Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Steven Pinker: an important message




An interview with the Harvard psychologist and linguist on violence, language and Twitter.

New York Times

Steven Pinker is a professor of psychology at Harvard University. He is a leading expert on language and an advocate of evolutionary psychology. 

In a series of best-selling books, he has argued that our mental faculties - from emotions to decision-making to visual cognition . were forged by natural selection.

He is also a critic of those who would deny the deep marks of evolution on our minds - social engineers who believe they can remake children as they wish, modernist architects who believe they can rebuild cities as utopias. 

Even in the 21st century, Dr. Pinker argues, we ignore our evolved brains at our own peril.





In his latest book, “The Better Angels of Our Nature” (2011), he investigates one of the most primal aspects of life: violence. He argues that violence has fallen drastically over thousands of years - whether one considers homicide rates, war casualties as a percentage of national populations, or other measures.

Read the article on New York Times here




Photo: Huffington Post | Education

Education:

As educators, we  know that students are vulnerable to high rates of hate, discrimination and violence at school or cyberbullying, most of the time, from their colleagues.

It's natural for kids and teens to worry about whether this type of incident may someday affect them. 

Young people say that they are verbally or physically abused at school. And that violates the right of young people to education and safe learning environments.

How can we help them deal with these fears? Talking with kids about these violences and what they watch or hear about them, can put frightening information into context.

Steven Pinker's book and words give us a hopeful message about violence falling.

If you're looking for a book or other how-to document, perhaps it will be a good choice reading the book in order to help students at school and online.


G-Souto
06.12.2011
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References:
Human Nature Pathologist


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