"I vividly remember one Saturday morning in April 1988 – an entirely ordinary one for Manchester at that time of year, with grey skies and a little rain – when, on my way to catch a bus, it suddenly dawned on me that the organism and the person could be one and the same. Instead of trying to reconstruct the complete human being from two separate but complementary components, respectively biophysical and sociocultural, held together with a film of psychological cement, it struck me that we should be trying to find a way of talking about human life that eliminates the need to slice it up into these different layers. Everything I have written since has been driven by this agenda."
— Tim Ingold, The Perception of the Environment
"Indeed, over recent years, selectionists have run an extraordinarily successful and well-funded public relations exercise, backed up by all the scholarly paraphernalia of academic conferences, edited volumes, specialist journals and lengthy lists of references in which they all cite one another. Dissenting voices, however, have been comprehensively suppressed. Far from remaining indifferent to all of this, it leaves me feeling viscerally angry. Indeed I have often been taken aback by the strength of my own reaction, and I have wondered about the reasons for it. Part of the problem, perhaps, lies in the sheer hubris with which selectionists advance their claims. Not for them the ramblings of woolly-minded humanists when Darwin and hard science point the way! Why bother to read or engage with the work of generations of social and cultural theorists when it is perfectly obvious that human beings are hard-wired meme-replicating machines? All this stuff about agency and structure, about how persons come into being within fields of social relationships, about culture as process rather than transferable content, is so much froth. Humanists can only deal in proximate realities; neo-Darwinian human science reveals the ultimate causes of things."
— Tim Ingold, “The Poverty of Selectionism”, Anthropology Today 16.3 (2000)