Book cover of When Animals Dream: The Hidden World of Animal Consciousness by David Peña-Guzmán
Biological Sciences

When Animals Dream: The Hidden World of Animal Consciousness

Are humans the only dreamers on Earth? What goes on in the minds of animals when they sleep? When Animals Dream brings together behavioral and neuroscientific research on animal sleep with philosophical theories of dreaming. It shows that dreams provide an invaluable window into the cognitive and emotional lives of nonhuman animals, giving us access to a seemingly inaccessible realm of animal experience. […Learn More]

Book cover of Conscience: The Origins of Moral Intuition by Patricia Churchland
Biological Sciences

Conscience: The Origins of Moral Intuition

Conscience, a finalist for the PEN / E. O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award, explores why all social groups have moral systems and how these systems are formed. Distinguished professor Patricia S. Churchland brings together an understanding of the influences of neuroscience, genetics, and physical environment to elucidate how our brains are configured to form bonds and care for children, while also investigating why amoral psychopaths can arise. […Learn More]

Book cover of The Kindness of Strangers: How a Selfish Ape Invented a New Moral Code by Michael E. McCullough
Anthropology

The Kindness of Strangers: How a Selfish Ape Invented a New Moral Code

A sweeping psychological history of human goodness — from the foundations of evolution to the modern political and social challenges humanity is now facing.
How did humans, a species of self-centered apes, come to care about others? Since Darwin, scientists have tried to answer this question using evolutionary theory. In The Kindness of Strangers, psychologist Michael E. McCullough shows why they have failed and offers a new explanation instead. From the moment nomadic humans first settled down until the aftermath of the Second World War, our species has confronted repeated crises that we could only survive by changing our behavior. […Learn More]

Earth Sciences

The Precipice: Existential Risk and the Future of Humanity

This urgent and eye-opening book makes the case that protecting humanity’s future is the central challenge of our time.

If all goes well, human history is just beginning. Our species could survive for billions of years – enough time to end disease, poverty, and injustice, and to flourish in ways unimaginable today. But this vast future is at risk. With the advent of nuclear weapons, humanity entered a new age, where we face existential catastrophes – those from which we could never come back. […Learn More]

Philosophy

The Good Ancestor: A Radical Prescription for Long – Term Thinking

The most important question we must ask ourselves is, “Are we being good ancestors?”

So said Jonas Salk, who developed the polio vaccine in 1953 but refused to patent it—forgoing profit so that more lives could be saved.

Salk’s radical generosity to future generations should inspire us. But when leading philosopher Roman Krznaric examines society today, he sees just the opposite: Our short term, exploitative mindsets have “colonized the future.” […Learn More]