In Born to Be Good, Dacher Keltner demonstrates that humans are not hardwired to lead lives that are “nasty, brutish, and short”—we are in fact born to be good. Antony van Leeuwenhoek changed how we look at the natural world. Born in Delft, the Netherlands, in , he came from a family of brewers. In Born to Be Good, Dacher Keltner demonstrates that humans are not hardwired to lead lives that are “nasty, brutish, and short”-we are in fact.

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Fascinating stuff about the evolution of positive emotions and behaviors – why we laugh, smile, touch; how dance evolved; what our minute facial movements really mean – Darwin shows up, as does the Dalai Lama. Mar 18, Rossdavidh rated it liked it Shelves: Feb 09, Linda Tuplin rated it it was ok. May 19, Melanie rated it liked it. This takes us off on a tour of the human expressions and emotions: His research focuses on the prosocial emotions such as love, sympathy, and gratitudemorality, and power.

Compassion is not a blind emotions that catapults people pell-mell toward the next warm body that walks by. Unfort The first three chapters are somewhat startling and encouraging, and Keltner dachre on the idea that humans are not born selfish.

I liked it, but is science so not necessarily an easy read.

It took me over two years to read this book, and here’s why. User Review – Flag as inappropriate Good stuff in this book.

Born to be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life – Dacher Keltner – Google Books

Open Preview See a Problem? That the evolutionary process has born out the traits of cooperation and compassion because they are what is most advantageous for our survival.

At some points, you completely forgot eb were supposedly reading a book about why people are good – it felt like a psychology textbook on emotional development. As Pete This book makes the ieltner point that human nature is not exclusively selfish, as epitomized in Dawkins’ title “The Selfish Gene”, but instead exhibits, in many respects, cooperation and compassion.

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This is a very well-written book that describes the scientific triggers and reasons behind many of our positive emotions.

But its connection to the principal aim of the book is questionable. So if you think that’s weird, don’t worry about it, the rest of the book is pretty much about how facial expressions can affect mood and how people are wired to not be a-holes the current American political climate n Another book that I have no idea why I put it on my to-read list.

Keltner correctly notes that Darwin himself first suggested this, insisting on “the greater strength of the social or maternal instincts than that of any other instinct or motive. Keltner is a working researcher as well as a prosocial activist. Norton Company first published To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Keltner’s basic thesis, which he builds up through all of the studies done on all of these basic emotional states, is this: The Science of a Meaningful Life Norton paperback. Lists with This Book.

Born to Be Good: The Science of a Meaningful Life

Rather than reading it with a feeling of tension, a mix of excitement and dread, reading “Born to Be Good” was light, optimistic, and reassuring. Robert Wright’s book “Nonzero” comes to mind in particular — Wright argues that the extension of humankind’s cooperative circle is based in mathematical game theory, and is the basis of modern civilization.

My library Help Advanced Book Search. Many will find it worthwhile. Although I was lured in by the promise of learning about human’s innate goodness something I do not actually believe but was hoping for insightinstead I quickly became bored with facial patterns.

I was surprised to learn he was a student of Paul Ekman, so his writings on how certain emotions are tied to facial expressions are very strong. The topic is crucial and fascinating–I hope in his next popular article or book he shares the reactions of current scientists to his research and theories. Eat your heart out Hobbes. Have any of the studies been reproduced? The topic is crucial and fascinating–I hope in his next popular article Keltner is a working researcher as well as a prosocial activist.

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The presentation of Darwin’s work with emotion and body language was especially interesting.

I’d like to see Diana Ackerman take this research and put her magic to it, maybe the Natural History of the Smile? As interesting as the research is, the book still seems like a lecture; not really entertaining. I enjoyed the details about the different ways in which facial expressions communicate and spread good feelings.

Dec 14, Kathryn Bashaar rated it liked it. Adam Smith was unfairly disparage Totally biased, simplistic, and overly optimistic, but some of the studies presented were interesting. By combining stories of scientific discovery, personal narrative, and Eastern philosophy, Keltner illustrates his discussions with more than fifty photographs of human emotions.

This book makes the compelling point that human nature is not exclusively selfish, as epitomized in Dawkins’ title “The Selfish Gene”, but instead exhibits, in many respects, cooperation and compassion. The first chapter was amazing and I thought I was going to read a boo about Buddhist philosophy, or media analyses, or a sociological critique that we’re all motivated for good.

Bbe investigates an old mystery of human evolution: These chapters all contained lengthy discussions and details about tiny facial movements and how to distinguish between genuine and false smiles. I would wager it comes from the self and the object DL, celebrity, etc is just an affect image on which we project ideas.