"An very important and well timed message concerning the organic roots of human kindness."
—Desmond Morris, writer of The bare Ape
Are we our brothers' keepers? can we have an intuition for compassion? Or are we, as is usually assumed, in simple terms on the earth to serve our personal survival and pursuits? during this thought-provoking publication, the acclaimed writer of Our internal Ape examines how empathy comes evidently to an outstanding number of animals, together with people.
By learning social behaviors in animals, corresponding to bonding, the herd intuition, the forming of trusting alliances, expressions of comfort, and clash answer, Frans de Waal demonstrates that animals–and humans–are "preprogrammed to arrive out." He has came upon that chimpanzees deal with buddies which are wounded via leopards, elephants provide "reassuring rumbles" to teenagers in misery, and dolphins help unwell partners close to the water's floor to avoid them from drowning. From day one people have innate sensitivities to faces, our bodies, and voices; we've got been designed to consider for one another.
De Waal's thought runs counter to the belief that people are inherently egocentric, which might be visible within the fields of politics, legislations, and finance, and whichseems to be evidenced by means of the present greed-driven inventory industry cave in. yet he cites the public's outrage on the U.S. government's loss of empathy within the wake of typhoon Katrina as an important shift in perspective–one that helped Barack Obama turn into elected and ushered in what may perhaps develop into an Age of Empathy. via a greater figuring out of empathy's survival price in evolution, de Waal indicates, we will interact towards a extra simply society in response to a extra beneficiant and exact view of human nature.
Written in layman's prose with a wealth of anecdotes, wry humor, and incisive intelligence, The Age of Empathy is vital analyzing for our embattled times.
From the Hardcover edition.