The Consuming Instinct by Gad Saad
What Juicy Burgers, Ferraris, Pornography, and Gift Giving Reveal About Human Nature

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In this highly informative and entertaining book, the founder of the vibrant new field of evolutionary consumption illuminates the relevance of our biological heritage to our daily lives as consumers. While culture is important, the author shows that innate evolutionary forces deeply influence the foods we eat, the gifts we offer, the cosmetics and clothing styles we choose to make ourselves more attractive to potential mates, and even the cultural products that stimulate our imaginations (such as art, music, and religion).

The book demonstrates that most acts of consumption can be mapped onto four key Darwinian drives—namely, survival (we prefer foods high in calories); reproduction (we use products as sexual signals); kin selection (we naturally exchange gifts with family members); and reciprocal altruism (we enjoy offering gifts to close friends). The author further highlights the analogous behaviors that exist between human consumers and a wide range of animals.

For anyone interested in the biological basis of human behavior or simply in what makes consumers tick—marketing professionals, advertisers, psychology mavens, and consumers themselves—this is a fascinating read.

From the Hardcover edition.

About Gad Saad

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Gad Saad, Ph.D. (Montreal, Canada), a popular blogger for Psychology Today (Homo-Consumericus), is a professor of marketing at the John Molson School of Business at Concordia University. He holds the Concordia University Research Chair in Evolutionary Behavioral Sciences and Darwinian Consumption and is the author of The Evolutionary Bases of Consumption, plus numerous scientific papers.
Published June 21, 2011 by Prometheus Books. 381 pages
Genres: Business & Economics, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

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when the author declares that the clinically depressed are the only ones not suffering from the “delusional glow” of self-help books, readers may wonder if Saad isn’t getting a little punchy himself.

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Publishers Weekly

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Saad (The Evolutionary Bases of Consumption) argues that consumer preferences aren't only dictated by culture and socialization but also by our biological heritage.

Apr 18 2011 | Read Full Review of The Consuming Instinct: What ...

Monsters and Critics

Buss, author of The Handbook of Evolutionary Psychology and The Evolution of DesireWhat do all successful fast-food restaurants have in common?Why do men\'s testosterone levels rise when they drive a Ferrari or a Porsche?Why are women more likely to become compulsive shoppers and men more likely ...

Jul 14 2011 | Read Full Review of The Consuming Instinct: What ...

Psychology Today

Besides mangoes, blueberries, an iPad, and Legos, I bought a new book this week – the book explains why I bought mangoes, blueberries, an iPad, and Legos.

Jun 19 2011 | Read Full Review of The Consuming Instinct: What ...

Psychology Today

Besides a broad-ranging overview of research on marketing, psychology, economics, anthropology, and biology, Saad peppers the book with lots of take-home messages for consumers, policy-makers, and business people (an appealing feature of books aimed at the business crowd -- a la Heath and Heath’s...

Jun 19 2011 | Read Full Review of The Consuming Instinct: What ...

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