Mean Genes

From Sex To Money To Food: Taming Our Primal Instincts

Author: Terry Burnham,Jay Phelan

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 0465046983

Category: Science

Page: 272

View: 7941

Why do we want--and why do we do--so many things that are bad for us? And how can we stop? In Mean Genes economist Terry Burnham and biologist Jay Phelan offer advice on how to conquer our own worst enemy--our survival-minded genes. Having evolved in a time of scarcity, when our ancestors struggled to survive in the wild, our genes are poorly adapted to the convenience of modern society. They compel us to overeat, spend our whole paycheck, and cheat on our spouses. But knowing how they work, Burnham and Phelan show that we can trick these "mean genes" into submission and cultivate behaviors that will help us lead better lives. A lively, humorous guide to our evolutionary heritage, Mean Genes illuminates how we can use an understanding of our biology to beat our instincts--before they beat us.

Mean Genes

From Sex to Money to Food, Taming Our Primal Instincts

Author: Terry Burnham,Jay Phelan

Publisher: Da Capo Press

ISBN: 9780738202303

Category: Science

Page: 263

View: 5845

Explains the genetic role behind "modern" problems such as thrill-seeking, infidelity, eating disorders, and addiction.

Mean Genes

From Sex To Money To Food: Taming Our Primal Instincts

Author: Terry Burnham,Jay Phelan

Publisher: Hachette UK

ISBN: 0465046983

Category: Science

Page: 272

View: 2546

Why do we want—and why do we do—so many things that are bad for us? And how can we stop? In Mean Genes economist Terry Burnham and biologist Jay Phelan offer advice on how to conquer our own worst enemy—our survival-minded genes. Having evolved in a time of scarcity, when our ancestors struggled to survive in the wild, our genes are poorly adapted to the convenience of modern society. They compel us to overeat, spend our whole paycheck, and cheat on our spouses. But knowing how they work, Burnham and Phelan show that we can trick these "mean genes" into submission and cultivate behaviors that will help us lead better lives. A lively, humorous guide to our evolutionary heritage, Mean Genes illuminates how we can use an understanding of our biology to beat our instincts—before they beat us.

What Is Life?

A Guide to Biology with Physiology

Author: Jay Phelan

Publisher: Macmillan Higher Education

ISBN: 1429277874

Category: Science

Page: 1088

View: 7095

Written by an accomplished teacher, practicing biologist, and internationally best-selling author, What Is Life? A Guide to Biology was developed to engage students who may never take another biology course—future business owners, lawyers, teachers, poets, etc. Drawing on his extensive classroom experience, Jay Phelan focuses on clearly articulating key concepts and eliminating unnecessary detail and topics—without introducing inaccuracies from simplification. What Is Life? prepares students to talk confidently and knowledgeably about science with their friends, to be intelligent consumers of scientific information, and to make responsible decisions about scientific issues. Now, What Is Life? A Guide to Biology with Physiology includes chapters on plant and animal physiology. Visit the What Is Life? preview site at www.whfreeman.com/phelanpreview

Go Wild

Free Your Body and Mind from the Afflictions of Civilization

Author: John J. Ratey,Richard Manning

Publisher: Little, Brown

ISBN: 0316246077

Category: Psychology

Page: 288

View: 1648

The scientific evidence behind why maintaining a lifestyle more like that of our ancestors will restore our health and well-being. In GO WILD, Harvard Medical School Professor John Ratey, MD, and journalist Richard Manning reveal that although civilization has rapidly evolved, our bodies have not kept pace. This mismatch affects every area of our lives, from our general physical health to our emotional wellbeing. Investigating the power of living according to our genes in the areas of diet, exercise, sleep, nature, mindfulness and more, GO WILD examines how tapping into our core DNA combats modern disease and psychological afflictions, from Autism and Depression to Diabetes and Heart Disease. By focusing on the ways of the past, it is possible to secure a healthier and happier future, and GO WILD will show you how.

Mean Markets and Lizard Brains

How to Profit from the New Science of Irrationality

Author: Terry Burnham

Publisher: John Wiley & Sons

ISBN: 9780470440629

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 320

View: 641

Everyone from journalists to market pros are turning to behavioral finance to explain, analyze, and predict market direction. In contrast to old-school assumptions of cool-headed rationality, the new behavioral school embraces hot-blooded human irrationality as a core feature of both individuals and financial markets. The 2002 Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to scholars of this new scientific approach to irrationality. In Mean Markets and Lizard Brains, Terry Burnham, an economist who has a proven ability to translate complex topics into everyday language, reveals the biological causes of irrationality. The human brain contains ancient structures that exert powerful and often unconscious influences on behavior. This "lizard brain" may have helped our ancestors eat and reproduce, but it wreaks havoc with our finances. Going far beyond cataloguing our financial foibles, Dr. Burnham applies this novel approach to all of today's most important financial topics: the stock market, the economy, real estate, bonds, mortgages, inflation, and savings. This broad and scholarly investigation provides an in-depth look at why manias, panics, and crashes happen, and why people are built to want to buy at irrationally high prices and sell at irrationally low prices. Most importantly, by incorporating the new science of irrationality, readers can position themselves to profit from financial markets that often seem downright mean. Mean Markets and Lizard Brains skillfully identifies the craziness that is part of human nature, helps us see it in ourselves, and then shows us how to profit from a world that doesn't always make sense.

The Wisdom Paradox

How Your Mind Can Grow Stronger As Your Brain Grows Older

Author: Elkhonon Goldberg

Publisher: Penguin

ISBN: 9781440626951

Category: Science

Page: 352

View: 7467

The Wisdom Paradox explores the aging of the mind from a unique, positive perspective. In an era of increasing fears about mental deterioration, world-renowned neuropsychologist Elkhonon Goldberg provides startling new evidence that though the brain diminishes in some tasks as it ages, it gains in many ways. Most notably, it increases in what he terms “wisdom”: the ability to draw upon knowledge and experience gained over a lifetime to make quick and effective decisions. Goldberg delves into the machinery of the mind, separating memory into two distinct types: singular (knowledge of a particular incident or fact) and generic (recognition of broader patterns). As the brain ages, the ability to use singular memory declines, but generic memory is unaffected—and its importance grows. As an individual accumulates generic memory, the brain can increasingly rely upon these stored patterns to solve problems effortlessly and instantaneously. Goldberg investigates the neurobiology of wisdom, and draws on historical examples of artists and leaders whose greatest achievements were realized late in life.

The Most Dangerous Animal

Human Nature and the Origins of War

Author: David Livingstone Smith

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 9780312537449

Category: Psychology

Page: 288

View: 1213

A multidisciplinary study draws on elements of anthropology, psychology, and evolutionary theory to analyze the relationship between human nature and the history of warfare, offering a disturbing look at humankind's innate penchant for war. Reprint. 20,000 first printing.

The Evolution of Desire

Strategies of Human Mating

Author: David M. Buss,M Buss

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 0465093302

Category: Psychology

Page: 368

View: 1338

If we all want love, why is there so much conflict in our most cherished relationships? To answer this question, argues the prominent psychologist David M. Buss, we must look into our evolutionary past. Based on the most massive study of human mating ever undertaken, encompassing more than 10,000 people of all ages from thirty-seven cultures worldwide, The Evolution of Desire is the first book to present a unified theory of human mating behavior. In this fully revised and updated edition of The Evolution of Desire, Buss has incorporated the explosion of research in the field of human mating since its original 1994 publication, from startling discoveries about the evolutionary advantages of infidelity and physical attractiveness to new findings regarding sexual orientation, the emotion of sexual disgust, and incest avoidance adaptations.

Strangers to Ourselves

Author: Timothy D. Wilson

Publisher: Harvard University Press

ISBN: 9780674013827

Category: Psychology

Page: 262

View: 1247

A tour of the human unconsciousness as defined by contemporary psychology explains that it is comprised of sophisticated mental processes, identifying a gap between self-knowledge and reality, and warning about the dangers of too much introspection. (Psychology & Self-Help)

How Vertebrates Left the Water

Author: Michel Laurin

Publisher: Univ of California Press

ISBN: 0520947983

Category: Science

Page: 216

View: 7841

More than three hundred million years ago—a relatively recent date in the two billion years since life first appeared—vertebrate animals first ventured onto land. This usefully illustrated book describes how some finned vertebrates acquired limbs, giving rise to more than 25,000 extant tetrapod species. Michel Laurin uses paleontological, geological, physiological, and comparative anatomical data to describe this monumental event. He summarizes key concepts of modern paleontological research, including biological nomenclature, paleontological and molecular dating, and the methods used to infer phylogeny and character evolution. Along with a discussion of the evolutionary pressures that may have led vertebrates onto dry land, the book also shows how extant vertebrates yield clues about the conquest of land and how scientists uncover evolutionary history.

Catching Fire

How Cooking Made Us Human

Author: Richard W. Wrangham

Publisher: Profile Books

ISBN: 184668286X

Category: Science

Page: 309

View: 2282

In this stunningly original book, Richard Wrangham argues that it was cooking that caused the extraordinary transformation of our ancestors from apelike beings to Homo erectus. At the heart of Catching Fire lies an explosive new idea: the habit of eating cooked rather than raw food permitted the digestive tract to shrink and the human brain to grow, helped structure human society, and created the male-female division of labour. As our ancestors adapted to using fire, humans emerged as "the cooking apes". Covering everything from food-labelling and overweight pets to raw-food faddists, Catching Fire offers a startlingly original argument about how we came to be the social, intelligent, and sexual species we are today. "This notion is surprising, fresh and, in the hands of Richard Wrangham, utterly persuasive ... Big, new ideas do not come along often in evolution these days, but this is one." -Matt Ridley, author of Genome

The Bed of Procrustes

Philosophical and Practical Aphorisms

Author: Nassim Nicholas Taleb

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 0679643680

Category: Business & Economics

Page: 176

View: 9124

Bed of Procrustes is a standalone book in Nassim Nicholas Taleb’s landmark Incerto series, an investigation of opacity, luck, uncertainty, probability, human error, risk, and decision-making in a world we don’t understand. The other books in the series are Fooled by Randomness, The Black Swan, Antifragile, and Skin in the Game. By the author of the modern classic The Black Swan, this collection of aphorisms and meditations expresses his major ideas in ways you least expect. The Bed of Procrustes takes its title from Greek mythology: the story of a man who made his visitors fit his bed to perfection by either stretching them or cutting their limbs. It represents Taleb’s view of modern civilization’s hubristic side effects—modifying humans to satisfy technology, blaming reality for not fitting economic models, inventing diseases to sell drugs, defining intelligence as what can be tested in a classroom, and convincing people that employment is not slavery. Playful and irreverent, these aphorisms will surprise you by exposing self-delusions you have been living with but never recognized. With a rare combination of pointed wit and potent wisdom, Taleb plows through human illusions, contrasting the classical values of courage, elegance, and erudition against the modern diseases of nerdiness, philistinism, and phoniness. “Taleb’s crystalline nuggets of thought stand alone like esoteric poems.”—Financial Times

The Moral Animal

Why We Are, the Way We Are: The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology

Author: Robert Wright

Publisher: Vintage

ISBN: 0307772748

Category: Psychology

Page: 496

View: 9593

Are men literally born to cheat? Does monogamy actually serve women's interests? These are among the questions that have made The Moral Animal one of the most provocative science books in recent years. Wright unveils the genetic strategies behind everything from our sexual preferences to our office politics--as well as their implications for our moral codes and public policies. Illustrations. From the Trade Paperback edition.

The Status Syndrome

How Social Standing Affects Our Health and Longevity

Author: Michael Marmot

Publisher: Macmillan

ISBN: 9781429900669

Category: Social Science

Page: 336

View: 9751

Based on decades of his own research, a pioneering epidemiologist reveals the surprising factors behind who lives longer and why You probably didn't realize that when you graduated from college you increased your lifespan, or that your co-worker who has a master's degree is more likely to live a longer and healthier life. Seemingly small social differences in education, job title, income, even the size of your house or apartment have a profound impact on your health. For years we have focused merely on how advances in technology and genetics can extend our lives and cure disease. But as Sir Michael Marmot argues, we are looking at the issue backwards. Social inequalities are not a footnote to the real causes of ill health in industrialized countries; they are the cause. The psychological experience of inequality, Marmot shows, has a profound effect on our lives. And while this may be alarming, it also suggests a ray of hope. If we can understand these social inequalities, we can also mitigate their effects. In this groundbreaking book, Marmot, an internationally renowned epidemiologist, marshals evidence from around the world and from nearly thirty years of his research to demonstrate that how much control you have over your life and the opportunities you have for full social participation are crucial for health, well-being, and longevity. Just as Bowling Alone changed the way we think about community in America, The Status Syndrome will change the way we think about our society and how we live our lives.

Genetic Enslavement

Author: Bruce L. Gary

Publisher: Bruce L Gary

ISBN: 0979844606

Category:

Page: 400

View: 3810

Every living thing is assembled by its genes. This is a crucial starting point for exploring a fundamental human dilemma. As stated so starkly by Richard Dawkins, a human is "a lumbering machine, created for the task of safeguarding and propagating the all-important genes within." I would add that since the machine's behavior is driven by brain circuits pre-wired by those genes, sometimes we are prone to doing things which work against our individual best interest in order to advance the cause of the genes. In other words, some of our genes are our enemies ("outlaw genes") because they jeopardize individual well¬being as they work to assure themselves genetic immortality. Every thinking person must face the following dilemma: "How can I achieve liberation from genetic pitfalls when my values and thinking are so profoundly influenced by the very same genes that have created those pitfalls?" The more one tries to answer this question the harder it is to imagine that an answer is possible. Nevertheless, this is a challenge that can become irresistibly fascinating. This book is an attempt to bravely explore one of Humanity's most profound existential dilemmas. The fate of a civilization is also affected by the "outlaw genes," especially those responsible for a feeling of discontent with civilization and a vague preference for a simpler society, which I would describe as resembling those found in the human ancestral environment. This book explores how a flawed human nature undermines every civilization, starting a decline and eventual fall. Those of us born during the 20th Century are lucky for having seen the best of times for our civilization, and as a questionable bonus we may now witness from close-up the forces that have condemned every past civilization to ruin.

The Interpretation of Cultures

Author: Clifford Geertz

Publisher: Basic Books

ISBN: 0465093566

Category: Social Science

Page: 576

View: 8462

In The Interpretation of Cultures, the most original anthropologist of his generation moved far beyond the traditional confines of his discipline to develop an important new concept of culture. This groundbreaking book, winner of the 1974 Sorokin Award of the American Sociological Association, helped define for an entire generation of anthropologists what their field is ultimately about.

Loose-leaf Version for What is Life? A Guide to Biology with Physiology

A Guide to Biology with Physiology

Author: Jay Phelan

Publisher: Macmillan Higher Education

ISBN: 1319030807

Category: Science

Page: 1024

View: 7108

From the front of the classroom to the top of the bestseller’s list, award-winning educator Jay Phelan knows how to tell the story of how scientists investigate the big questions about life. He is also a master at using biology as a springboard for developing the critical thinking skills and scientific literacy that are essential to students through college and throughout their lives.

The Second Sex (Vintage Feminism Short Edition)

Author: Simone de Beauvoir

Publisher: Random House

ISBN: 1473521912

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 721

Vintage Feminism: classic feminist texts in short form WITH AN INTRODUCTION BY NATALIE HAYNES When this book was first published in 1949 it was to outrage and scandal. Never before had the case for female liberty been so forcefully and successfully argued. De Beauvoir’s belief that ‘One is not born, but rather becomes, a woman’ switched on light bulbs in the heads of a generation of women and began a fight for greater equality and economic independence. These pages contain the key passages of the book that changed perceptions of women forever. TRANSLATED BY CONSTANCE BORDE AND SHEILA MALOVANY-CHEVALLIER ANNOTATED AND INTRODUCED BY MARTINE REID