The Social Instinct: How Cooperation Shaped the World

£9.95

Available for Pre-order. Due July 2022.
The Social Instinct: How Cooperation Shaped the World Author: Format: Paperback / softback First Published: Published By: Vintage Publishing Language: English ISBN: 9781529112122 Categories: , , , ,

Why cooperate? This may be the most important scientific question we have ever, and will ever, face. The science of cooperation tells us not only how we got here, but also where we might end up. Cooperation explains how strands of DNA gave rise to modern-day nation states. It defines our extraordinary ecological success as well as many of the most surprising features of what make us human: not only why we live in families, why we have grandmothers and why women experience the menopause, but also why we become paranoid and jealous, and why we cheat. Nichola Raihani also introduces us to other species who, like us, live and work together. From the pied babblers of the Kalahari to the cleaner fish of the Great Barrier Reef, they happen to be some of the most fascinating and extraordinarily successful species on this planet. What do we have in common with these other species, and what is it that sets us apart? Written at a time of global pandemic, when the challenges and importance of cooperation have never been greater, The Social Instinct is an exhilarating, far-reaching and thought-provoking journey through all life on Earth, with profound insights into what makes us human and how our societies work.

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A phenomenally important book. The story of why we humans evolved to become such a wonderfully cooperative, social species, and what that means for the world today. Nichola Raihani will change the way we think about ourselves. -- Lewis Dartnell, author of Origins: How the Earth Shaped Human History This is a superb book about how important cooperation is in biology, from molecules and cells to families and whole societies. -- Alice Roberts Vibrant science about a topic that could not be more important: How did our superpower of cooperation evolve against the odds? This engaging book wears its strong scientific credentials lightly. I could not put it down. -- Uta Frith, Professor Emeritus of Cognitive Development, University College London Cooperation is at the heart of our bodies, our societies and our ecosystem. Nichola Raihani's stunning book flips the selfish gene on its head, showing us not only how to better understand the world, but also how to change it. -- Matthew Cobb, author of The Idea of the Brain In this captivating book, Nichola Raihani ... provides a compelling argument that cooperation is the secret of human success and yet has never been as crucial as it is now, during a global pandemic and with the threat of the climate crisis. I found this intriguing and beautifully written book hard to put down. -- Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, author of Inventing Ourselves: The Secret Life of the Teenage Brain