The Origins of Virtue

The Origins of Virtue

3.99 (2,855 ratings by Goodreads)
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Why are people nice to each other? What are the reasons for altrusim? Matt Ridley explains how the human mind has evolved a special instinct for social exchange, offering a lucid and persuasive argument about the paradox of human more

Product details

  • Paperback | 304 pages
  • 128 x 196 x 22mm | 200g
  • Penguin Books Ltd
  • London, United Kingdom
  • English
  • 13 b&w line drawings
  • 0140244042
  • 9780140244045
  • 88,566

Review Text

Ridley made his name with an excellent book about sex and evolution, The Red Queen. This is an even better book, about the evolution of society, altruism and cooperation - in short, sociobiology, although that word (regarded by some as an obscenity) does not appear in the index. There is little that is new in this book, where we meet such familiar concepts as the Prisoner's Dilemma and the evolutionary nature of hawks and doves; but Ridley puts the package together in such a satisfying manner that the whole is much greater than the sum of its parts. (Kirkus UK)show more

About Matt Ridley

MATT RIDLEY is a research fellow of the Institute of Economic Affairs and a Trustee of the International Centre for Life, living in Northumberland. His last book, The Red Queen, was short-listed for the Rhone-Poulenc Prize for science books and the Writers' Guild Award for more

Rating details

2,855 ratings
3.99 out of 5 stars
5 37% (1,069)
4 35% (991)
3 20% (572)
2 5% (149)
1 3% (74)
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