Our author also reviewed Steven Pinker’s The Better Angels Of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined.
‘For Pinker, modern life is marked by ever increasing circles of reciprocity, encompassing wider and wider groups of people. These interactions encourage habits of self-control and cultivate a deeper respect for others. We are not, however, more empathetic than our ancestors, just more reasonable—better equipped to engage in scientific and abstract reasoning; and he cites claims that I.Q. scores have risen over the past century. Greater intelligence has produced a greater receptivity to liberalism, defined as a respect for personal autonomy and liberty, and quite simply better behavior, reflected by an aversion to the sort of cruelty and violence that was formerly commonplace. Pinker dismisses even our “recent ancestors” as “morally retarded.’
Thanks to a reader for the link. Here’s Reason’s interview with Pinker a while back about the book in question:
Related On This Site: What about a World Leviathan?: At Bloggingheads Steven Pinker Discusses War And Thomas Hobbes…From Reason.TV Via YouTube: ‘Steven Pinker on The Decline of Violence & “The Better Angels of Our Nature”‘
Snyder is perhaps not a fan of libertarianism Timothy Snyder Responds To Steven Pinker’s New Book At Foreign Policy: ‘War No More: Why The World Has Become More Peaceful’