The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation

The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation

by Matt Ridley

Paperback

$14.83 $16.00 Save 7% Current price is $14.83, Original price is $16. You Save 7%.
View All Available Formats & Editions
Eligible for FREE SHIPPING
  • Want it by Thursday, October 18?   Order by 12:00 PM Eastern and choose Expedited Shipping at checkout.
    Same Day shipping in Manhattan. 
    See Details

Overview

The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation by Matt Ridley

If, as Darwin suggests, evolution relentlessly encourages the survival of the fittest, why are humans compelled to live in cooperative, complex societies? In this fascinating examination of the roots of human trust and virtue, a zoologist and former American editor of the Economist reveals the results of recent studies that suggest that self-interest and mutual aid are not at all incompatible. In fact, he points out, our cooperative instincts may have evolved as part of mankind?s natural selfish behavior--by exchanging favors we can benefit ourselves as well as others.Brilliantly orchestrating the newest findings of geneticists, psychologists, and anthropologists, The Origins of Virtue re-examines the everyday assumptions upon which we base our actions towards others, whether in our roles as parents, siblings, or trade partners. With the wit and brilliance of The Red Queen, his acclaimed study of human and animal sexuality, Matt Ridley shows us how breakthroughs in computer programming, microbiology, and economics have given us a new perspective on how and why we relate to each other.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780140264456
Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date: 04/28/1998
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 630,055
Product dimensions: 5.07(w) x 7.71(h) x 0.65(d)
Age Range: 18 Years

About the Author

Matt Ridley has worked as a science editor, Washington correspondent, and American editor for the Economist. A research fellow of the Institute for Economic Affairs and a Trustee of the International Centre for Life, he lives in Northumberland, England.

Table of Contents

The Origins of Virtue Acknowledgments
Prologue
Chapter One: The Society of Genes
Chapter Two: The Division of Labour
Chapter Three: The Prisoner's Dilemma
Chapter Four: Telling Hawks from Doves
Chapter Five: Duty and the Feast
Chapter Six: Public Goods and Private Gifts
Chapter Seven: Theories of Moral Sentiments
Chapter Eight: The Tribal Primates
Chapter Nine: The Source of War
Chapter Ten: The Gains from Trade
Chapter Eleven: Ecology as Religion
Chapter Twelve: The Power of Property
Chapter Thirteen: Trust
Sources and Notes
Index

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Guest More than 1 year ago
I read this book in a communication theory class. I have a background in biology and chemistry, so I feel like I had a bit of an advantage. However, this book is a good way for people who aren't intrigued by science to perhaps spark a new interest. Ridley's theories are ingenius and this book is great when read by a group. You will definately want to talk with others about the concepts presented in this book. I have taken so much insight from this book--from my understanding of the way humans operate in a group to my understanding of my own personal relationships. After reading this book, one finds it hard to justify tipping a waitress in a restaurant that one will never visit again. Read the book and you'll see what I mean!