Review: The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined


The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined
The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined by Steven Pinker
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I won’t waste space recapping my 11-post recap series. This is a large book because it contains a lot of information about the human condition, information not taught in history class. I’ve done my best to distill it to these blog posts, which I hope was not folly, but I know it would be folly to try to distill it in a single concluding paragraph. Bottom line is, watch the TED Talk, and read (or skim!) the posts in this series. I challenge anyone not to be blown away by this evidence-based approach to world history and human psychology. I hope that a handful of people at least make it through this series and pick up the book itself. Its 1000 pages of lucid explanation and shocking facts are sure to challenge you as it challenged me. To think differently, to be less nostalgic and more optimistic, to question assumptions, and to seek out facts to support (or bust!) deeply-held beliefs.

Here are my blog posts on each individual chapter:
Chapters 1&2: The Past is a Foreign Country
Chapter 3: The Civilizing Process
Chapter 4: The Humanitarian Revolution
Chapter 5: The Long Peace
Chapter 6: The New Peace
Chapter 7: The Rights Revolutions
Chapter 8: Inner Demons
Chapter 9: Better Angels
Chapter 10: On Angels’ Wings
Wrapping Up

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Victor A. Davis has always loved reading and writing short stories. He is an avid hiker and even when away from the world of laptops and wifi, keeps a pocket paperback and a handwritten journal to keep him company on trail. He is the author of two short story collections, Grains of Sand and The Gingerbread Collection. Join his Mailing List for special announcements about upcoming works.