Arnold Kling  

What I'm Reading (Slowly)

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Second Nature, by Haim Ofek. It was written in 2001. It tries to address some puzzles in evolution and in ancient economic history. For example, why is the human brain overdeveloped, in the sense that it is larger than necessary to enable humans to secure their ecological niche? I suspect that if it had come out in the past two years the book would have been much more widely read, propelled by economics blogs.

Meir Kohn sent me an email recommending the book. He did so because Ofek argues that the human propensity to trade with strangers goes way back.

For more Ofek, see his review of Paul Seabright. Also, see Ape to Farmer in Five Uneasy Steps, from this conference.


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COMMENTS (3 to date)
Patrik Åkerman writes:

Maybe this review/book will prove helpful to answer your first question

Patrik Åkerman writes:

adding the link this time
http://www.americanscientist.org/template/BookReviewTypeDetail/assetid/57123;jsessionid=baag3bXuJ30X8O

Les writes:

Judging by the politicians we have elected, its really hard to believe that the human brain is too large.

A much better case can be made that the human brain is much too tiny.

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