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eBook Lucy’s Legacy: Sex and Intelligence in Human Evolution epub

by Alison Jolly

eBook Lucy’s Legacy: Sex and Intelligence in Human Evolution epub
  • ISBN: 0674000692
  • Author: Alison Jolly
  • Genre: Other
  • Subcategory: Science & Mathematics
  • Language: English
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press; 1 edition (November 29, 1999)
  • Pages: 528 pages
  • ePUB size: 1558 kb
  • FB2 size 1812 kb
  • Formats lrf doc txt rtf


Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell.

Article in International Journal of Primatology 21(4):783-785 · August 2000 with 17 Reads. How we measure 'reads'.

Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell about being .

This is the story that unfolds in Lucy's Legacy, the saga of human evolution as told by a world-renowned primatologist who works among the female-dominant ringtailed lemurs of Madagascar

Lucy's Legacy: Sex and I. .has been added to your Cart.

Lucy's Legacy: Sex and I. In the second half of the book, she first examines different primate societies before moving on to a discussion of how human individuals and communities develop, including the evolution of gender, tool use, abstraction, imagination and cooperation.

Lucy's Legacy: Sex and Intelligence in Human Evolution. Joseph Jordania (2011). Why do People Sing? Music in Human Evolution. K. Marc W. Kirschner and John C. Gerhart (2006).

Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell about being human-not the all-too-familiar tale of.

In a book that takes us from the first cell to global society, Jolly shows us that to learn where we came from and where we go next, we need to understand how sex and intelligence, cooperation and love, emerged from the harsh Darwinian struggle in the past, and how these natural powers may continue to evolve in the future.

Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell about being human-not the all-too-familiar tale of selfishness, competition . Jolly's basic thesis is that the portrayal of evolution as "red in tooth and claw" is overblown

Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell about being human-not the all-too-familiar tale of selfishness, competition, and biology a.Jolly's basic thesis is that the portrayal of evolution as "red in tooth and claw" is overblown. Species survival requires at least as much co-operation as competition. There are continuous compromises made in nature, each of which is as likely to aid in survival of the participants as elimination of opposition would. Jolly isn't attempting to replace competition as the root of evolution so much as temper it. The tempering force is sex. Human Nature, Challenges, Consciousness. Died: February 6, 2014.

B OOK S UMMARIES Jolly, A. 2001: Lucy’s Legacy: Sex and Intelligence in Human Evolution. Harvard University Press, Cambridge, MA. 528 p. 2 line illus. cloth US$ 2. 5, £2. 0. ISBN 0-674-00069-2; paper US$ 1. 5, £1. 5, ISBN 0-674-00540-6. Writing from a female and sociobiological perspective, Jolly explores a host of subjects, ranging from the evolutionary pressures facing early bacteria to the future of human culture.

Early man, Evolution, Organic Evolution, Science, Women, Sociology, Life Sciences - Evolution - Human, Science, Evolution, Human Evolution, Anthropology - General, Life Sciences - Evolution, Intellect, Social evolution. Harvard University Press.

Alison Jolly believes that biologists have an important story to tell about being human--not the all-too-familiar tale of selfishness, competition, and biology as destiny but rather one of cooperation and interdependence, from the first merging of molecules to the rise of a species inextricably linked by language, culture, and group living. This is the story that unfolds in Lucy's Legacy, the saga of human evolution as told by a world-renowned primatologist who works among the female-dominant ringtailed lemurs of Madagascar.

We cannot be certain that Lucy was female--the bones themselves do not tell us. However, we do know, as Jolly points out in this erudite, funny, and informative book, that the females who came after Lucy--more adept than their males in verbal facility, sharing food, forging links between generations, migrating among places and groups, and devising creative mating strategies--played as crucial a role in the human evolutionary process as "man" ever did. In a book that takes us from the first cell to global society, Jolly shows us that to learn where we came from and where we go next, we need to understand how sex and intelligence, cooperation and love, emerged from the harsh Darwinian struggle in the past, and how these natural powers may continue to evolve in the future.

Comments: (7)
Kulwes
Just to warn anyone who thinks this book has anything to do with intelligence in the sense of psychometric tests, it doesn't. But it also has very little to say about the evolution of intelligence.

One of the main problems with this book is that the author is obviously enamoured with her own writing ability, leading to excessive length and the inclusion of apparently every irrelevant fact that came to mind. The author mentions a few times that her mother was an artist, and she obviously feels the trait is heritable: the book is littered with terrible poetry written by God knows who.

As the book progressed the subject matter became increasingly nebulous, until the author launched into a ludicrously protracted socialist rant / earth as living organism metaphor. Luckily by this stage of the book I was in skimming mode, but still managed the misfortune of reading the clearly delirious Jolly lamenting the income gap between rich and poor, before exclaiming with appropriate exclamation marks how few resources it would take to feed the world's poor, followed by the inevitable expression of dismay at the exponentional growth of the human population. Jolly then goes on to claim human populations only stabilize once there is ample food, water, shelter etc. Yes I'm sure once everyone is getting free food and water they'll lose all desire to reproduce in massive numbers. As a primatologist she loves demonstrating the parallels between primate behaviour and human behaviour, yet when it comes to 'socially progressive policies', throw all that out the window! Or maybe if chimps all had ample food and water they'd have a little group meeting and decide to have two child families and henceforth live forever in harmony with mother earth and their fellow animals.

Aside from the total inanity of the scattershot finale, the book is bloated by the author's lack of focus. While it can be impressive when someone demonstrates knowledge in many fields, it just becomes exasperating in this case, as the author sprints off on tangent after tangent. Eventually the book becomes a series of facts about differing topics, most irrelevant or uninteresting, with each being only tenuously related to its precursor. The novel's lack of cohesiveness, as well as it's lack of any real subject, makes for, at best, an unsatisfying read. At worst I'd say it's a colossal waste of time.
WOGY
Although I originally read this book for Professor Jolly's class, I have since recommended it to friends and family as an excellent, well rounded introduction into human evolution. It tries to examine, in an objective way, the degree to which natural selection has affected both physical and psychological human attributes.
Unlike writers such as EO Wilson who seem to argue that science has little if anything to learn from the humanities, Jolly believes that a comprehensive theory of human nature needs to draw on both the sciences and humanities to arrive at a synthetic view. I agree with her view that we cannot reduce humans to their genes, but nor can we ignore the role they play in our behavior.
The book is quite well written, and draws liberally on poetry, short stories, and politics as well as science to illustrate her points.
Ximathewi
Jolly has written one of the most elegant examinations of ourselves from an evolutionary perspective. She dialogues with feminists, biologists and others while crafting a wonderful foray into "sex and intelligence in human evolution" (the book's subtitle). She covers a heterogeneous set of topics, from why to cooperate to how humans give birth. In the spirit of Diamond's The Third Chimpanzee, she shows what excellent writing and a fine choice of subject matter can do when put together. This wide-ranging topical focus leaves the book without an oft-repeated thesis, or a strong idea to take away from reading it. But it does succeed in producing a book well worth recommending.
Qwne
Jolly's basic thesis is that the portrayal of evolution as "red in tooth and claw" is overblown. Species survival requires at least as much co-operation as competition. There are continuous compromises made in nature, each of which is as likely to aid in survival of the participants as elimination of opposition would. Jolly isn't attempting to replace competition as the root of evolution so much as temper it. The tempering force is sex. Always a subject of mystery among biologists, the origins of sex remain shrouded in mystery. Only the legacy of its inception becomes clear in hindsight. Sex provides genetic variety and a melange of social orders among animals. According to Jolly, sex generates interactions between individuals and groups that likely wouldn't have arisen otherwise.
Jolly argues that the interactions have led to various forms of altruism. In turn, the social "games" needed to maintain co-operation and altruism have generated higher levels of intelligence. Co-operation requires communication, further stimulating intelligence. This is most clearly manifest in the primates, particularly humans, of course. The rise of sociobiology [deemed "evolutionary psychology" by the timid] has added fresh pointers to our natural origins. Jolly is adept at equalizing the contending forces in this field and fending off its more strident critics. In one chapter, she expresses admiration for the growing number and influence of women scholars in the field. She then spends time gently dissecting a "deconstructionist" view of primatology, her own field. Her balanced views and reasonable approach are among the more admirable aspects of this book.
Her narrative style is light and conversational. There are even personal asides to keep the presentation from becoming rigid or pedantic. Regrettably, her desire to reach many readers and avoid axe-grinding led her down an unfortunate path. She sprinkles poetry samples throughout the text, many of these of doubtful value to the narrative. Her choice of illustrations is even worse. In charity, we might blame this on faulty editing. The topic is far too important to distract the reader with empty non-sequiturs. She imparts the importance well, but erodes it with these asides. The importance is maintained when you reach her References. This is an admirably complete source list and repays a careful look. It reflects Jolly's aim at reaching the general reader new to the topic. If you are just starting in this area, this book is an exceptional starting point.
- Review by stephen a. haines, Ottawa, Canada
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