The Brighter Side of Human Nature: Altruism and Empathy in Everyday Life

The Brighter Side of Human Nature: Altruism and Empathy in Everyday Life

by Alfie Kohn
     
 

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"Drawing from hundreds of studies in half a dozen fields, The Brighter Side of Human Nature makes a powerful case that caring and generosity are just as natural as selfishness and aggression. This live"See more details below

Overview

"Drawing from hundreds of studies in half a dozen fields, The Brighter Side of Human Nature makes a powerful case that caring and generosity are just as natural as selfishness and aggression. This live"

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
``There is a widespread belief that our darker side is more pervasive, more persistent, and somehow more real than our other facets,'' writes Kohn ( No Contest: The Case Against Competition ), before going on to argue vehemently that human life isn't the nasty, brutish thing it's been cracked up to be since the days of Thomas Hobbes. The author builds his pro-people case in a well-reasoned manner. Starting from the premise that the power of ``nature'' is nowadays given undue weight over that of ``nurture,'' he contends that character can indeed be influenced for the better. Kohn explores the concepts of empathy and altruism, pointing out that humans are the only animals who can choose to look at the world from another being's perspective, and he also discusses the thornier issues of violence and aggression. The book concludes by detailing a morality of caring that precludes Western emphasis on competition and rugged individualism. This is a subtle, many-layered effort, making a succession of provocative, well-considered points. Kohn's style is academic and often dense, but persevering readers will be rewarded. (May)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780465007585
Publisher:
Basic Books
Publication date:
04/01/1992
Pages:
416
Sales rank:
1,002,859
Product dimensions:
6.24(w) x 9.08(h) x 1.09(d)

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