The Goodness Paradox

Feb 25, 2019

Monday, we're talking about this strange mix in human nature of virtue and violence. The anthropologist Richard Wrangham is fascinated by how and why humans evolved to be both so nice and so brutal.

For the past 250 million years, humans have become increasingly peaceful animals. By and large we get along. We care for and help each other. And then there are the acts of extraordinary aggression. Brutality. Bloodshed. But why? Why are we both virtuous and violent? The anthropologist Richard Wrangham is fascinated by this paradox. In a new book, he climbs through our evolutionary family tree and delves into our deep past to better understand the dueling angels of our nature.

Richard Wrangham is the Ruth B. Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology at Harvard University. His new book is called The Goodness Paradox: The Strange Relationship Between Virtue and Violence in Human Evolution [Indie bookstores|Amazon|Audible].