Brainwashed: The Seductive Appeal of Mindless Neuroscience
Psychiatrist and AEI scholar Sally Satel and psychologist Scott O. Lilienfeld reveal how many of the real-world applications of human neuroscience gloss over its limitations and intricacies, at times obscuring—rather than clarifying—the myriad factors that shape our behavior and identities. Brain scans are useful but often ambiguous representations of a highly complex system. The narrow focus on the brain’s physical processes also assumes that our subjective experiences can be explained away by biology alone. As Satel and Lilienfeld explain, this “neurocentric” view of the mind risks undermining our most deeply held ideas about selfhood, free will, and personal responsibility, putting us at risk of making harmful mistakes, whether in the courtroom, interrogation room, or addiction treatment clinic. A provocative account of our obsession with neuroscience, Brainwashed brilliantly illuminates what contemporary neuroscience and brain imaging can and cannot tell us about ourselves, providing a much-needed reminder about the many factors that make us who we are.
The Upcycle: Beyond Sustainability—Designing for Abundance
The Upcycle is the eagerly awaited follow-up to Cradle to Cradle, one of the most consequential ecological manifestoes of our time. Now, drawing on the lessons gained from 10 years of putting the Cradle to Cradle concept into practice with businesses, governments, and ordinary people, William McDonough and Michael Braungart envision the next step in the solution to our ecological crisis: We don't just use or reuse resources with greater effectiveness, we actually improve the world as we live, create, and build. McDonough and Braungart want to turn on its head our very understanding of the human role on earth: Instead of protecting the planet from human impact, why not redesign our activity to improve the planet? We can have a beneficial footprint. Abundance for all. The goal is within our reach.
Who Owns the Future?
Jaron Lanier's new book is a visionary reckoning with the effects network technologies have had on our economy. Lanier asserts that the rise of digital networks led our economy into recession and decimated the middle class. Now, as technology flattens more and more industries—from media to medicine to manufacturing—we are facing even greater challenges to employment and personal wealth. But there is an alternative to allowing technology to own our future. In this ambitious and deeply humane book, Lanier charts the path toward a new information economy that will stabilize the middle class and allow it to grow. It is time for ordinary people to be rewarded for what they do and share on the web. Insightful, original, and provocative, Who Owns the Future? is necessary reading for everyone who lives a part of their lives online.
Evolution, Games, and God: The Principle of Cooperation
According to the reigning competition-driven model of evolution, selfish behaviors that maximize an organism’s reproductive potential offer a fitness advantage over self-sacrificing behaviors—rendering unselfish behavior for the sake of others a mystery that requires extra explanation. Evolution, Games, and God addresses this conundrum by exploring how cooperation, working alongside mutation and natural selection, plays a critical role in populations from microbes to human societies. Inheriting a tendency to cooperate, argue the contributors to this book, may be as beneficial as the self-preserving instincts usually thought to be decisive in evolutionary dynamics. Assembling experts in mathematical biology, history of science, psychology, philosophy, and theology, the editors Robert Nowak and Sarah Coakley take an interdisciplinary approach to the terms “cooperation” and “altruism.”
Join Metanexus Today
Metanexus fosters a growing international network of individuals and groups exploring the dynamic interface between cosmos, nature and culture. Membership is open to all. Join Now!