Demonic Males

Apes and the Origins of Human Violence

Author: Richard W. Wrangham,Dale Peterson

Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN: 9780395877432

Category: Nature

Page: 350

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Draws on recent discoveries about human evolution to examine whether violence among men is a product of their primitive heritage, and searches for solutions to the problems of war, rape, and murder
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Eating Apes

Author: Dale Peterson

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520243323

Category: History

Page: 320

View: 4119

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Details how, with the unprecedented opening of African forests by European and Asian logging companies, the traditional consumption of wild animal meat in Central Africa has suddenly exploded in scope and impact, moving from what was recently a subsistence activity to an enormous and completely unsustainable commercial enterprise. Although the three African great apes account for only about one percent of the commercial bush meat trade, today's rate of slaughter could bring about their extinction in the next few decades. Eating Apes documents the when, where, how, and why of this rapidly accelerating disaster. In bringing the facts of this crisis and these impending extinctions into a single, accessible book, Peterson takes us one step closer to averting one of the most disturbing threats to our closest relatives.--From publisher description.
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The Ghosts of Gombe

A True Story of Love and Death in an African Wilderness

Author: Dale Peterson

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520297717

Category: History

Page: 240

View: 9480

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"This book, written by the author of the "definitive" biography of primatologist Jane Goodall, presents in sweeping detail the story of a group of young volunteers and students doing animal behavior research on chimpanzees, baboons, and red colobus monkeys at Dr. Goodall's research site in Tanzania's Gombe Stream National Park during the late 1960s. Goodall, who began her work in the summer of 1960, was originally sponsored by the great paleontologist Louis Leakey and funded by the National Geographic Society. Her early studies of chimpanzees soon made her world famous as one of the great pioneers in primatology, and she began working to transform her original tented camp into a major field station for animal studies. Then came a tragic event that marked the final summer of that promising first decade and is the focus of this book. At aroundnoon, on Saturday, July 12, 1969, Ruth Davis, a young American working at Gombe as a volunteer, walked out of camp to follow a chimpanzee into the forest and never returned. Her body was found six days later floating in a pool at the base of a high waterfall. The Ghosts of Gombe explores the social tensions that developed among the small community of researchers during 1968 and 1969; considers thoroughly how the death might have happened; and describes the painful personal consequences for some of the surviving researchers."--Provided by publisher.
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Evolution and the Emergent Self

The Rise of Complexity and Behavioral Versatility in Nature

Author: Raymond L. Neubauer

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231521685

Category: Science

Page: 320

View: 9013

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Evolution and the Emergent Self is an eloquent and evocative new synthesis that explores how the human species emerged from the cosmic dust. Lucidly presenting ideas about the rise of complexity in our genetic, neuronal, ecological, and ultimately cosmological settings, the author takes readers on a provocative tour of modern science's quest to understand our place in nature and in our universe. Readers fascinated with "Big History" and drawn to examine big ideas will be challenged and enthralled by Raymond L. Neubauer's ambitious narrative. How did humans emerge from the cosmos and the pre-biotic Earth, and what mechanisms of biological, chemical, and physical sciences drove this increasingly complex process? Neubauer presents a view of nature that describes the rising complexity of life in terms of increasing information content, first in genes and then in brains. The evolution of the nervous system expanded the capacity of organisms to store information, making learning possible. In key chapters, the author portrays four species with high brain:body ratios—chimpanzees, elephants, ravens, and dolphins—showing how each species shares with humans the capacity for complex communication, elaborate social relationships, flexible behavior, tool use, and powers of abstraction. A large brain can have a hierarchical arrangement of circuits that facilitates higher levels of abstraction. Neubauer describes this constellation of qualities as an emergent self, arguing that self-awareness is nascent in several species besides humans and that potential human characteristics are embedded in the evolutionary process and have emerged repeatedly in a variety of lineages on our planet. He ultimately demonstrates that human culture is not a unique offshoot of a language-specialized primate, but an analogue of fundamental mechanisms that organisms have used since the beginning of life on Earth to gather and process information in order to buffer themselves from fluctuations in the environment. Neubauer also views these developments in a cosmic setting, detailing open thermodynamic systems that grow more complex as the energy flowing through them increases. Similar processes of increasing complexity can be found in the "self-organizing" structures of both living and nonliving forms. Recent evidence from astronomy indicates that planet formation may be nearly as frequent as star formation. Since life makes use of the elements commonly seeded into space by burning and expiring stars, it is reasonable to speculate that the evolution of life and intelligence that happened on our planet may be found across the universe.
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Sex and World Peace

Author: Valerie M. Hudson,Bonnie Ballif-Spanvill,Mary Caprioli,Chad F. Emmett

Publisher: Columbia University Press

ISBN: 0231520093

Category: Political Science

Page: 256

View: 7166

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Sex and World Peace unsettles a variety of assumptions in political and security discourse, demonstrating that the security of women is a vital factor in the security of the state and its incidence of conflict and war. The authors compare micro-level gender violence and macro-level state peacefulness in global settings, supporting their findings with detailed analyses and color maps. Harnessing an immense amount of data, they call attention to discrepancies between national laws protecting women and the enforcement of those laws, and they note the adverse effects on state security of abnormal sex ratios favoring males, the practice of polygamy, and inequitable realities in family law, among other gendered aggressions. The authors find that the treatment of women informs human interaction at all levels of society. Their research challenges conventional definitions of security and democracy and shows that the treatment of gender, played out on the world stage, informs the true clash of civilizations. In terms of resolving these injustices, the authors examine top-down and bottom-up approaches to healing wounds of violence against women, as well as ways to rectify inequalities in family law and the lack of parity in decision-making councils. Emphasizing the importance of an R2PW, or state responsibility to protect women, they mount a solid campaign against women's systemic insecurity, which effectively unravels the security of all.
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Edinburgh Companion to the History of Democracy

Author: Benjamin Isakhan

Publisher: Edinburgh University Press

ISBN: 0748653686

Category: History

Page: 384

View: 320

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Re-examines the long and complex history of democracy and broadens the traditional view of this history by complementing it with examples from unexplored or under-examined quarters.
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Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women

Global Women's Issues and Knowledge

Author: Cheris Kramarae,Dale Spender

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1135963150

Category: Reference

Page: 2050

View: 3372

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For a full list of entries and contributors, sample entries, and more, visit the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women website. Featuring comprehensive global coverage of women's issues and concerns, from violence and sexuality to feminist theory, the Routledge International Encyclopedia of Women brings the field into the new millennium. In over 900 signed A-Z entries from US and Europe, Asia, the Americas, Oceania, and the Middle East, the women who pioneered the field from its inception collaborate with the new scholars who are shaping the future of women's studies to create the new standard work for anyone who needs information on women-related subjects.
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Chimpanzee Travels

On and Off the Road in Africa

Author: Dale Peterson

Publisher: University of Georgia Press

ISBN: 9780820324890

Category: Nature

Page: 279

View: 6616

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A lifelong fascination with primates led Dale Peterson to Africa, which he crisscrossed in hope of sighting chimpanzees in the wild. As with any adventure worth retelling, however, Peterson's detours are as notable as his destinations. With the good-natured fatalism of the tested traveler, Peterson tells of trains and riverboats, opportunists and ecotourists, rain forests and shantytowns as he conveys the pitfalls of going forth on a budget as tiny as the continent is vast. Along the way, we also meet Jane Goodall and several other renowned primate researchers and caretakers. This is travel writing with a purpose, an account that inspires both admiration and concern for Africa's people, places, and natural diversity.
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Beyond War

The Human Potential for Peace

Author: Douglas P. Fry

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199885869

Category: Social Science

Page: 352

View: 8312

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A profoundly heartening view of human nature, Beyond War offers a hopeful prognosis for a future without war. Douglas P. Fry convincingly argues that our ancient ancestors were not innately warlike--and neither are we. He points out that, for perhaps ninety-nine percent of our history, for well over a million years, humans lived in nomadic hunter-and-gatherer groups, egalitarian bands where warfare was a rarity. Drawing on archaeology and fascinating recent fieldwork on hunter-gatherer bands from around the world, Fry debunks the idea that war is ancient and inevitable. For instance, among Aboriginal Australians, warfare was an extreme anomaly. Fry also points out that even today, when war seems ever present, the vast majority of us live peaceful, nonviolent lives. We are not as warlike as we think, and if we can learn from our ancestors, we may be able to move beyond war to provide real justice and security for the world.
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The Goodness Paradox

The Strange Relationship Between Virtue and Violence in Human Evolution

Author: Richard Wrangham

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 1101870915

Category: Science

Page: 400

View: 8357

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“A fascinating new analysis of human violence, filled with fresh ideas and gripping evidence from our primate cousins, historical forebears, and contemporary neighbors.” —Steven Pinker, author of The Better Angels of Our Nature We Homo sapiens can be the nicest of species and also the nastiest. What occurred during human evolution to account for this paradox? What are the two kinds of aggression that primates are prone to, and why did each evolve separately? How does the intensity of violence among humans compare with the aggressive behavior of other primates? How did humans domesticate themselves? And how were the acquisition of language and the practice of capital punishment determining factors in the rise of culture and civilization? Authoritative, provocative, and engaging, The Goodness Paradox offers a startlingly original theory of how, in the last 250 million years, humankind became an increasingly peaceful species in daily interactions even as its capacity for coolly planned and devastating violence remains undiminished. In tracing the evolutionary histories of reactive and proactive aggression, biological anthropologist Richard Wrangham forcefully and persuasively argues for the necessity of social tolerance and the control of savage divisiveness still haunting us today.
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