> Skip to content
  • Published: 3 October 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141959740
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
Categories:

The Better Angels of Our Nature

The Decline of Violence In History And Its Causes




This radical reassessment of human progress will become the most famous book Steven Pinker has written - everyone needs to read it

-Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2012

This riveting, myth-destroying book reveals how, contrary to popular belief, humankind has become progressively less violent, over millenia and decades. Can violence really have declined? The images of conflict we see daily on our screens from around the world suggest this is an almost obscene claim to be making. Extraordinarily, however, Steven Pinker shows violence within and between societies - both murder and warfare - really has declined from prehistory to today. We are much less likely to die at someone else's hands than ever before. Even the horrific carnage of the last century, when compared to the dangers of pre-state societies, is part of this trend.

Debunking both the idea of the 'noble savage' and an over-simplistic Hobbesian notion of a 'nasty, brutish and short' life, Steven Pinker argues that modernity and its cultural institutions are actually making us better people. He ranges over everything from art to religion, international trade to individual table manners, and shows how life has changed across the centuries and around the world - not simply through the huge benefits of organized government, but also because of the extraordinary power of progressive ideas. Why has this come about? And what does it tell us about ourselves? It takes one of the world's greatest psychologists to have the ambition and the breadth of understanding to appreciate and explain this story, to show us our very natures.

  • Published: 3 October 2011
  • ISBN: 9780141959740
  • Imprint: Penguin eBooks
  • Format: EBook
Categories:

About the author

Steven Pinker

Steven Pinker is one of the world's leading authorities on language and the mind. His popular and highly praised books include Words and Rules, How the Mind Works, and The Language Instinct. The recipient of several major awards for his teaching and scientific research, Pinker is Peter de Florez professor of psychology in the department of brain and cognitive sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

http://stevenpinker.com

Also by Steven Pinker

See all

Related titles