The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior
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Unto Others by Elliott Sober
Book DescriptionNo matter what we do, however kind or generous our deeds may seen, a hidden motive of selfishness lurks - or so science has claimed for years. This book tells readers differently. The authors demonstrate that unselfish behaviour is in fact an important feature of both biological and human nature. Their book provides a panoramic view of altruism throughout the animal kingdom - from self-sacrificing parasites to insects that subsume in the superorganism of a colony to the human capacity for selflessness - even as it explains the evolutionary sense of such behaviour. Explaining how altruistic behaviour can evolve by natural selection, this book gives credence to the idea of group selection that was originally proposed by Darwin but denounced as heretical in the 1960s. It takes an evolutionary approach in explaining the ultimate psychological motives behind unselfish human behaviour. Developing a theory of the proximate mechanisms that most likely evolved to motivate adaptive helping behaviour, the authors show how people and perhaps other species evolved the capacity to care for others as a goal in itself.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780674930476
(235mm x 155mm x 27mm)
Imprint: Harvard University Press
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Publish Date: 8-Sep-1999
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Elliott Sober
Ockham's Razors, Hardback (July 2015)
This book uses philosophy, science and probability to analyse why simpler theories are better than theories that are more complex.
Did Darwin Write the Origin Backwards?, Paperback (December 2010)
Collects philosophical essays on Darwin. This title raises such questions as: Did Charles Darwin reject the idea that group selection causes characteristics to evolve that are good for the group but bad for the individual? How does Darwin's discussion of God square with the common view of him as the champion of methodological naturalism?
Evidence and Evolution, Paperback (March 2008)View all books by Elliott Sober
Elliott Sober explores how the concept of evidence applies to creationism, natural selection and common ancestry.
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Author Biography - Elliott Sober
Elliott Sober is Vilas Research Professor and Hans Reichenbach Professor of Philosophy at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. David Sloan Wilson is Professor of Biology at State University of New York at Binghamton.
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