Human Evolution and Male Aggression: Debunking the Myth of Man and Ape

by Anne Innis Dagg and Lee E. Harding


"Should be widely read and incorporated into both high school and university curricula because the myths they challenge are so deeply embedded in mainstream society and are perpetuated and legitimated ... an eye-opening book that will definitely change many people's thoughts about men and violence. It is also an important bridge between academic disciplines ...and will assist social scientists in their quest to motivate political and economic elites to effectively address the ways in which the current political economic order contributes to brutal male aggression." - Walter S. DeKeseredy, Anna Deane Carlson Endowed Chair of Social Sciences, West Virginia University, for Literary Review of Canada

“A great deal of popular and scientific literature today is presenting a distorted view of humans, and especially human males, as being inherently aggressive and even murderous. In this book, Dagg and Harding provide ample evidence from biology and anthropology that this is a highly biased view of human nature. They show that the facts of evolutionary history and ethnology, starting with the vastly maligned monkeys and apes, contradict to a startling degree today's tendency to downgrade and reduce Homo sapiens and also ignore the fact that throughout their evolutionary history, humans, both males and females, have lived mainly in cooperative, peaceful societies.” –Robert Wald Sussman, Professor of Physical Anthropology Department of Anthropology, Washington University in St. Louis

“Dagg and Harding have assembled a large body of information addressing the issue of whether male aggressive behaviors were the norm during human evolution, as is commonly believed. They come down firmly and convincingly on the side of peacefulness and cooperation, and not violence, as the hallmarks of human evolution. Their conclusions are generated by presenting, in detail, topics that range from male researcher biases to extremely thorough analyses of primate social behaviors. They have written a book that is laden with refreshing earnestness and one that somewhat aggressively argues their viewpoint. All in all, this book is a provocative and an intellectually stimulating read.” – Jack J. Pasternak, Professor Emeritus, Department of Biology, University Of Waterloo


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