The Bonobo and the Atheist In Search of Humanism Among the Primates

Title : The Bonobo and the Atheist In Search of Humanism Among the Primates
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN 13 : 9780393089196
Date : 2013-03-25

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In this lively and illuminating discussion of his landmark research, esteemed primatologist Frans de Waal argues that human morality is not imposed from above but instead comes from within. Moral behavior does not begin and end with religion but is in fact a product of evolution. For many years, de Waal has observed chimpanzees soothe distressed neighbors and bonobos share their food. Now he delivers fascinating fresh evidence for the seeds of ethical behavior in primate societies that further cements the case for the biological origins of human fairness. Interweaving vivid tales from the animal kingdom with thoughtful philosophical analysis, de Waal seeks a bottom-up explanation of morality that emphasizes our connection with animals. In doing so, de Waal explores for the first time the implications of his work for our understanding of modern religion. Whatever the role of religious moral imperatives, he sees it as a “Johnny-come-lately” role that emerged only as an addition to our natural instincts for cooperation and empathy. But unlike the dogmatic neo-atheist of his book’s title, de Waal does not scorn religion per se. Instead, he draws on the long tradition of humanism exemplified by the painter Hieronymus Bosch and asks reflective readers to consider these issues from a positive perspective: What role, if any, does religion play for a well-functioning society today? And where can believers and nonbelievers alike find the inspiration to lead a good life? Rich with cultural references and anecdotes of primate behavior, The Bonobo and the Atheist engagingly builds a unique argument grounded in evolutionary biology and moral philosophy. Ever a pioneering thinker, de Waal delivers a heartening and inclusive new perspective on human nature and our struggle to find purpose in our lives.

The Bonobo and the Atheist In Search of Humanism Among the Primates

Title : The Bonobo and the Atheist In Search of Humanism Among the Primates
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN 13 : 9780393073775
Date : 2013-03-25

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In this thoroughly engaging book, leading primatologist and thinker Frans de Waal offers a heartening, illuminating new perspective on human nature. Bringing together his pioneering research on primate behavior, the latest findings in evolutionary biology, and insights from moral philosophy, de Waal explains that we don't need the specters of God or the law in order to act morally. Instead, our moral nature stems from our biology—specifically, our primate social emotions, which include empathy, reciprocity, and fairness. We can glimpse this in the behavior of our closest relatives in the animal kingdom: chimpanzees soothe distressed neighbors, and bonobos will voluntarily open a door to offer a companion access to their own food. Building on a wealth of evidence, de Waal reveals that morality is not dictated to us by religion or social strictures. Rather, it is the inevitable product of our biological nature.

Chimpanzee Politics

Title : Chimpanzee Politics
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : JHU Press
ISBN 13 : 0801886562
Date : 2007-08-30

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The first edition of Frans de Waal's Chimpanzee Politics was acclaimed not only by primatologists for its scientific achievement but also by politicians, business leaders, and social psychologists for its remarkable insights into the most basic human needs and behaviors. Twenty-five years later, this book is considered a classic. Featuring a new preface that includes recent insights from the author, this anniversary edition is a detailed and thoroughly engrossing account of rivalries and coalitions—actions governed by intelligence rather than instinct. As we watch the chimpanzees of Arnhem behave in ways we recognize from Machiavelli (and from the nightly news), de Waal reminds us again that the roots of politics are older than humanity.

Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are

Title : Are We Smart Enough to Know How Smart Animals Are
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : W. W. Norton & Company
ISBN 13 : 9780393246193
Date : 2016-04-25

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A New York Times Bestseller From world-renowned biologist and primatologist Frans de Waal, a groundbreaking work on animal intelligence destined to become a classic. What separates your mind from an animal’s? Maybe you think it’s your ability to design tools, your sense of self, or your grasp of past and future—all traits that have helped us define ourselves as the planet’s preeminent species. But in recent decades, these claims have eroded, or even been disproven outright, by a revolution in the study of animal cognition. Take the way octopuses use coconut shells as tools; elephants that classify humans by age, gender, and language; or Ayumu, the young male chimpanzee at Kyoto University whose flash memory puts that of humans to shame. Based on research involving crows, dolphins, parrots, sheep, wasps, bats, whales, and of course chimpanzees and bonobos, Frans de Waal explores both the scope and the depth of animal intelligence. He offers a firsthand account of how science has stood traditional behaviorism on its head by revealing how smart animals really are, and how we’ve underestimated their abilities for too long. People often assume a cognitive ladder, from lower to higher forms, with our own intelligence at the top. But what if it is more like a bush, with cognition taking different forms that are often incomparable to ours? Would you presume yourself dumber than a squirrel because you’re less adept at recalling the locations of hundreds of buried acorns? Or would you judge your perception of your surroundings as more sophisticated than that of a echolocating bat? De Waal reviews the rise and fall of the mechanistic view of animals and opens our minds to the idea that animal minds are far more intricate and complex than we have assumed. De Waal’s landmark work will convince you to rethink everything you thought you knew about animal—and human—intelligence.

Our Inner Ape

Title : Our Inner Ape
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : Penguin
ISBN 13 : 9781101217382
Date : 2006-08-01

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Visit the author's Web site at www.ourinnerape.com It’s no secret that humans and apes share a host of traits, from the tribal communities we form to our irrepressible curiosity. We have a common ancestor, scientists tell us, so it’s natural that we act alike. But not all of these parallels are so appealing: the chimpanzee, for example, can be as vicious and manipulative as any human. Yet there’s more to our shared primate heritage than just our violent streak. In Our Inner Ape, Frans de Waal, one of the world’s great primatologists and a renowned expert on social behavior in apes, presents the provocative idea that our noblest qualities—generosity, kindness, altruism—are as much a part of our nature as are our baser instincts. After all, we share them with another primate: the lesser-known bonobo. As genetically similar to man as the chimpanzee, the bonobo has a temperament and a lifestyle vastly different from those of its genetic cousin. Where chimps are aggressive, territorial, and hierarchical, bonobos are gentle, loving, and erotic (sex for bonobos is as much about pleasure and social bonding as it is about reproduction). While the parallels between chimp brutality and human brutality are easy to see, de Waal suggests that the conciliatory bonobo is just as legitimate a model to study when we explore our primate heritage. He even connects humanity’s desire for fairness and its morality with primate behavior, offering a view of society that contrasts markedly with the caricature people have of Darwinian evolution. It’s plain that our finest qualities run deeper in our DNA than experts have previously thought. Frans de Waal has spent the last two decades studying our closest primate relations, and his observations of each species in Our Inner Ape encompass the spectrum of human behavior. This is an audacious book, an engrossing discourse that proposes thought-provoking and sometimes shocking connections among chimps, bonobos, and those most paradoxical of apes, human beings.

Bonobo

Title : Bonobo
Author : Frans Lanting
Publisher : Univ of California Press
ISBN 13 : 0520205359
Date : 1997

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Describes the habits and behavior of the bonobo, the ape believed to be biologically closest to humans, which has an egalitarian, female-dominant society based on broad sexual contact, and discusses the risks the animals face

Peacemaking Among Primates

Title : Peacemaking Among Primates
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : Harvard University Press
ISBN 13 : 067465921X
Date : 1990

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Examines how simians cope with aggression, and how they make peace after fights.

Primates and Philosophers

Title : Primates and Philosophers
Author : Frans de Waal
Publisher : Princeton University Press
ISBN 13 : 1400830338
Date : 2009-01-12

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Can virtuous behavior be explained by nature, and not by human rational choice? "It's the animal in us," we often hear when we've been bad. But why not when we're good? Primates and Philosophers tackles this question by exploring the biological foundations of one of humanity's most valued traits: morality. In this provocative book, renowned primatologist Frans de Waal argues that modern-day evolutionary biology takes far too dim a view of the natural world, emphasizing our "selfish" genes and reinforcing our habit of labeling ethical behavior as humane and the less civilized as animalistic. Seeking the origin of human morality not in evolution but in human culture, science insists that we are moral by choice, not by nature. Citing remarkable evidence based on his extensive research of primate behavior, de Waal attacks "Veneer Theory," which posits morality as a thin overlay on an otherwise nasty nature. He explains how we evolved from a long line of animals that care for the weak and build cooperation with reciprocal transactions. Drawing on Darwin, recent scientific advances, and his extensive research of primate behavior, de Waal demonstrates a strong continuity between human and animal behavior. He probes issues such as anthropomorphism and human responsibilities toward animals. His compelling account of how human morality evolved out of mammalian society will fascinate anyone who has ever wondered about the origins and reach of human goodness. Based on the Tanner Lectures de Waal delivered at Princeton University's Center for Human Values in 2004, Primates and Philosophers includes responses by the philosophers Peter Singer, Christine M. Korsgaard, and Philip Kitcher and the science writer Robert Wright. They press de Waal to clarify the differences between humans and other animals, yielding a lively debate that will fascinate all those who wonder about the origins and reach of human goodness.

Good Natured

Title : Good Natured
Author : Frans B. M. DE WAAL
Publisher : Harvard University Press
ISBN 13 : 9780674033177
Date : 2009-06-30

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Frans B. M. DE WAAL has been writing in one form or another for most of his life. You can find so many inspiration from Good Natured also informative, and entertaining. Click DOWNLOAD or Read Online button to get full Good Natured book for free.

The God Argument

Title : The God Argument
Author : A. C. Grayling
Publisher : A&C Black
ISBN 13 : 9781408837429
Date : 2013-03-14

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There has been a bad-tempered quarrel between defenders and critics of religion in recent years. Both sides have expressed themselves acerbically because there is a very great deal at stake in the debate. This book thoroughly and calmly examines all the arguments and associated considerations offered in support of religious belief, and does so in full consciousness of the reasons people have for subscribing to religion, and the needs they seek to satisfy by doing so. And because it takes account of all the issues, its solutions carry great weight. The God Argument is the definitive examination of the issue, and a statement of the humanist outlook that recommends itself as the ethics of the genuinely reflective person.