Are You Human, or What?

Overview

Are You Human, Or What? Evolutionary psychology for teens. We have evolved from reptile to mammal to human. Can we mutate, evolve into humans? Teen guide to the new science of evolutionary psychology. Evolution has equipped us, not for happiness, but for survival and reproduction of the species. To survive, we are programmed for fear and pain: every one of us had ancestors who managed to survive, mate, and pass on the best adapted programs for staying alive. Our brain programs hardware and software, have already ...
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Nicklaus, Carol 2008 Trade paperback Illustrated. New. No dust jacket as issued. Trade paperback (US). Glued binding. 143 p. Contains: Illustrations. Audience: ... Children/juvenile. Book is New! Read more Show Less

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Overview

Are You Human, Or What? Evolutionary psychology for teens. We have evolved from reptile to mammal to human. Can we mutate, evolve into humans? Teen guide to the new science of evolutionary psychology. Evolution has equipped us, not for happiness, but for survival and reproduction of the species. To survive, we are programmed for fear and pain: every one of us had ancestors who managed to survive, mate, and pass on the best adapted programs for staying alive. Our brain programs hardware and software, have already conquered every other species: we’ve won, we can stop fighting. It’s time to pay attention to our psychological welfare as well as our technology.
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Editorial Reviews

VOYA - Susan Allen
Carlson examines the new science of evolutionary psychology, explaining the psychology of early man as it relates to human action today. The objective is to show how "we can evolve further into human creatures who actually take and give joy in our lives." The author sees "the way evolution has programmed our minds so far causes psychological fear and pain and so we hurt other people." Readers are asked why they allow it, and why not have a psychological revolution? Evolutionary aspects of the fear system, aggression and anger, evil, sex, lust, and human bonding are discussed, as well as how aspects of each emotion might be changed to result in more humane behavior. The chapter "Biology is Not Destiny" describes the bonding nature of humans. The parallel is drawn that people who do not "get high on others" will often use drugs and alcohol to compensate for what they are missing from people. Although valid at a certain level, it seems a gross simplification of such addictions. The objective of the book, to make teens recognize the source of their emotions and that they can control and even change them, is admirable. The tone can be preachy, and the information given on topics of self-awareness, drug use, and emotional problems is so brief and cursory as to trivialize complex topics. Teens would enjoy the cartoon illustrations and would undoubtedly read the sections on sex but perhaps not be inspired to start a psychological revolution. Reviewer: Susan Allen
School Library Journal

Gr 7 Up

Carlson describes "how we evolved into the human animals we are and how we can evolve further into humane creatures." She explains that unhappiness and anxieties are the result of actions caused by fears, which have evolved from Stone Age reptilian brains. Humans tend to view themselves as individuals, separate from the rest of the species and life on Earth, instead of connected. However, humans have the ability to reprogram their thinking. Humanity will be responsible for its own next psychological evolutionary step by the choices it makes. The book is organized into small chapters, focusing on the brain as it relates to teen issues such as loneliness, aggression, and sex. Despite the glossary, some scientific terms are undefined and are used frequently enough to make for dense reading. While connections are made to teen issues, the material is unlikely to generate interest in young adults, and there isn't enough information for reports. Dale Carlson's The Teen Brain Book (Bick, 2004) is a more teen-friendly read.-Richelle Roth, Wilmington Public Library, OH

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781884158339
  • Publisher: Bick Publishing House
  • Publication date: 7/15/2008
  • Pages: 143
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Author of over sixty books, adult and juvenile, fiction and nonfiction, Hannah Carlson has received three ALA Notable Book Awards, the Christopher Award, the Foreword Book of the Year Award, YALSA Nomination Quick Picks for Young Adults, New York Public Library Best Books for Teens, VOYA Honor Book. She writes novels and psychology, science, and philosophy books for young adults, and adult wildlife care and meditation books. She teaches writing here and abroad during part of each year. She makes her home among her grandchildren Chaney, Jacquelyn, Malcolm, Sam, and Shannon in Connecticut. Her books have been translated into 11 languages.

 

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Table of Contents


Introduction: Mutation and Evolutionary Psychology
Can Teenagers Survive by Mutating?     1
The Rabbit, Chameleon, Gazelle, and Tiger in Your Fear System     15
How Much Human in Your Fear?     26
Animal Anger and Aggression Are Evolutionary: Humans Are Something Else     39
Anger and Evil     45
Sex, Lust, and All That     54
Teen Sex, Human Sex: Love and Lust     56
Bonding: or How Humans Get high on Other People     63
Biology Isn't Destiny     68
It's the Chase We Love!     72
Curiosity, Interest, Desire, Pleasure, Joy, Happiness     75
Loneliness, Anxiety, Grief, Terror: Separation Distress and the Panic System     78
Despair, Depression, Disorders in the Human Social Brain     82
Play: Are You Smiling or Baring Your Teeth?     89
Are We Having Fun Yet?     95
The Miracle of Consciousness     100
Consciousness, Self, and Self-Consciousness     104
Universal Consciousness and Beyond     108
Intelligent Life     114
Bibliography and Suggested Reading
Brain Science Web Sites with Links
Glossary of Science Terms
Index
Journal Pages
Ordering Information
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