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The Altruistic Brain How We Are Naturally Good

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The Altruistic Brain

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The Altruistic Brain by Donald W. Pfaff,Sandra Sherman Book Summary:

"Unlike any other study in its field, The Altruistic Brain synthesizes into one theory the most important research into how and why - by purely physical mechanisms - humans empathize with one another and respond altruistically."--Book jacket.

Commonwealth and Covenant

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Commonwealth and Covenant by Marcia Pally Book Summary:

In Commonwealth and Covenant Marcia Pally argues that in order to address current socioeconomic problems, we need not more economic formulas but rather a better understanding of how the world is set up -- an ontology of how we and the world work. Without this, good proposals that arise lack political will and go unimplemented. Pally describes our basic setup as "separability-amid-situatedness" or "distinction-amid-relation." Though we are all unique individuals, we become our singular selves through our relations and responsibilities to the people and environments around us. Pally argues that our culture's overemphasis on "separability" -- individualism run amok -- results in greed, adversarial and deceitful political discourse and chicanery, resource grabbing, broken relationships, and anomie. Maintaining that separability and situatedness can and must be considered together in public policy, Pally draws on intellectual history, philosophy, and -- especially -- historic Christian and Jewish theologies of relationality to construct a new framework for addressing present economic and political ills.


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Perspectives by William F Brown Book Summary:

From the first seconds Following the Big Bang, to our best guesses for the fate of the universe and humanity, science provides stunning new perspectives about the place of humanity in the cosmos. Humans may live on one planet in one small corner of the Milky Way, itself one of billions of other galaxies, but Earth may be unique in one respect. Earth is teaming with life, one species of which, through chance and natural selection, developed an extraordinary brain, gifted with imagination, curiosity and a compulsion to understand ourselves and the universe. Perspectives is a journey through deep time, from the creation of the universe to the beginnings of life, our human origins and later the rise of culture and religion. It explores what it means to be human, and where our technology could take us in the years and centuries to come....

Change Leadership in Emerging Markets

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Change Leadership in Emerging Markets by Caren Brenda Scheepers Book Summary:

Download or read Change Leadership in Emerging Markets book by clicking button below to visit the book download website. There are multiple format available for you to choose (Pdf, ePub, Doc).

Miracles: a Very Short Introduction

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Miracles: a Very Short Introduction by Yujin Nagasawa Book Summary:

Jesus turned water into wine, Mohammad split the moon into two, and Buddha walked and spoke immediately upon birth. According to recent statistics, even in the present age of advanced science and technology, most people believe in miracles. In fact, newspapers and television regularly report alleged miracles, such as recoveries from incurable diseases, extremely unlikely coincidences, and religious signs and messages on unexpected objects. In this book the award-winning author and philosopher Yujin Nagasawa addresses some of our most fundamental questions concerning miracles. What exactly is a miracle? What types of miracles are believed in the world's great religions? What do recent scientific findings tell us about miracles? Can we rationally believe that miracles have really taken place? Can there be acts that are more religiously significant than miracles? Drawing on a vast variety of fascinating examples from across the major religions, Nagasawa discusses the lively debate on miracles that ranges from reported miracles in ancient scriptures in the East and West to cutting-edge scientific research on belief formation. Throughout, he drives us to ask ourselves if and how we can still believe in in miracles in the twenty-first century. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.


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Neuroculture by Edmund T. Rolls Book Summary:

Why do we have emotions? What is the relationship between mind and brain? Why do we appreciate art? How do we make decisions? Why do so many people follow religions? Neuroculture considers the implications of our modern understanding of how the brain works, and how it can help us understand many mental issues central to everyday life.

Does Altruism Exist?

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Does Altruism Exist? by David Sloan Wilson Book Summary:

David Sloan Wilson, one of the world’s leading evolutionists, addresses a question that has puzzled philosophers, psychologists, and evolutionary biologists for centuries: Does altruism exist naturally among the Earth’s creatures? The key to understanding the existence of altruism, Wilson argues, is by understanding the role it plays in the social organization of groups. Groups that function like organisms indubitably exist, and organisms evolved from groups. Evolutionists largely agree on how functionally organized groups evolve, ending decades of controversy, but the resolution casts altruism in a new light: altruism exists but shouldn’t necessarily occupy center stage in our understanding of social behavior. After laying a general theoretical foundation, Wilson surveys altruism and group-level functional organization in our own species—in religion, in economics, and in the rest of everyday life. He shows that altruism is not categorically good and can have pathological consequences. Finally, he shows how a social theory that goes beyond altruism by focusing on group function can help to improve the human condition in a practical sense. Does Altruism Exist? puts old controversies to rest and will become the center of debate for decades to come.

The Selfish Gene

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The Selfish Gene by Charles Simonyi Professor of the Public Understanding of Science Richard Dawkins,Richard Dawkins,David Dawkins,RICHARD AUTOR DAWKINS Book Summary:

An ethologist shows man to be a gene machine whose world is one of savage competition and deceit

Cultivating Conscience

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Cultivating Conscience by Lynn Stout Book Summary:

Contemporary law and public policy often treat human beings as selfish creatures who respond only to punishments and rewards. Yet every day we behave unselfishly--few of us mug the elderly or steal the paper from our neighbor's yard, and many of us go out of our way to help strangers. We nevertheless overlook our own good behavior and fixate on the bad things people do and how we can stop them. In this pathbreaking book, acclaimed law and economics scholar Lynn Stout argues that this focus neglects the crucial role our better impulses could play in society. Rather than lean on the power of greed to shape laws and human behavior, Stout contends that we should rely on the force of conscience. Stout makes the compelling case that conscience is neither a rare nor quirky phenomenon, but a vital force woven into our daily lives. Drawing from social psychology, behavioral economics, and evolutionary biology, Stout demonstrates how social cues--instructions from authorities, ideas about others' selfishness and unselfishness, and beliefs about benefits to others--have a powerful role in triggering unselfish behavior. Stout illustrates how our legal system can use these social cues to craft better laws that encourage more unselfish, ethical behavior in many realms, including politics and business. Stout also shows how our current emphasis on self-interest and incentives may have contributed to the catastrophic political missteps and financial scandals of recent memory by encouraging corrupt and selfish actions, and undermining society's collective moral compass. This book proves that if we care about effective laws and civilized society, the powers of conscience are simply too important for us to ignore.

The Compassionate Instinct: The Science of Human Goodness

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The Compassionate Instinct: The Science of Human Goodness by Dacher Keltner,Jason Marsh,Jeremy Adam Smith Book Summary:

Leading scientists and science writers reflect on the life-changing, perspective-changing, new science of human goodness. In these pages you will hear from Steven Pinker, who asks, “Why is there peace?”; Robert Sapolsky, who examines violence among primates; Paul Ekman, who talks with the Dalai Lama about global compassion; Daniel Goleman, who proposes “constructive anger”; and many others. Led by renowned psychologist Dacher Keltner, the Greater Good Science Center, based at the University of California in Berkeley, has been at the forefront of the positive psychology movement, making discoveries about how and why people do good. Four times a year the center publishes its findings with essays on forgiveness, moral inspiration, and everyday ethics in Greater Good magazine. The best of these writings are collected here for the first time. A collection of personal stories and empirical research, The Compassionate Instinct will make you think not only about what it means to be happy and fulfilled but also about what it means to lead an ethical and compassionate life.

Pathological Altruism

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Pathological Altruism by Barbara Oakley Book Summary:

Pathological Altruism is a groundbreaking new book - the first to explore the negative aspects of altruism and empathy, seemingly uniformly positive traits. In fact, pathological altruism, in the form of an unhealthy focus on others to the detriment of one's own needs, may underpin some personality disorders. Hyperempathy - an excess of concern for what others think and how they feel - helps explain popular but poorly defined concepts such as codependency. The contributing authors of this book provide a scientific, social, and cultural foundation for the subject of pathological altruism, creating a new field of inquiry. Each author's approach points to one disturbing truth: what we value so much, the altruistic "good" side of human nature, can also have a dark side that we ignore at our peril.

Dominance and Aggression in Humans and Other Animals

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Dominance and Aggression in Humans and Other Animals by Henry R. Hermann Book Summary:

Dominance and Aggression in Humans and Other Animals: The Great Game of Life examines human nature and the influence of evolution, genetics, chemistry, nurture, and the sociopolitical environment as a way of understanding how and why humans behave in aggressive and dominant ways. The book walks us through aggression in other social species, compares and contrasts human behavior to other animals, and then explores specific human behaviors like bullying, abuse, territoriality murder, and war. The book examines both individual and group aggression in different environments including work, school, and the home. It explores common stressors triggering aggressive behaviors, and how individual personalities can be vulnerable to, or resistant to, these stressors. The book closes with an exploration of the cumulative impact of human aggression and dominance on the natural world. Reviews the influence of evolution, genetics, biochemistry, and nurture on aggression Explores aggression in multiple species, including insects, fish, reptiles, birds, and mammals Compares human and animal aggressive and dominant behavior Examines bullying, abuse, territoriality, murder, and war Includes nonaggressive behavior in displays of respect and tolerance Highlights aggression triggers from drugs to stress Discusses individual and group behavior, including organizations and nations Probes dominance and aggression in religion and politics Translates the impact of human behavior over time on the natural world

The Fear Factor

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The Fear Factor by Abigail Marsh Book Summary:

How the brains of psychopaths and heroes show that humans are wired to be good At fourteen, Amber could boast of killing her guinea pig, threatening to burn down her home, and seducing men in exchange for gifts. She used the tools she had available to get what she wanted, like all children. But unlike other children, she didn't care about the damage she inflicted. A few miles away, Lenny Skutnik cared so much about others that he jumped into an ice-cold river to save a drowning woman. What is responsible for the extremes of generosity and cruelty humans are capable of? By putting psychopathic children and extreme altruists in an fMRI, acclaimed psychologist Abigail Marsh found that the answer lies in how our brain responds to others' fear. While the brain's amygdala makes most of us hardwired for good, its variations can explain heroic and psychopathic behavior. A path-breaking read, The Fear Factor is essential for anyone seeking to understand the heights and depths of human nature. "A riveting ride through your own brain."--Adam Grant "You won't be able to put it down."--Daniel Gilbert, New York Times bestselling author of Stumbling on Happiness "[It] reads like a thriller... One of the most mind-opening books I have read in years." --Matthieu Ricard, Author of Altruism


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UnSelfie by Michele Borba Book Summary:

"According to Michele Borba, the woman Dr. Drew calls "the most trusted parenting expert in America," there's an empthy crisis among today's youth, who she dubs the "selfie generation." But the good news is that empathy is a skill that can -- and must -- be taught, and in UNSELFIE (her first book for a general trade audience) Borba offers a 9-step program to help parents cultivate empathy in children, from birth to young adulthood"--

The Neuroscience of Fair Play

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The Neuroscience of Fair Play by Donald W. Pfaff,Sandra J. Ackerman Book Summary:

Many scholars, using anthropology, psychology, and evolution, argue that our ethical and moral life evolved from nature. Distinguished neuroscientist Donald W. Pfaff, Ph. D., takes that proposition a critical step further, right to the basics: brain signals." "In this first book to describe how ethics maybe a hardwired function of the human brain, Pfaff explains how specific brain circuits cause us to consider an action toward another as if it were happening to us, prompting us to treat others as we wish to be treated ourselves. Pfaff presents a rock-solid hypothesis of why humans across time and geography have such similar notions of good and bad, right and wrong." -- Book jacket.

Moral Origins

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Moral Origins by Christopher Boehm Book Summary:

A noted anthropologist explains how our sense of ethics has changed over the course of human evolution. By the author of Hierarchy of the Forest.

On Human Nature

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On Human Nature by Edward O. Wilson Book Summary:

In his new preface E. O. Wilson reflects on how he came to write this book: how The Insect Societies led him to write Sociobiology, and how the political and religious uproar that engulfed that book persuaded him to write another book that would better explain the relevance of biology to the understanding of human behavior.

Between Psychology and Philosophy

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Between Psychology and Philosophy by Michael Slote Book Summary:

This open access book discusses a variety of important but unprecedented ways in which psychology can be useful to philosophy. The early chapters illustrate this theme via comparisons between Chinese and Western philosophy. It is argued that the Chinese notion of a heart-mind is superior to the Western concept of mind, but then, more even-handedly, the relative strengths and weaknesses of Chinese and Western thought overall are critically examined. In later chapters, the philosophical uses of psychology are treated more specifically in relation to major issues in Western philosophy. Michael Slote shows that empathy and emotion play a role in speech acts (like assertion and thanking) that speech act theory has totally ignored. Similarly, he treats the age-old question of whether justice pays using psychological material that has not previously been recognized. Finally, the implications of psychological egoism are discussed in terms of some new psychological and, indeed, human distinctions. Human life is pervaded by instincts and aspirations that are neither egoistic nor altruistic, and recognizing that fact can help put egoism in its place. It is less of a challenge to morality than we have realized.

Not By Genes Alone

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Not By Genes Alone by Peter J. Richerson,Robert Boyd Book Summary:

Humans are a striking anomaly in the natural world. While we are similar to other mammals in many ways, our behavior sets us apart. Our unparalleled ability to adapt has allowed us to occupy virtually every habitat on earth using an incredible variety of tools and subsistence techniques. Our societies are larger, more complex, and more cooperative than any other mammal's. In this stunning exploration of human adaptation, Peter J. Richerson and Robert Boyd argue that only a Darwinian theory of cultural evolution can explain these unique characteristics. Not by Genes Alone offers a radical interpretation of human evolution, arguing that our ecological dominance and our singular social systems stem from a psychology uniquely adapted to create complex culture. Richerson and Boyd illustrate here that culture is neither superorganic nor the handmaiden of the genes. Rather, it is essential to human adaptation, as much a part of human biology as bipedal locomotion. Drawing on work in the fields of anthropology, political science, sociology, and economics—and building their case with such fascinating examples as kayaks, corporations, clever knots, and yams that require twelve men to carry them—Richerson and Boyd convincingly demonstrate that culture and biology are inextricably linked, and they show us how to think about their interaction in a way that yields a richer understanding of human nature. In abandoning the nature-versus-nurture debate as fundamentally misconceived, Not by Genes Alone is a truly original and groundbreaking theory of the role of culture in evolution and a book to be reckoned with for generations to come. “I continue to be surprised by the number of educated people (many of them biologists) who think that offering explanations for human behavior in terms of culture somehow disproves the suggestion that human behavior can be explained in Darwinian evolutionary terms. Fortunately, we now have a book to which they may be directed for enlightenment . . . . It is a book full of good sense and the kinds of intellectual rigor and clarity of writing that we have come to expect from the Boyd/Richerson stable.”—Robin Dunbar, Nature “Not by Genes Alone is a valuable and very readable synthesis of a still embryonic but very important subject straddling the sciences and humanities.”—E. O. Wilson, Harvard University

The Origins of Virtue

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The Origins of Virtue by Matt Ridley Book Summary:

Suggests a biological basis for the social organization and cooperation shown by the human race, and traces the evolution of society

The Origins of Morality

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The Origins of Morality by Dennis Krebs Book Summary:

Why do people behave altruistically in some circumstances, but not in others? In order to account fully for morality, Dennis Krebs departs from the dominant contemporary psychological approach to morality, which suggests that children acquire morals through socialization and cultural indoctrination. Rather, social learning and cognitive-developmental accounts of morality can be subsumed and refined in an evolutionary framework. Relying on evolutionary theory, Krebs explains how notions of morality originated in the first place. He updates Darwin's early ideas about how dispositions to obey authority, to control antisocial urges, and to behave in altruistic and cooperative ways originated and evolved, then goes on to update Darwin's account of how humans acquired a moral sense.

The Righteous Mind

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The Righteous Mind by Jonathan Haidt Book Summary:

Presents a groundbreaking investigation into the origins of morality at the core of religion and politics, offering scholarly insight into the motivations behind cultural clashes that are polarizing America.

Foundations of Human Sociality

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Foundations of Human Sociality by Joseph Patrick Henrich Book Summary:

What motives underlie the ways humans interact socially? Are these the same for all societies? Are these part of our nature, or influenced by our environments? Over the last decade, research in experimental economics has emphatically falsified the textbook representation of Homo economicus. Hundreds of experiments suggest that people care not only about their own material payoffs, but also about such things as fairness, equity, and reciprocity. However, this research left fundamental questions unanswered: Are such social preferences stable components of human nature, or are they modulated by economic, social, and cultural environments? Until now, experimental research could not address this question because virtually all subjects had been university students. Combining ethnographic and experimental approaches to fill this gap, this book breaks new ground in reporting the results of a large cross-cultural study aimed at determining the sources of social (non-selfish) preferences that underlie the diversity of human sociality. In this study, the same experiments carried out with university students were performed in fifteen small-scale societies exhibiting a wide variety of social, economic, and cultural conditions. The results show that the variation in behaviour is far greater than previously thought, and that the differences between societies in market integration and the importance of cooperation explain a substantial portion of this variation, which individual-level economic and demographic variables could not. The results also trace the extent to which experimental play mirrors patterns of interaction found in everyday life. The book includes a succinct but substantive introduction to the use of game theory as an analytical tool, and to its use in the social sciences for the rigorous testing of hypotheses about fundamental aspects of social behaviour outside artificially constructed laboratories. The editors also summarize the results of the fifteencase studies in a suggestive chapter about the scope of the project.

The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Evolutionary Psychology

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The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Evolutionary Psychology by Jennifer Vonk,Todd K. Shackelford Book Summary:

This volume brings together leading experts in comparative and evolutionary psychology. Top scholars summarize the histories and possible futures of their disciplines, and the contribution of each to illuminating the evolutionary forces that give rise to unique abilities in distantly and closely related species.


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Conscience by Patricia Churchland Book Summary:

Distinguished founder of neurophilosophy Patricia S. Churchland explores why all social groups have ideals for behavior, even though ethics vary among different cultures, and even among individuals. Bringing together an understanding of the influences of nature and nurture, she looks to evolution to elucidate how our brains are configured to form bonds and to care; Churchland then turns to philosophy to understand how morality is transmitted through generations, and why it has become a central piece of all societies.

Wired for Culture

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Wired for Culture by Mark Pagel Book Summary:

Explores the concept of culture and how it influenced collective human behaviors from the beginning of evolution through modern times, and offers new insights on how art, morality, and self-interest define being human.

Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex

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Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex by Charles Darwin Book Summary:

Download or read Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex book by clicking button below to visit the book download website. There are multiple format available for you to choose (Pdf, ePub, Doc).

Is Behavioral Economics Doomed?

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Is Behavioral Economics Doomed? by David K. Levine Book Summary:

In this book, David K. Levine questions the idea that behavioral economics is the answer to economic problems. He explores the successes and failures of contemporary economics both inside and outside the laboratory, and asks whether popular behavioral theories of psychological biases are solutions to the failures. The book not only provides an overview of popular behavioral theories and their history, but also gives the reader the tools for scrutinizing them.

What Kind of World are We Leaving Our Children?

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What Kind of World are We Leaving Our Children? by Amadou Mahtar M'Bow,Unesco Book Summary:

Download or read What Kind of World are We Leaving Our Children? book by clicking button below to visit the book download website. There are multiple format available for you to choose (Pdf, ePub, Doc).

The Science of Self-Control

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The Science of Self-Control by Howard RACHLIN Book Summary:

This book proposes a new science of self-control based on the principles of behavioral psychology and economics. Claiming that insight and self-knowledge are insufficient for controlling one's behavior, Howard Rachlin argues that the only way to achieve such control--and ultimately happiness--is through the development of harmonious patterns of behavior. Most personal problems with self-control arise because people have difficulty delaying immediate gratification for a better future reward. To avoid those problems, the author presents a strategy of "soft commitment," consisting of the development of valuable patterns of behavior that bridge over individual temptations.

The Disordered Mind

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The Disordered Mind by ERIC R. KANDEL Book Summary:

Neurological and psychiatric disorders have long been regarded as fundamentally different, depending on whether they appear to affect the brain or the mind. In reality, the brain and the mind are inseparable. Both types of disorder can affect every aspect of brain function: from perception, action, memory and emotion to empathy, social interaction, attention and consciousness. It is easy to view brain disorders as simply tragic or frightening. However, studying where these functions go wrong provides a window on the workings of the healthy brain, and makes it more likely that scientists and clinicians will be able to develop effective treatments or preventative strategies. As individuals, and as a society, we are also able to better empathise with people with disorders of the mind. Building on his pioneering research, Eric R. Kandel illustrates how breakthrough studies of brain disruptions can deepen our understanding of thought, feeling, behaviour, memory and creativity, and perhaps in the future will transform medical care and lead to the development of a unified theory of mind.

Parenting Matters

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Parenting Matters by National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine,Division of Behavioral and Social Sciences and Education,Board on Children, Youth, and Families,Committee on Supporting the Parents of Young Children Book Summary:

Decades of research have demonstrated that the parent-child dyad and the environment of the familyâ€"which includes all primary caregiversâ€"are at the foundation of children's well- being and healthy development. From birth, children are learning and rely on parents and the other caregivers in their lives to protect and care for them. The impact of parents may never be greater than during the earliest years of life, when a child's brain is rapidly developing and when nearly all of her or his experiences are created and shaped by parents and the family environment. Parents help children build and refine their knowledge and skills, charting a trajectory for their health and well-being during childhood and beyond. The experience of parenting also impacts parents themselves. For instance, parenting can enrich and give focus to parents' lives; generate stress or calm; and create any number of emotions, including feelings of happiness, sadness, fulfillment, and anger. Parenting of young children today takes place in the context of significant ongoing developments. These include: a rapidly growing body of science on early childhood, increases in funding for programs and services for families, changing demographics of the U.S. population, and greater diversity of family structure. Additionally, parenting is increasingly being shaped by technology and increased access to information about parenting. Parenting Matters identifies parenting knowledge, attitudes, and practices associated with positive developmental outcomes in children ages 0-8; universal/preventive and targeted strategies used in a variety of settings that have been effective with parents of young children and that support the identified knowledge, attitudes, and practices; and barriers to and facilitators for parents' use of practices that lead to healthy child outcomes as well as their participation in effective programs and services. This report makes recommendations directed at an array of stakeholders, for promoting the wide-scale adoption of effective programs and services for parents and on areas that warrant further research to inform policy and practice. It is meant to serve as a roadmap for the future of parenting policy, research, and practice in the United States.

"Emotional Amoral Egoism"

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"Emotional Amoral Egoism" by Nayef R. F. Al-Rodhan Book Summary:

The enduring assumption that human behaviour is governed by innate morality and reason is at odds with the persistence of human deprivation, injustice, brutality, inequality and conflict. This book offers a fresh look at human nature and universal security by proposing a new general theory of human nature, "emotional amoral egoism", and a specific theory of human motivation that draw on a wide range of philosophical, psychological and evolutionary approaches as well as neuroscientific research. It argues that human behaviour is governed primarily by emotional self-interest and that the human mind is a predisposed tabula rasa. The author argues that most human beings are innately neither moral nor immoral but rather amoral. Circumstances will determine the survival value of humankind's moral compass. This insight has profound implications for the re-ordering of governance mechanisms at all levels with a strong emphasis on the role of society and the global system. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the substrates of human nature and its universal security implications in relation to identity, conflict, ethnocentrism, xenophobia, morality and global governance.

Enhancing Human Capacities

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Enhancing Human Capacities by Julian Savulescu,Ruud ter Meulen,Guy Kahane Book Summary:

Enhancing Human Capacities is the first to review the very latest scientific developments in human enhancement. It is unique in its examination of the ethical and policy implications of these technologies from a broad range of perspectives. Presents a rich range of perspectives on enhancement from world leading ethicists and scientists from Europe and North America The most comprehensive volume yet on the science and ethics of human enhancement Unique in providing a detailed overview of current and expected scientific advances in this area Discusses both general conceptual and ethical issues and concrete questions of policy Includes sections covering all major forms of enhancement: cognitive, affective, physical, and life extension

Man the Hunted

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Man the Hunted by Donna Hart Book Summary:

Man the Hunted argues that primates, including the earliest members of the human family, have evolved as the prey of any number of predators, including wild cats and dogs, hyenas, snakes, crocodiles, and even birds. The authors' studies of predators on monkeys and apes are supplemented here with the observations of naturalists in the field and revealing interpretations of the fossil record. Eyewitness accounts of the 'man the hunted' drama being played out even now give vivid evidence of its prehistoric significance. This provocative view of human evolution suggests that countless adaptations that have allowed our species to survive (from larger brains to speech), stem from a considerably more vulnerable position on the food chain than we might like to imagine. The myth of early humans as fearless hunters dominating the earth obscures our origins as just one of many species that had to be cautious, depend on other group members, communicate danger, and come to terms with being merely one cog in the complex cycle of life.

Man and Woman

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Man and Woman by Donald W. Pfaff Book Summary:

Genes and environment interact inside and outside the brain to produce hormonal and neuroanatomical and neurochemical differences between men and women. These factors dictate small differences in ability and large sex differences in feelings, in pain and in suffering.

The Ape that Understood the Universe

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The Ape that Understood the Universe by Steve Stewart-Williams Book Summary:

The Ape that Understood the Universe is the story of the strangest animal in the world: the human animal. It opens with a question: How would an alien scientist view our species? What would it make of our sex differences, our sexual behavior, our altruistic tendencies, and our culture? The book tackles these issues by drawing on two major schools of thought: evolutionary psychology and cultural evolutionary theory. The guiding assumption is that humans are animals, and that like all animals, we evolved to pass on our genes. At some point, however, we also evolved the capacity for culture - and from that moment, culture began evolving in its own right. This transformed us from a mere ape into an ape capable of reshaping the planet, travelling to other worlds, and understanding the vast universe of which we're but a tiny, fleeting fragment. Featuring a new foreword by Michael Shermer.

Cold-blooded Kindness

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Cold-blooded Kindness by Barbara A. Oakley Book Summary:

Are some people predisposed to kindness to the point of being destructive to themselves and others? In this searing exploration of deadly codependency, the author of the best-selling Evil Genes, takes the reader on a spellbinding voyage of discovery.

On Human Nature

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On Human Nature by Michel Tibayrenc,Francisco J. Ayala Book Summary:

On Human Nature: Biology, Psychology, Ethics, Politics, and Religion covers the present state of knowledge on human diversity and its adaptative significance through a broad and eclectic selection of representative chapters. This transdisciplinary work brings together specialists from various fields who rarely interact, including geneticists, evolutionists, physicians, ethologists, psychoanalysts, anthropologists, sociologists, theologians, historians, linguists, and philosophers. Genomic diversity is covered in several chapters dealing with biology, including the differences in men and apes and the genetic diversity of mankind. Top specialists, known for their open mind and broad knowledge have been carefully selected to cover each topic. The book is therefore at the crossroads between biology and human sciences, going beyond classical science in the Popperian sense. The book is accessible not only to specialists, but also to students, professors, and the educated public. Glossaries of specialized terms and general public references help nonspecialists understand complex notions, with contributions avoiding technical jargon. Provides greater understanding of diversity and population structure and history, with crucial foundational knowledge needed to conduct research in a variety of fields, such as genetics and disease Includes three robust sections on biological, psychological, and ethical aspects, with cross-fertilization and reciprocal references between the three sections Contains contributions by leading experts in their respective fields working under the guidance of internationally recognized and highly respected editors