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  • Spread @10:39AM, 2015-12-18
    Tags: beards, darwin,   

    Survival of the Scruffiest 

    Civilization is at war with nature. That is true at least with regard to facial hair. In the heat of this centuries-long battle, on which billions of dollars are spent each year, few have paused to consider how the war began in the first place. Why did nature give men—and some women—beards? How did they end up with a band of hair on their cheeks and chins that society requires they scrape off every day? If one hopes to discover the meaning of beards, it makes sense to start with these basic questions. And that will require us to peer into the mists of the evolutionary past.

    Read the rest from New Republic

  • Titus Toledo @7:30AM, 2015-01-08
    Tags: dacher keltner, darwin, human nature   

    We Are Built To Be Kind 

    Greed is good. War is inevitable. Whether in political theory or popular culture, human nature is often portrayed as selfish and power hungry. UC Berkeley psychologist Dacher Keltner challenges this notion of human nature and seeks to better understand why we evolved pro-social emotions like empathy, compassion and gratitude.

    We’ve all heard the phrase ‘survival of the fittest’, born from the Darwinian theory of natural selection. Keltner adds nuance to this concept by delving deeper into Darwin’s idea that sympathy is one of the strongest human instincts — sometimes stronger than self-interest.

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