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Ever affable, ever curious New York Times columnist David Brooks (Bobos in Paradise) has been pursuing the study of human nature for decades. The fruition of this study, at least for the present, is The Social Animal, an extraordinarily accessible look at what we now know about how the human mind works. As Brooks notes, recent breakthrough brain research has provided unprecedented breakthroughs about the human brain, especially about its dominant unconscious function. To elucidate these discoveries, Brooks conjures up Harold and Erica, a "composite couple" who develop over time in ways that our ancestors could scarcely understand. A most approachable approach to root human nature.