years. Then, two of the men die because they werent fit to compete with the apes. Then we as the viewers realize that it wasnt humans that were meant to be the dominant beasts, so the fitter species took over. The Apes. Then, as our protagonists are riding along the shoreline, we see one of The Statues of Liberties. This indicates that our civilization (from the past...or is it present day...the future?) (whatever. Time travel makes my brain hurt.) fought a nuclear war that practically destroyed our civilizations. In trying to better our countries, we destroyed our species, making us unfit to be the dominant species and opening a door for the apes.
Natural Selection is overall what makes us who we are, today. Its our ancestry, our instincts, everything about us comes from it. We constantly need it to improve ourselves as a whole. Survival of the Fittest is a good theory because it proves that we are always trying to better ourselves, so instead of just lying around on the couch watching T. V. all day, go. Learn. Do something to better yourself. If we as man kind are going to attempt to get anywhere, then we need to become fit. Its not about here and now, its about bettering our legacies by bettering ourselves.