0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.
Amazon.com ReviewMichael Ghiglieri studies the roots of male violence from a unique vantage: he's a former combat soldier and longtime primate researcher, a protégé of Jane Goodall. In The Dark Side of Man: Tracing the Origins of Violence, Ghiglieri uses this background, accompanied by copious scientific and statistical evidence, to construct an explanation of male violence that is often at odds with popular preconceptions.Central to Ghiglieri's argument is that violence is a deeply entrenched behavioral strategy--especially among males--that simply emerges when other strategies fail, a thesis he reinforces convincingly with both anecdotes and hard numbers. And while he recognizes that culture and socialization play important roles in encouraging violence, he maintains that ignoring the powerful biological and evolutionary forces at work is "the single most useless--and dangerous--approach one could take in trying to explain human violence."With extensive sections on rape, murder, war, and genocide, Ghiglieri methodically details our grim heritage, from wilding New Yorkers to wild gorillas. Some of his conclusions are surprising but persuasive--that the goal of rape is actually copulation, not control, for instance. But Ghiglieri's assessment is ultimately a hopeful one: he believes that by understanding and admitting to the biological origins of violence, we are better prepared to deal with it. --Paul Hughes
Amazon.com ReviewAn accessible introduction to the science of evolutionary psychology and how it explains many aspects of human nature. Unlike many books on the topic,which focus on abstractions like kin selection, this book focuses on Darwinian explanations of why we are the way we are--emotionally and morally. Wright deals particularly well with explaining the reasons for the stereotypical dynamics of the three big "S's:" sex, siblings, and society.