Books

‘Enlightenment’ now and empathy later?

Steven Pinker wrote Enlightenment Now thinking he was making the case for “reason, science, humanism, and progress.” But instead produced a 556 page text filled with some interesting statistics, a few valid insights, a lot of naiveté, and a stunning lack of empathy.

Let me be clear about a few things: I both practice and love science, especially evolutionary biology. …

Web Roundups

Web Roundup: The Gut Microbiome and our Bacterial Selves

Attempts at understanding the true nature our innermost selves has long been a human preoccupation. Are our inner worlds populated with repressed memories and persistent neuroses? Or perhaps our genes direct and define us even as they hide in the interior spaces of our interior spaces? Well, now there is a new contender in the hidden constitution of human selfhood: …

In the Journals

Special issue of BioSocieties on biohistory

The latest issue of BioSocieties is another special issue, this one guest-edited by UCLA historian Soraya de Chadarevian and devoted to biohistory.  Here’s how de Chadarevian describes the central issues in her introduction:

“Genetic studies of human history often make headlines under such sensational titles as ‘Geneticists rewrite history’, ‘Pig DNA tells a different story of human migration’