Press

Religions Owe Their Success to Martyrs – Joe Henrich in New Scientist

Religions Owe Their Success to Martyrs – Joe Henrich in New Scientist

What is the difference between Jesus Christ and Superman? The content of religions and popular tales is often similar, but only religions have martyrs, according to an analysis of behavioural evolution published this week. [more]

Human Nature – The Remix: Joe Henrich, Ara Norenzayan, and Steve Heine in Nature

Human Nature – The Remix: Joe Henrich, Ara Norenzayan, and Steve Heine in Nature

Darwin famously gave scant attention to humans in On the Origin of Species, contenting himself with the teasing pledge that “Light will be thrown on the origin of man and his history”. The promised light came in the The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex (1871) and The Expression of the Emotions […]

Exploring A Hostile World – Ara Norenzayan in the Vancouver Sun

Exploring A Hostile World – Ara Norenzayan in the Vancouver Sun

Renowned University of B.C. social psychologist Ara Norenzayan, 37, spent his teenage years living in bomb-ravaged Lebanon thinking he could die at any moment in a civil war largely fuelled by religion. [more]

What Science Offers the Humanities – Book Review in Science

What Science Offers the Humanities – Book Review in Science

To describe his project, Edward Slingerland could hardly have chosen a more direct title than What Science Offers the Humanities: Integrating Body and Culture.Coming from an academic career in Asian studies and theology (as a nonbeliever), Slingerland (a co-founder of the Centre for the Study of Human Evolution, Cognition, and Culture at the University of British Columbia) prepared by spending the past five years […]

Bridging universities' two cultures – Edward Slingerland in the Vancouver Sun

Bridging universities' two cultures – Edward Slingerland in the Vancouver Sun

In 1959, the writer and scientist C.P. Snow gave a famous lecture on what he saw as the lamentable and growing abyss between the “two cultures,” the natural sciences and the humanities. In the almost half century since Snow’s lecture, not much has changed in the intellectual landscape of modern western life. Humanists — those […]

Proud Is Proud, Sighted or Not, Researchers Find – Jessica Tracy in the New York Times

Proud Is Proud, Sighted or Not, Researchers Find – Jessica Tracy in the New York Times

After his victory in a judo match, the athlete thrust his arms into the air in an elated V — the universal symbol of triumph, something he had seen other athletes do thousands of times. Except for one thing: he couldn’t see. more…

The God Effect – Ara Norenzayan in The New York Times

The God Effect – Ara Norenzayan in The New York Times

Some anthropologists argue that the idea of God first arose in larger societies, for the purpose of curbing selfishness and promoting cooperation. Outside a tightly knit group, the reasoning goes, nobody can keep an eye on everyone’s behavior, so these cultures invented a supernatural agent who could. But does thinking of an omniscient God actually […]