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Supernatural Selection: How Religion Evolved
In 2006, scientist Richard Dawkins published a blockbuster bestseller, The God Delusion. This atheist manifesto sparked a furious reaction from believers, who have responded with numerous books of their own. By pitting science against religion, however, this debate overlooks what science can tell us about religion. According to evolutionary psychologist Matt J. Rossano, wh ...more
Hardcover, 294 pages
Published May 28th 2010 by Oxford University Press, USA
(first published 2010)
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Apr 21, 2013 Michael Brady rated it it was amazing
Homo Sapiens was not always the most successful hominin on the planet. Homo Sapiens did not always have speech, art, or religion. Rebuffed by Homo Neanderthalensis in the Levant 100,000 years ago, Homo Sapiens returned to Africa where the entire species was nearly exterminated by the Mount Toba super-eruption. Homo Sapiens left Africa for the second time ~70,000 years ago and promptly colonized the entire planet. What changed? Why do all human societies have speech, dance, art, and religion? A c ...more
Professor Rossano does an excellent job synthesising the latest research in ethnography, anthropology, and even philosophy in his highly erudite exposition through the history of human evolution out of Africa (twice). I was impressed with his deep understanding of philosophy regarding ethics, and the care that he took to make sure every claim he made was backed up in the footnotes by multiple bibliographic resources. However, I thought he dwelled too much on what capacities of religious life cou ...more