The Better Angels of Our Nature

Why Violence Has Declined
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin Group USA
ISBN: 0143122010
Category: Psychology
Page: 802
View: 6936

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Presents a controversial history of violence which argues that today's world is the most peaceful time in human existence, drawing on psychological insights into intrinsic values that are causing people to condemn violence as an acceptable measure.

The Better Angels of Our Nature

Why Violence Has Declined
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101544643
Category: Psychology
Page: 832
View: 4313

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“If I could give each of you a graduation present, it would be this—the most inspiring book I've ever read." —Bill Gates (May, 2017) Selected by The New York Times Book Review as a Notable Book of the Year The author of Enlightenment Now and The New York Times bestseller The Stuff of Thought offers a controversial history of violence. Faced with the ceaseless stream of news about war, crime, and terrorism, one could easily think we live in the most violent age ever seen. Yet as New York Times bestselling author Steven Pinker shows in this startling and engaging new work, just the opposite is true: violence has been diminishing for millenia and we may be living in the most peaceful time in our species's existence. For most of history, war, slavery, infanticide, child abuse, assassinations, programs, gruesom punishments, deadly quarrels, and genocide were ordinary features of life. But today, Pinker shows (with the help of more than a hundred graphs and maps) all these forms of violence have dwindled and are widely condemned. How has this happened? This groundbreaking book continues Pinker's exploration of the esesnce of human nature, mixing psychology and history to provide a remarkable picture of an increasingly nonviolent world. The key, he explains, is to understand our intrinsic motives--the inner demons that incline us toward violence and the better angels that steer us away--and how changing circumstances have allowed our better angels to prevail. Exploding fatalist myths about humankind's inherent violence and the curse of modernity, this ambitious and provocative book is sure to be hotly debated in living rooms and the Pentagon alike, and will challenge and change the way we think about our society.

The Better Angels of Our Nature

Why Violence Has Declined
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0143122010
Category: Psychology
Page: 802
View: 2730

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Presents a controversial history of violence which argues that today's world is the most peaceful time in human existence, drawing on psychological insights into intrinsic values that are causing people to condemn violence as an acceptable measure.

The Better Angels of Our Nature

The Decline of Violence In History And Its Causes
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin UK
ISBN: 0141959746
Category: History
Page: 1056
View: 7625

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'The most inspiring book I've ever read' Bill Gates, 2017 'A brilliant, mind-altering book ... Everyone should read this astonishing book' Guardian 'Will change the way you see the world' Daily Mail Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2012 Wasn't the twentieth century the most violent in history? In his extraordinary, epic book Steven Pinker shows us that this is wrong, telling the story of humanity in a completely new and unfamiliar way. From why cities make us safer to how books bring about peace, Pinker weaves together history, philosophy and science to examine why we are less likely to die at another's hand than ever before, how it happened and what it tells us about our very natures. 'May prove to be one of the great books of our time ... he writes like an angel' Economist 'Masterly, a supremely important book ... For anyone interested in human nature, it is engrossing' The New York Times 'Marvellous ... riveting and myth-destroying' New Statesman 'A marvellous synthesis of science, history and storytelling, written in Pinker's distinctively entertaining and clear personal style ... I was astonished by the extent to which violence has declined in every shape, form and scale' Financial Times 'An outstandingly fruitful read, with fascinating nuggets on almost every page' Sunday Times, Books of the Year

The Better Angels of Our Nature

A History of Violence and Humanity
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: N.A
ISBN: 9780141034645
Category: Violence
Page: 1026
View: 1717

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Believe it or not, today we may be living in the most peaceful time in out species' history. In this epic exploration of the human condition, Steven Pinker shows that, despite the constant stream of news about war, crime and terrorism, violence of all kinds has been decreasing. Barbaric practices such as human sacrifice, torture-executions and chattel slavery have been abolished; rates of death from war and homicide are dramatically down; and brutality towards minorities, women, children and animals is in steady decline. Weaving together psychology and history, science and popular culture, The Better Angles of Our Nature reinvigorates the ideals of modernity, progress and enlightenment. 'His book will change the way you see the world . . . Pinker's powerful ideas, vivid stories and sparkling prose make this hard to put down.' Daily Mail 'May prove to be one of the great books of our time . . . he writes like an angel.' Economist 'Masterly, a supremely important book . . . For anyone interested in human nature, it is engrossing.' The New York Times 'Marvellous . . . riveting and myth-destroying.' New Statesman 'A marvellous synthesis of science, history and storytelling, written in Pinker's distinctively entertaining and clear personal style . . . I was astonished by the extent to which violence has declined in every shape, form and scale.' Financial Times 'An outstanding fruitful read, with fascinating nuggets on almost every page.' Sunday Times, Book of the Year

The Stuff of Thought

Language as a Window into Human Nature
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781101202609
Category: Psychology
Page: 512
View: 7607

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This New York Times bestseller is an exciting and fearless investigation of language from the author of Better Angels of Our Nature and The Sense of Style and Enlightenment Now. "Curious, inventive, fearless, naughty." --The New York Times Book Review Bestselling author Steven Pinker possesses that rare combination of scientific aptitude and verbal eloquence that enables him to provide lucid explanations of deep and powerful ideas. His previous books - including the Pulitzer Prize finalist The Blank Slate - have catapulted him into the limelight as one of today's most important popular science writers. In The Stuff of Thought, Pinker presents a fascinating look at how our words explain our nature. Considering scientific questions with examples from everyday life, The Stuff of Thought is a brilliantly crafted and highly readable work that will appeal to fans of everything from The Selfish Gene and Blink to Eats, Shoots & Leaves.

Enlightenment Now

The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 0525427570
Category: Psychology
Page: 556
View: 7749

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An assessment of the human condition in the twenty-first century presents data demonstrating that life quality, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise throughout the world because of the Enlightenment ideal of using reason and science.

Big Ideas in Social Science


Author: David Edmonds,Nigel Warburton
Publisher: SAGE
ISBN: 1473933498
Category: Social Science
Page: 184
View: 5335

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Are human beings less violent than before? Why do we adopt certain moral and political judgements? Why is the gap between rich and poor getting bigger? How do we decide which criminal policies are effective? What is the Population Challenge for the 21st Century? What is social science? In Big Ideas in Social Science, David Edmonds and Nigel Warburton put these and more of our society’s burning questions to 18 of the world’s leading social scientists including Steven Pinker, Ann Oakley, Lawrence Sherman, Kate Pickett, Robert J. Shiller and Doreen Massey. The result is a collection of thought-provoking discussions that span the fields of sociology, politics, economics, criminology, geography and many more.From the people who brought us the Philosophy Bites series, Big Ideas in Social Science is a fascinating and accessible introduction to the key ideas and findings of the social sciences. The interviews for this book are based on a series of podcasts, Social Science Bites, sponsored by SAGE. Social Science Bites was inspired by the popular Philosophy Bites podcast (www.philosophybites.com), which was founded by David and Nigel in 2007 and has so far had 26 million downloads. Philosophy Bites has spawned three books, Philosophy Bites, Philosophy Bites Back and Philosophy Bites Again.

Becoming Evil

How Ordinary People Commit Genocide and Mass Killing
Author: James Waller
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0195314565
Category: Psychology
Page: 351
View: 8371

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Political or social groups wanting to commit mass murder on the basis of racial, ethnic or religious differences are never hindered by a lack of willing executioners. Social psychologist James Waller uncovers the internal and external factors which lead ordinary people to commit these acts of evil.

The Sense of Style

The Thinking Person's Guide to Writing in the 21st Century
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin Books
ISBN: 0143127799
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Page: 368
View: 3372

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"Charming and erudite . . . The wit and insight and clarity he brings . . . is what makes this book such a gem." --Time.com Why is so much writing so bad, and how can we make it better? Is the English language being corrupted by texting and social media? Do the kids today even care about good writing--and why should we care? In this entertaining and eminently practical book, the cognitive scientist, dictionary consultant, and New York Times-bestselling author Steven Pinker rethinks the usage guide for the twenty-first century. Using examples of great and gruesome modern prose while avoiding the scolding tone and Spartan tastes of the classic manuals, he shows how the art of writing can be a form of pleasurable mastery and a fascinating intellectual topic in its own right. The Sense of Style is for writers of all kinds, and for readers who are interested in letters and literature and are curious about the ways in which the sciences of mind can illuminate how language works at its best.

The Better Angels of Our Nature


Author: Joulia Smortchkova
Publisher: CRC Press
ISBN: 1351351176
Category:
Page: N.A
View: 326

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Reasoning is the critical thinking skill concerned with the production of arguments: making them coherent, consistent, and well-supported; and responding to opposing positions where necessary. The Better Angels of Our Nature offers a step-by-step class in precisely these skills. Author Steven Pinker's central thesis is simple: mankind has become increasingly less violent over the centuries, and will continue to do so. Pinker is aware, though, that many people instinctively believe the opposite, and Better Angels is devoted to marshalling data to support and illustrate this central argument, as well as a series of secondary arguments about how and why humanity has become less violent. Pinker's interpretative skills - understanding the meaning of the complex evidence from history - are also on display throughout, as he tackles the ambiguities of his data, the problems it presents, and the viable inferences one can draw from it.

The Blank Slate

The Modern Denial of Human Nature
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 9781101200322
Category: Psychology
Page: 528
View: 4564

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A brilliant inquiry into the origins of human nature. "Sweeping, erudite, sharply argued, and fun to read..also highly persuasive." -Time Now updated with a new afterword One of the world's leading experts on language and the mind explores the idea of human nature and its moral, emotional, and political colorings. With characteristic wit, lucidity, and insight, Pinker argues that the dogma that the mind has no innate traits-a doctrine held by many intellectuals during the past century-denies our common humanity and our individual preferences, replaces objective analyses of social problems with feel-good slogans, and distorts our understanding of politics, violence, parenting, and the arts. Injecting calm and rationality into debates that are notorious for ax-grinding and mud-slinging, Pinker shows the importance of an honest acknowledgment of human nature based on science and common sense.

Winning the War on War

The Decline of Armed Conflict Worldwide
Author: Joshua S. Goldstein
Publisher: Penguin
ISBN: 1101549084
Category: Political Science
Page: 400
View: 1272

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Everyone knows: wars are getting worse, more civilians are dying, and peacemaking achieves nothing, right? Wrong. Despite all the bad-news headlines, peacekeeping is working. Fewer wars are starting, more are ending, and those that remain are smaller and more localized. But peace doesn’t just happen; it needs to be put into effect. Moreover, understanding the global decline in armed conflict is crucial as America shifts to an era of lower military budgets and operations. Preeminent scholar of international relations, Joshua Goldstein, definitively illustrates how decades of effort by humanitarian aid agencies, popular movements—and especially the United Nations—have made a measureable difference in reducing violence in our times. Goldstein shows how we can continue building on these inspiring achievements to keep winning the war on war. This updated and revised edition includes more information on a post-9-11 world, and is a perfect compendium for those wishing to learn more about the United States’ armed conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan.

Do Humankind's Best Days Lie Ahead


Author: Steven Pinker,Matt Ridley,Alain de Botton,Malcolm Gladwell
Publisher: Oneworld Publications
ISBN: 1786070774
Category: Political Science
Page: 128
View: 4161

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Four of the world’s most renowned thinkers take on one of the biggest debates of the modern era. “It’s just a brute fact that we don't throw virgins into volcanoes any more. We don't execute people for shoplifting a cabbage. And we used to.” - Steven Pinker “The idea that because things have gotten better in the past they will continue to do so in the future is a fallacy I would have thought confined to the lower reaches of Wall Street.” - Malcolm Gladwell

Royal Blunders


Author: Geoffrey Regan
Publisher: Andre Deutsch Limited
ISBN: 9780233050447
Category: Humor
Page: 188
View: 6333

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It is not just the modern-day royals that are the butt of quips and jokes about their personality and behaviour. Royalty have never had it easy or made it easy for themselves, as historian Geoffrey Regan sets out to prove in this hilarious collection of stories. From the emperors of Rome to the princes of the present-day House of Windsor, those of royal blood have not always behaved with dignity fitting of their regal standing. In Geoffrey Regan's Book of Royal Blunders, the bestselling author of the Naval Blunders and Military Blunders casts a jaundiced eye over the lapses, gaffes and indiscretions of kings, queen and kaisers. Discover which Hapsburg emperor retired to a monastery for a quiet life and ended up eating himself to death. Learn which of Edward VII's sons was suspected of being Jack the Ripper. Read about the medieval French monarch who was utterly convinced that he was made of glass and the prince who confessed his marital infidelity on television. Geoffrey Regan's Book of Royal Blunders presents a colourful and varied collection of princely cameos.From calamitous coronations and bizarre baptisms to farcical funerals, from grand occasions mismanaged to marriages mishandled, the author lays bare the turbulent public and private lives of monarchs as diverse as Ludwig II of Bavaria and Edward VIII.

Language, Cognition, and Human Nature


Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199328749
Category: Computers
Page: 378
View: 3164

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Pinker's seminal research explores the workings of language and its connections to cognition, perception, social relationships, child development, human evolution, and theories of human nature. This eclectic collection spans Pinker's thirty-year career, exploring his favorite themes in greater depth and scientific detail. It includes thirteen of Pinker's classic articles, ranging over topics such as language development in children, mental imagery, the recognition of shapes, the computational architecture of the mind, the meaning and uses of verbs, the evolution of language and cognition, the nature-nurture debate, and the logic of innuendo and euphemism. Each outlines a major theory or takes up an argument with another prominent scholar, such as Stephen Jay Gould, Noam Chomsky, or Richard Dawkins.

War Before Civilization


Author: Lawrence H. Keeley
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 9780199761531
Category: Social Science
Page: 272
View: 6064

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The myth of the peace-loving "noble savage" is persistent and pernicious. Indeed, for the last fifty years, most popular and scholarly works have agreed that prehistoric warfare was rare, harmless, unimportant, and, like smallpox, a disease of civilized societies alone. Prehistoric warfare, according to this view, was little more than a ritualized game, where casualties were limited and the effects of aggression relatively mild. Lawrence Keeley's groundbreaking War Before Civilization offers a devastating rebuttal to such comfortable myths and debunks the notion that warfare was introduced to primitive societies through contact with civilization (an idea he denounces as "the pacification of the past"). Building on much fascinating archeological and historical research and offering an astute comparison of warfare in civilized and prehistoric societies, from modern European states to the Plains Indians of North America, War Before Civilization convincingly demonstrates that prehistoric warfare was in fact more deadly, more frequent, and more ruthless than modern war. To support this point, Keeley provides a wide-ranging look at warfare and brutality in the prehistoric world. He reveals, for instance, that prehistorical tactics favoring raids and ambushes, as opposed to formal battles, often yielded a high death-rate; that adult males falling into the hands of their enemies were almost universally killed; and that surprise raids seldom spared even women and children. Keeley cites evidence of ancient massacres in many areas of the world, including the discovery in South Dakota of a prehistoric mass grave containing the remains of over 500 scalped and mutilated men, women, and children (a slaughter that took place a century and a half before the arrival of Columbus). In addition, Keeley surveys the prevalence of looting, destruction, and trophy-taking in all kinds of warfare and again finds little moral distinction between ancient warriors and civilized armies. Finally, and perhaps most controversially, he examines the evidence of cannibalism among some preliterate peoples. Keeley is a seasoned writer and his book is packed with vivid, eye-opening details (for instance, that the homicide rate of prehistoric Illinois villagers may have exceeded that of the modern United States by some 70 times). But he also goes beyond grisly facts to address the larger moral and philosophical issues raised by his work. What are the causes of war? Are human beings inherently violent? How can we ensure peace in our own time? Challenging some of our most dearly held beliefs, Keeley's conclusions are bound to stir controversy.

Words and Rules

The Ingredients Of Language
Author: Steven Pinker
Publisher: Basic Books
ISBN: 0465049710
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines
Page: 384
View: 4822

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"If you are not already a Steven Pinker addict, this book will make you one." --Jared Diamond In Words and Rules, Steven Pinker explores profound mysteries of language by picking a deceptively simple phenomenon--regular and irregular verbs--and examining it from every angle. With humor and verve, he covers an astonishing array of topics in the sciences and humanities, from the history of languages to how to simulate languages on computers to major ideas in the history of Western philosophy. Through it all, Pinker presents a single, powerful idea: that language comprises a mental dictionary of memorized words and a mental grammar of creative rules. The idea extends beyond language and offers insight into the very nature of the human mind. This is a sparkling, eye-opening, and utterly original book by one of the world's leading cognitive scientists.

The Progress Paradox

How Life Gets Better While People Feel Worse
Author: Gregg Easterbrook
Publisher: Random House Incorporated
ISBN: 0812973038
Category: Political Science
Page: 376
View: 8322

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In an illuminating study of the state of the world, the author of The Here and Now explores the question of societal progress to explain why, despite strong evidence that the quality of life has improved dramatically, many people refuse to believe it, discussing the new science of positive psychology, the fad for victimhood, fears engendered by 9/11, and other important topics. Reprint. 25,000 first printing.

Fooled by Randomness

The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets
Author: Nassim Nicholas Taleb
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 9781588367679
Category: Business & Economics
Page: 368
View: 7605

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Fooled by Randomness is a standalone book in Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s landmark Incerto series, an investigation of opacity, luck, uncertainty, probability, human error, risk, and decision-making in a world we don’t understand. The other books in the series are The Black Swan, Antifragile, and The Bed of Procrustes. “[Taleb is] Wall Street’s principal dissident. . . . [Fooled By Randomness] is to conventional Wall Street wisdom approximately what Martin Luther’s ninety-nine theses were to the Catholic Church.” –Malcolm Gladwell, The New Yorker Finally in paperback, the word-of-mouth sensation that will change the way you think about the markets and the world.This book is about luck: more precisely how we perceive luck in our personal and professional experiences. Set against the backdrop of the most conspicuous forum in which luck is mistaken for skill–the world of business–Fooled by Randomness is an irreverent, iconoclastic, eye-opening, and endlessly entertaining exploration of one of the least understood forces in all of our lives. From the Trade Paperback edition.