Do you remember the verse about the little girl with the curl? "When she was good, she was very, very good...." The question many people have is "why?" Is goodness innate, or learned? In this hour of To the Best of Our Knowledge, evolution rewards the virtuous. Also, when "dissing" is all-too-common, how to win respect.
Zoologist and science journalist Matt Ridley tells Steve Paulson about the biological basis for good behavior. He says we define virtue as pro-social behavior. Ridley's book is "The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation." Also, we hear a vox-pop on what makes a good person.SEGMENT 2:
Biologist David Sloan Wilson and philosopher Elliot Sober are the co-authors of "Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior." They tell Judith Strasser that "psychological egotism" - the notion that people act out of self interest all the time - does not explain all of human behavior, and give examples of purely altruistic acts.SEGMENT 3:
Eduardo Mendieta, a naturalized American, is the co- editor (with David Batstone) of a collection of essays called "The Good Citizen." He talks with Judith Strasser about the obligations of living in community with others and the advantages of citizenship. Also, more vox-pop on being good. And, sociologist Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot tells Jim Fleming that social problems come from a lack of respect. She tells him about some of the people in her book - "Respect: An Exploration." They're professionals who are remarkable for the degree of respect they show to the less powerful, less privileged people they work with.Cassette copies are available at 1-800-747-7444. Ask for program number 99-05-09-C.
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