- Taschenbuch: 688 Seiten
- Verlag: Penguin; Auflage: 01 (2. April 2015)
- Sprache: Englisch
- ISBN-10: 0141980788
- ISBN-13: 978-0141980782
- Größe und/oder Gewicht: 13,3 x 3,1 x 19,9 cm
- Durchschnittliche Kundenbewertung: 28 Kundenrezensionen
- Amazon Bestseller-Rang: Nr. 17.654 in Fremdsprachige Bücher (Siehe Top 100 in Fremdsprachige Bücher)
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How the Mind Works (Englisch) Taschenbuch – 2. April 2015
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'Powerful and gripping . . . To have read it is to have consulted a first draft of the structural plan of the human psyche . . . a glittering tour de force.' Spectator 'Witty popular science that you enjoy reading for the writing as well as for the science.' The New York Times 'How the Mind Works will change the way your mind works.' The Times
Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende
Steven Pinker is one of the world's most influential thinkers and writers on the human condition. His popular and highly praised books include The Better Angels of Our Nature, The Sense of Style, The Stuff of Thought, The Blank Slate, How the Mind Works, and The Language Instinct. The recipient of several major awards for his teaching, books, and scientific research, Pinker is Harvard College Professor and Johnstone Family Professor of Psychology at Harvard University. He also writes frequently for The New York Times, the Guardian and other publications. He has been named Humanist of the Year, Prospect magazine's "The World's Top 100 Public Intellectuals," Foreign Policy's "100 Global Thinkers," and Time magazine's "The 100 Most Influential People in the World Today."
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I realise it wont appeal to everyone , but no one could claim this book isnt provacative and thought provoking.
buy this book!
Nothing much new for me. Cannot support the hype around this athour.
Like Pinker's previous and highly-regarded work, The Language Instinct , How the Mind Works is authentic (indeed authoritative) in terms of its scientific content and yet readily accessible to the non-scientist. If our organs of computation are a product of natural selection (as Pinker asserts they are), then natural selection must be viewed as "the only evolutionary force that acts like an engineer, 'designing' organs that accomplish improbable but adaptive outcomes." Having thus introduced and then discussed what he calls the "standard equipment" for computation in Chapter 1, Pinker shifts his attention to Thinking Machines in Chapter 2. According to Plato, Pinker notes, "we are trapped inside a cave and know the world only through the shadows it casts upon the wall. The skull is our cave, and mental representations are the shadows. The information in an internal representation is all that we know about the world."
In succeeding chapters, Pinker completes his analysis of what the mind is, how it evolved, and how it allows us to see, think, feel, laugh, interact, create, invent, discover, and in countless other ways function.
Caves and shadows have existed since long before Plato formulated his allegory. It remains for the mind to be aware of them, and, to recognize (if not always resolve) the "mysteries" they suggest. Some careless readers may complain that How the Mind Works raises more questions than it answers. Pinker would probably accept that complaint as a compliment.
Pinker marries Darwin's theory of evolution to the latest developments in neuroscience and computation. He shows in detail how the process of natural selection shaped our entire neurological networks; how the struggle for survival selects from among our genes those most fit to flourish in our environment. Nature has produced in us bodies, brains and minds attuned to coping intelligently with whatever our environment demands. Housed in our bodies, our minds structure neural networks into adaptive programmes for handling our perceptions. Pinker concludes, "The mind is a system of organs of computation, designed by natural selection to solve the kinds of problems our ancestors faced in their foraging way of life."
Our beliefs and desires are information, allowing us to create meaning. "Beliefs are inscriptions in memory, desires are goal inscriptions, thinking is computation, perceptions are inscriptions triggered by sensors, trying is executing operations triggered by a goal." Pinker writes that the mind has a 'design stance' for dealing with artefacts, a 'physical stance' for dealing with objects, and an 'intentional stance' for dealing with people. "Causal and inferential roles tend to be in sync because natural selection designed both our perceptual and our inferential modules to work accurately, most of the time, in this world." With this down-to-earth kind of explanation, there is no need to invoke mysterious intangible powers: "We don't need spirits or occult forces to explain intelligence." Pinker sums up the recent amazing developments in neurobiology and cognitive science. This book, like those by his colleagues Daniel Dennett ('Darwin's dangerous idea' and 'Consciousness explained') and Richard Dawkins ('River out of Eden' and 'Unweaving the rainbow'), should be required reading. They are all Darwinians, but then why shouldn't they be? It is just like saying that all physicists are Einsteinians nowadays, or that all poets and playwrights are Shakespeareans, or that all osteopaths are Stillians. Their books make Karl Popper, so hostile to Darwin, and Californian gurus like Fritjof Capra, sadly outdated.