How the Mind Works

How the Mind Works

Book - 1997
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A fascinating, provocative book exploring the mysteries of human thought and behavior, by the author of the acclaimed bestseller The Language Instinct.

The human mind is fantastically complex -- we often take its abilities for granted, yet few would argue that any amount of technology will ever duplicate human intelligence. How does the human mind work? How do we see in three dimensions? Why do we fall in love? How do we remember names and faces? How is it, indeed, that we ponder the nature of our own consciousness?

In this bold, extraordinary book, Steven Pinker, one of the world's leading cognitive scientists and author of the widely praised bestseller The Language Instinct, tackles the intricacies of the human mind to decipher how we think, feel, and act. Using "reverse-engineering" -- determining what natural selection designed the mind to accomplish in a hunting-and-gathering environment -- Pinker explains how the mind stores and uses information, a process that allowed our ancestors to understand and outsmart objects, animals, plants, and each other.

How the Mind Works makes sense of some of the more bewildering aspects of everyday life, such as: why is beauty important to us? How is it that we are moved to tears or laughter? Why do we feel that a run of heads makes the coin more likely to land tails? Why is self-restraint so difficult? This is a witty and compelling work, synthesizing the best of cognitive science and evolutionary biology.

Publisher: New York : W. W. Norton, c1997
ISBN: 9780393045352
0393045358
Branch Call Number: 153 PIN 1997
Characteristics: xii, 660 p. : ill

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redban Sep 05, 2014

Absolute classic; this is Steven Pinker in his realm of expertise. This book explores quite technical subjects but fortunately is more enjoyable to read than a textbook. Also highly recommended is Pinker's The Blank Slate. Pinker's Better Angels of Our Nature is also an excellent read, although he starts to venture in areas he is less well-versed in...

m
MaxBliss
Mar 12, 2013

Pinker on reddit AMA. http://www.reddit.com/r/IAmA/comments/1a67x4/i_am_steve_pinker_a_cognitive_psychologist_at/

c
Cabby
Dec 05, 2007

Finalist 1998 Pulitzer prize.

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