Ridley writes that the switches controlling our 30,000 or so genes not only form the structures of our brains but do so in such a way as to cue off the outside environment in a tidy feedback loop of body and behavior. In fact, it seems clear that we have genetic "thermostats" that are turned up and down by environmental factors. He challenges both scientific and folk concepts, from assumptions of what's malleable in a person to sociobiological theories based solely on the "selfish gene."
Ridley's proof is in the pudding for such touchy subjects as monogamy, aggression, and parenting, which we now understand have some genetic controls. Nevertheless, "the more we understand both our genes and our instincts, the less inevitable they seem." A consummate popularizer of science, Ridley once again provides a perfect mix of history, genetics, and sociology for readers hungry to understand the implications of the human genome sequence. --Therese Littleton --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
Matt Ridley has penned some of the best books on evolutionary science ever written.
Ridley provides new conceptual tools for creating a scientifically enriched rather than impoverished understanding of the human condition.
This makes clear that the genes execute what genetics dictates the same as they execute what nurture dictates.
five stars for genetics details and interesting topic.
a little disorganized as compared to more recent writings by matt ridley. Read more
A great book with astounding, humorous, and credible anecdotes that make Ridley's point: genes and environment work together, turn each other on, and combine in wondrous ways to... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Maria Folsom
Once again Ridley makes a complicated subject understandable in an entertaining and readable way. If you want to know what the status of the nature vs. Read morePublished 3 months ago by tom47
A very complex well researched text that once you get through it you need to go back and read the first chapter again to clarify what you just finished. Mr. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Richard C.
A pleasure to read. Informative and inventive in presenting interesting ways of viewing and interpreting the data presented. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Dee Mee
Really well written. Makes sense even to those of us with no scienc background, lots of food for thought. Recommended.Published 4 months ago by Amazon Customer
Great reading about adaptable genes that can be turned on / off and how the genes / RNA build a body.
A slightly confusing story flow and chapter structure.
And there were a few changes over the last 10 year. Why can t this be announced clearly by the Editor/ kindle?
Otherwise very good book.
I found the book a bit disjointed, yet I learned a lot from it. The "Rational Optimist" I think was written more fluidly then the "Agile Gene", and probably an... Read morePublished 12 months ago by Martin D.