The Rational Animal by Douglas T. Kenrick
How Evolution Made Us Smarter Than We Think

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How do people make decisions, and how has the brain evolved to make the choices that it does...Sharp, piquant science/behavioral-economics writing.
-Kirkus

Synopsis

Why are Amazonian hunter-gatherers better at logic than Harvard students? Why did the Zambian president reject food donations during a famine? And why do billionaires work so hard—only to give their hard-earned money away? In this animated tour of the latest in behavioral science, psychologist Douglas T. Kenrick and marketing professor Vladas Griskevicius argue that while our decision making may seem superficially irrational, our misjudgments are the result of a psychological mismatch between ancestral drives for survival and our modern lifestyles. Ultimately, The Rational Animal offers an uplifting message—that while our brains may still house caveman impulses, we have evolved to be smarter than we think.
 

About Douglas T. Kenrick

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Douglas T. Kenrick is a Professor of Psychology at Arizona State University. His work has been covered in Newsweek, the New York Times, and Psychology Today. Kenrick lives in Tempe, Arizona.
 
Published September 10, 2013 by Basic Books. 290 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Science & Math, Business & Economics, Professional & Technical, Biographies & Memoirs, Political & Social Sciences, Education & Reference. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Rational Animal
All: 2 | Positive: 1 | Negative: 1

Kirkus

Good
on Jun 17 2013

How do people make decisions, and how has the brain evolved to make the choices that it does...Sharp, piquant science/behavioral-economics writing.

Read Full Review of The Rational Animal: How Evol... | See more reviews from Kirkus

Publishers Weekly

Below average
on Jun 24 2013

Kenrick and Griskevicius present some interesting psychological studies to support their thesis, but their near-Panglossian view of human decision-making—one that could be marshaled to justify nearly any action according to an evolutionary standard that fails to take ethics into account—is distressing.

Read Full Review of The Rational Animal: How Evol... | See more reviews from Publishers Weekly

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