Better angels of our nature origin

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better angels of our nature origin

Quote by Abraham Lincoln: “We are not enemies, but friends. We must not be...”

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The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined by Steven Pinker (Audiobook) - Part 3/5

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Will she succeed this year? The winner of the prize will be announced on 26 November. Referencing the Bible, the Iliad and other historical texts, he presents body counts from previous centuries that far outdo those of the last hundred years. And this is simply scene-setting for his argument. Pinker even cites the decline of violent childhood games as a factor — nowadays these are deemed inappropriate, but in our past, channeling aggressive impulses in such a manner was the norm. The later chapters take on our own nature, and this is less convincing ground. We are, he argues, wired for violence, even if we do not commit such acts.

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Questions about Definitions. Violence by institutions naturally includes war, genocide, corporal and capital punishment, and deliberate famines. What about metaphorical violence, like verbal aggression? No, physical violence is a big enough topic for one book as the length of Better Angels makes clear. No; the fact that Bill Gates has a bigger house than I do may be deplorable, but to lump it together with rape and genocide is to confuse moralization with understanding. Ditto for underpaying workers, undermining cultural traditions, polluting the ecosystem, and other practices that moralists want to stigmatize by metaphorically extending the term violence to them. Questions about the Origins of the Book.


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