Wednesday, March 21, 2018

Can't-Wait Wednesday: The Human Instinct by Kenneth R. Miller

Can't-Wait Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted at Wishful Endings, to spotlight and talk about the books we're excited about that we have yet to read. It's based on Waiting On Wednesday hosted at Breaking the Spine.


The Human Instinct: How We Evolved to Have Reason, Consciousness, and Free Will by Kenneth R. Miller
Expected publication: April 17th 2018 by Simon & Schuster

A radical, optimistic exploration of how humans evolved to develop reason, consciousness, and free will.

Lately, the most passionate advocates of the theory of evolution seem to present it as bad news. Scientists such as Richard Dawkins, Lawrence Krauss, and Sam Harris tell us that our most intimate actions, thoughts, and values are mere byproducts of thousands of generations of mindless adaptation. We are just one species among multitudes, and therefore no more significant than any other living creature.

Now comes Brown University biologist Kenneth R. Miller to make the case that this view betrays a gross misunderstanding of evolution. Natural selection surely explains how our bodies and brains were shaped, but Miller argues that it’s not a social or cultural theory of everything. In The Human Instinct, he rejects the idea that our biological heritage means that human thought, action, and imagination are pre-determined, describing instead the trajectory that ultimately gave us reason, consciousness and free will. A proper understanding of evolution, he says, reveals humankind in its glorious uniqueness—one foot planted firmly among all of the creatures we’ve evolved alongside, and the other in the special place of self-awareness and understanding that we alone occupy in the universe.

Equal parts natural science and philosophy, The Human Instinct is a moving and powerful celebration of what it means to be human.


The Human Instinct is a book that I would call brain food. And the more brain food for me, the better. I really kind of crave it. I can't ever get enough of this kind of nonfiction (more recommendations are always much appreciated!) The book involves science and philosophy, both topics I'm very interested in, especially when it's about evolution. I'm also very interested what the author has to say about the concept of consciousness. If someone handed this book to me right this second I would probably just sit down with it and read it in one sitting, assuming no one would interrupt me... That's how excited I am about it and how much I want to read it. ♥


27 comments:

  1. Not my usual kind of read, but it sounds SO interesting! Philosophy was one of my favourite subjects at school :) I really hope this book works great for you!

    Thanks for sharing, here's my WoW!

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    1. The only downside is that nonfiction almost always is so much more expensive than regular fiction. But I want this book so much so I'll make it work somehow. :)

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  2. Sounds like an interesting read. Hope you'll enjoy it :)

    My CWW

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  3. Gosh too heavy content for me, which means I get to look forward to youur review :)

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    1. Sometimes I just crave something heavier in the nonfiction department but I just saw the book doesn't release on TBD until June 1st so it might be a long time before I can actually read it. *sobs*

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  4. Sounds fascinating and I hope you enjoy it. Great pick.

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  5. Definitely an interesting topic, although I fear a lot of it would go over my head! I hope you enjoy this one!

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    1. I think it's definitely a book to take your sweet time with but I think it's going to be super fascinating!

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  6. Enjoy!! I like the term brain food :)

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  7. This sounds incredibly interesting! And it reminds me that I need to read more non-fiction! I hope you'll enjoy it!

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    1. Me too! Even though I do read a lot of nonfiction already but mostly Hourly History books so this would be something a little different.

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  8. This sounds like a great brain food book. I also like books about the consciousness but in a sci-fi kind of way. I hope you enjoy this one!

    Mary my Can’t Wait Wednesday!

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    1. I like those kind of sci-fi books too. Especially if it involves an AI of some kind. Although that's different from human conciousness. :D

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  9. Sounds like the perfect book for you, according to your words below the summary. Hope you´ll enjoy it.

    Best wishes
    Vi @Inkvotary

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    1. It does sound perfect for me!! *grabby hands*

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  10. This one sounds really intriguing! You will definitely get your star of brain food from this one when you get the chance to read it. I hope that you love it! :)

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    1. Oh definitely! xD It's a bit too expensive to order right now but maybe it'll go down in price a few months after it releases.

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  11. I don't read a lot of non-fiction but I do hope you love it. Maybe you can snag it from your library or something until the price comes down.

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  12. Great pick! I really need to read nonfiction books again!

    Here’s my WoW!

    Ronyell @ Rabbit Ears Book Blog

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  13. This does sound very interesting. I would be interested in this author's perspective. I hope you do get a chance to read this one and enjoy it!

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  14. This is new to me!!! Brain food is always good - I need more brain food. :D Happy reading, Stephanie!

    Have a fantastic week. =)

    Alyssa @ The Eater of Books!

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  15. OMG, Steph!! What an AMAZING pick!! I LOVE brain food!! I'm adding this book to my Goodreads shelves RIGHT AWAY!! It sounds like really FASCINATING reading!! KUDOS to you for picking it!! And thanks for putting it on my radar!! :D

    Thanks as well for commenting on my own CWW post!! HUGS!!! <3 <3 <3 :) :) :)

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  16. Haha I hope your brain food fills up your mind in the best way possible!!!

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  17. Great pick, this one is not my kind of book but it does looks and sounds very intriguing. I hope you enjoy it when you get the chance too read it. Thank you so much for stopping by my CWW post last week.

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