It’s a belief that unites the left and right, psychologists and philosophers, writers and historians. It drives the headlines that surround us and the laws that touch our lives. From Machiavelli to Hobbes, Freud to Dawkins, the roots of this belief have sunk deep into Western thought. Human beings, we’re taught, are by nature selfish and governed by self-interest. Humankind makes a new argument: that it is realistic, as well as revolutionary, to assume that people are good. The instinct to cooperate rather than compete, trust rather than distrust, has an evolutionary basis going right back to the beginning of Homo sapiens. By thinking the worst of others, we bring out the worst in our politics and economics too.

In this major book, international-bestselling author Rutger Bregman takes some of the world’s most famous studies and events and reframes … More

Noam Chomsky is widely known and deeply admired for being the founder of modern linguistics, one of the founders of the field of cognitive science, & perhaps the most avidly read political theorist & commentator of our time. In these lectures, he presents a lifetime of philosophical reflection on all three of these areas of research, to which he has contributed for over half a century. In clear, precise, & nontechnical language, Chomsky elaborates on 50 years of scientific development in the study of language, sketching how his own work has implications for the origins of language, the close relations that language bears to thought, and its eventual biological basis.

He expounds and criticizes many alternative theories, such as those that emphasize the social, the communicative, and the referential aspects … More