Pinker has two younger siblings too. His sister Susan Pinker is a psychologist by profession and author of the book The Sexual Paradox whereas his brother designs policies and analyzes them for the Canadian government. Known to be a popular psychologist, linguist, scientist and author, Pinker is a professor of Harvard University having completed his BA degree in Psychology at McGill University and then earned his PhD degree in experimental Psychology from Harvard University. He is the one who advocated the computational theory of mind and evolutionary psychology.
The problem, of course, is that counterintuitive outcomes also arise in geology and human history. For popular topics, like the Fall of Rome, hundreds of distinct explanations have been proposed with no consensus emerging and some even doubting that Rome fell at all! And even those who have defended the profession from anti-causal postmodernism, like Richard J.
Evans and John Lewis Gaddis, agree that cause-and-effect explanations for a particular event usually apply only to that place, at that time [6,7].
From experience, historians as a whole tend to be extremely skeptical of generalized theories of historical change.
Yet within the last several decades, mathematically-minded historians , economists [9,10], psychologists , anthropologists  and sociologists  have used the tools of Darwinian evolution and dynamical systems theory to produce substantive gains to our understanding of ourselves as a species.
Because humans are so uniquely dependent on culture and technology, this Darwinian approach necessarily develops new evolutionary ideas e. And, because of the overriding importance of groups to human existence, models of cultural group selection have also become a staple of this analysis.
As in evolutionary ecology, the value of these models including group selection ones is often not in their ability to make predictions, but to help us understand essential causal relationships.
These models also tell us that seemingly trivial examples yes, including the spread of steel-belted radials and touchtone phones can provide deep insight into similar phenomena throughout human history. Noel Perrin, Giving Up the Gun: George Basalla, The Evolution of Technology.
Cambridge University Press,p. Princeton University Press,p. In Defense of History. Why States Rise and Fall. Princeton University Press, Maciej Chudek, Joseph Henrich.
Rodney Stark, Rise of Christianity: A Sociologist Reconsiders History. An Introduction New York: Macmillan, ; thanks to Ryan Baldini for the reference.
July 2, Bret A. I am also a member of the Cultural Evolution Lab group. Together with Adrian BellI have traced the historic spread of Polynesian canoe technology, focusing specifically on the environmental and historical antecedents of particular canoe designs.
Working with Monique Borgerhoff Mulder I have done survival analysis work on data from East African agriculturalists, which appeared in the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society in This research, mostly qualitative, was used in a UC Davis white paper on sustainability and development.In February Steven Pinker, "whose hair has long been the object of admiration, and envy, and intense study", was nominated by acclamation as the first member of the Luxuriant Flowing Hair Club for Scientists (LFHCfS) organized by the Annals of Improbable Research.
In this book, Steven Pinker explores the different theories about human nature that have been dominant and have revolutionized the world throughout history. Furthermore, the book includes new theories that have come about in psychology and other social sciences that better describe human nature.
In this book, Steven Pinker explores the different theories about human nature that have been dominant and have revolutionized the world throughout history.
Steven Pinker and the limitations of Darwinian theory. HISTORICALLY SPEAKING, the contributions which Darwinian science has made to our conception of human nature have left a great deal to be desired. For although Darwin’s theory provides a solution to the problem of species and an account of the development of organic forms, the many .
Pinker is a strong supporter of the "computational theory of mind," his "recurring metaphor of the mind as machine." This is the idea in cognitive science that we can learn a great deal from computing machines about intelligence and the reasoning processes in our minds.
In February Steven Pinker, "whose hair has long been the object of admiration, and envy, and intense study", was nominated by acclamation as the first member of the Luxuriant Flowing Hair Club for Scientists (LFHCfS) organized by the Annals of Improbable Research.