Top positive review
22 people found this helpful
on 6 May 2002
Sense & Nonsense in fact makes complete sense and is a 'must read' for anyone looking for a clear, intelligent and often entertaining discussion of the different evolutionary perspectives taken to study human behaviour.
Laland & Brown successfully introduce the salient characteristics of the major schools of thought (covering human sociobiology, behavioural ecology, evolutionary psychology, memetics and gene-culture coevolution), managing to give a balanced account of each. I especially enjoyed learning how the different schools of thought themselves evolved, often from common roots to represent very juxtaposed ideas. Despite these differences, Laland & Brown do an admirable job of picking their way through the historical and political debris that have too often been the outcome of clashes between these camps, to pick out the biological sense from the nonsense of each tradition.
It is refreshing to read an apolitical review of a subject that concerns us all and becomes increasingly relevant as communication makes the world a smaller place where we are forced to face up to and appreciate our behavioural and cultural similarities and differences.