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Why do we do the things we do? Over a decade in the making, this game-changing book is Robert Sapolsky's genre-shattering attempt to answer that question as fully as perhaps only he could, looking at it from every angle. Sapolsky's storytelling concept is delightful but it also has a powerful intrinsic logic: he starts by looking at the factors that bear on a person's reaction in the precise moment a behavior occurs, and then hops back in time from there, in stages, ultimately ending up at the deep history of our species and its genetic inheritance. And so the first category of explanation is the neurobiological one. What goes on in a person's brain a second before the behavior happens? Then he pulls out to a slightly larger field of vision, a little earlier in time: What sight, sound, or smell triggers the nervous system to produce that behavior? And then, what hormones act hours to days earlier to change how responsive that individual is to the stimuli which trigger the nervous system? By now, he has increased our field of vision so that we are thinking about neurobiology and the sensory world of our environment and endocrinology in trying to explain what happened. Sapolsky keeps going--next to what features of the environment affected that person's brain, and then back to the childhood of the individual, and then to their genetic makeup. Finally, he expands the view to encompass factors larger than that one individual. How culture has shaped that individual's group, what ecological factors helped shape that culture, and on and on, back to evolutionary factors thousands and even millions of years old. The result is one of the most dazzling tours de horizon of the science of human behavior ever attempted, a majestic synthesis that harvests cutting-edge research across a range of disciplines to provide a subtle and nuanced perspective on why we ultimately do the things we do...for good and for ill. Sapolsky builds on this understanding to wrestle with some of our deepest and thorniest questions relating to tribalism and xenophobia, hierarchy and competition, morality and free will, and war and peace. Wise, humane, often very funny, Behave is a towering achievement, powerfully humanizing, and downright heroic in its own right.
The critical narrative of this interdisciplinary book offers a first-time look at the interrelationship between biology, mythology and philosophy in human development. Its daring premise follows the trajectory of human thought, starting with the biological roots of fear and the original need for religion, truth-seeking, and myth-making. The narrative then innovatively links a number of maverick philosophical teachings over the centuries, from pre-Buddhist times to the Buddha, from Epicurus and Pyrrho to Lucretius, and eventually to the seminal poetry of Omar Khayyam. These emergent philosophies exemplified liberation from the grasp of mythical and religious thinking and instead espoused an empirical and joyful mind. The narrative concludes with a look at the emancipating philosophical movement that resulted in the European Enlightenment, and it suggests that the philosophical teachings explored in the book may offer the potential for a second, broader Enlightenment.
Leadership is not just for CEOs--we all find ourselves in leadership positions at one time or another, whether in meetings and classes or at social events and family gatherings. And yet, even though leadership is the single most studied aspect of all human behavior, there remains a scarcity of qualified leaders to step into critical positions. This deficit is laid bare in the gulf between what leaders are trained to do and how they actually act. In What You Don't Know About Leadership, but Probably Should, Jeffrey A. Kottler translates the latest research, theory, and skills into practical strategies for everyday and professional situations. He presents the wisdom and successful strategies of an array of renowned leaders--from Steve Jobs to Franklin Delano Roosevelt, George Lucas to Admiral Horatio Nelson--while citing the challenges they faced and lessons they learned in their respective roles. The book focuses on key attributes such as self-confidence, flexibility, charisma, and humility, while noting the serious pitfalls associated with traits such as hubris, immodesty, and narcissism. Kottler's writing is candid and realistic; though there are no easy rules or programs that instantly lead to success, there are steps you can take to make a difference in others' lives, better manage conflict and stress, and ultimately serve as an effective leader.
This book examines the organizational workplace with its hierarchies of authority and finds it at odds with our sociobiological "human" heritage. The authors offer insightful analyses of workplace situations and detail what approaches and circumstances are consistent with human status regardless of organizational role.
Analyzes the contemporary social, economic, and political problems of the United States and suggests radical changes in government policy and the Constitution in order to solve them
Contains eight critical essays, along with extracts from critical material by such authors as James Joyce, Victor Hugo, and Sigmund Freud.
"The editors of this book have brought together a collection of first-rate essays that display the range and fecundity of contemporary theory."--Ralph Flores, Philosophy and Literature.

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