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Hardwired for Peace

The Big Idea for Saturday, February 18, 2012

Why do we kill each other?

Malthusians make the argument that war is a product of too many humans fighting over too few resources. Evolutionary psychologists offer a different explanation, which is very well summarized in Ron Rosenbaum's new book, How the End Begins: The Road to a Nuclear World War III, as such:

"There is a dark self-destructive strain in human nature, perhaps a now-maladaptive residue of what originally was an evolutionarily valuable aggressiveness."

In his new book, The End of War, John Horgan disposes of both of these arguments, demonstrating that humans became lethal through culture, not biology, a claim that is also affirmed by the work of political theorist Francis Fukuyama in his recent book The Origins of Political Order




  1. 1 The End of War
    Daniel Honan Re-Envision
  2. 2 How We Stopped Evolving and Learned to Love War
    Mark Cheney Think Tank
  3. 3 Steven Pinker on Reason and the Decline of Violence
    Will Wilkinson The Moral Sciences Club
  4. 4 Why We Kill
    Richard Wrangham

Hardwired for Peace

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