Origins of Virtue (Penguin Press Science)

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9780140244045: Origins of Virtue (Penguin Press Science)

Why are people nice to each other? What are the reasons for altrusim? Matt Ridley explains how the human mind has evolved a special instinct for social exchange, offering a lucid and persuasive argument about the paradox of human benevolence.

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Human life, scientific journalist Matt Ridley suggests, is a complex balancing act: we behave with self-interest foremost in mind, but also in ways that do not harm, and sometimes even benefit, others. This behavior, in a strange way, makes us good. It also makes us unique in the animal world, where self-interest is far more pronounced. "The essential virtuousness of human beings is proved not by parallels in the animal kingdom, but by the very lack of convincing animal parallels," Ridley writes. How we got to be so virtuous over millions of years of evolution is the theme of this entertaining book of popular science, which will be of interest to any student of human nature.

About the Author:

MATT RIDLEY is a research fellow of the Institute of Economic Affairs and a Trustee of the International Centre for Life, living in Northumberland. His last book, The Red Queen, was short-listed for the Rhone-Poulenc Prize for science books and the Writers' Guild Award for non-fiction.

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Book Description Penguin. Book Condition: New. 1997. New Ed. Paperback. Why are people nice to each other? What are the reasons for altruism? This book explains how the human mind has evolved a special instinct for social exchange, offering a lucid and persuasive argument about the paradox of human benevolence. Num Pages: 304 pages, 13 b&w line drawings. BIC Classification: JF; JMA; PSAN. Category: (G) General (US: Trade). Dimension: 197 x 129 x 18. Weight in Grams: 228. . . . . . Books ship from the US and Ireland. Bookseller Inventory # V9780140244045

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