Happy New Year! The January Philosophy Book of the Month is The Runaway Species. Discuss it now.
The February Philosophy Book of the Month is The Fourth Age by Byron Reese (Nominated by RJG.)
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I didn't read this book, although I did read The Social Conquest of Earth. With regard to the argument between Wilson and Dawkins about group selection, I come down strongly on the side of Wilson, and here's the explanation. Dawkins seems to be tied to the idea that evolution is strictly a matter of spontaneous mutations being propagated or failing based on the effects they produce. And that is certainly the major driver of major changes. But there's also a huge effect from the spreading of existing mutations through a population - in other words, the increasing frequency of existing mutations within a species. And that's what drives group selection, I believe. Personality traits like empathy and tendency to cooperate are directed by a large number of alleles, not just one, and so gradually evolution "finds" the best combination. Thus gradually empathy increased to the ideal point to ensure survival for our hunter-gatherer ancestors - not too little, not too much. That fine tuning - of all sorts of personality and physical traits - is also an important part of evolution.
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A pretty good integrative look and book, and yes, comments here about redundancy et. al. were on the mark. Nice to see someone with his background taking up central issues.