• Le triomphe des lumières

    Steven Pinker

    • Arenes
    • 7 Novembre 2018

    Pourquoi nous avons raison de croire en la science, l'humanisme et le progrès.
    En 75 graphiques à couper le souffle et 17 chapitres, Steven Pinker montre que la santé, la prospérité, la sécurité, la paix, la connaissance et le bonheur sont en hausse, dans le monde entier. L'humanité n'a jamais vécu une période aussi paisible et heureuse.
    Ce progrès ne résulte pas d'une force cosmique mais d'un legs des Lumières. Non que Pinker plaide pour un retour à tous les aspects des Lumières, mais il en défend les idées fondatrices amplifiées depuis entre autres par Charles Darwin ou Karl Popper.

  • La part d'ange en nous

    Steven Pinker

    • Arenes
    • 4 Octobre 2017

    Histoire de la violence et de son déclin. L'épopée de l'humanité racontée par l'un des plus grands scientifiques mondiaux : un livre majeur qui redonne foi en notre espèce.

    Un auteur de premier plan : Steven Pinker est professeur de psychologie à l'Université Harvard. Ses recherches sur la cognition et la psychologie du langage sont reconnus et couronnés dans le monde entier.

    Un livre exceptionnel : Pourquoi ce déclin de la violence ? Selon Pinker, il est peu probable que la nature profonde de l'homme ait changé. Nous possédons toujours un penchant pour la violence (la part de nos « démons intérieurs ») dû à notre évolution, ainsi qu'« une part d'ange», qui fait contrepoids à cette violence. En revanche, notre environnement matériel et historique détermine quelle part prend le dessus.

  • ?Quelles sont les structures universelles du langage ? Quelles sont ses bases biologiques ? Que savent les bébés en naissant ? Existe-t-il des gènes de la grammaire ? Parviendra-t-on à recréer le langage humain par l'intelligence artificielle ? Quelle différence entre les humains et les animaux ? Pense-t-on en langage ou en image ? Existe-t-il une "langue mère" ? Pourquoi existe-t-il autant de langues différentes ? Et pourquoi est-il si difficile d'en apprendre une, à l'âge adulte ? Voici la somme la plus élaborée et la plus accessible sur le langage, par l'une des personnalités les plus brillantes du monde scientifique international. ?Steven Pinker a dirigé le Centre de neurosciences cognitives du Massachusetts Institute for Technology (MIT), pendant plus de vingt ans. Depuis 2003, il enseigne à l'Université Harvard. Il a également publié Comment fonctionne l'esprit et Comprendre la nature humaine.

    1 autre édition :

  • 'My new favourite book of all time' Bill Gates TOP TEN SUNDAY TIMES BESTSELLER Is modernity really failing? Or have we failed to appreciate progress and the ideals that make it possible? If you follow the headlines, the world in the 21st century appears to be sinking into chaos, hatred, and irrationality. Yet Steven Pinker shows that this is an illusion - a symptom of historical amnesia and statistical fallacies. If you follow the trendlines rather than the headlines, you discover that our lives have become longer, healthier, safer, happier, more peaceful, more stimulating and more prosperous - not just in the West, but worldwide. Such progress is no accident: it's the gift of a coherent and inspiring value system that many of us embrace without even realizing it. These are the values of the Enlightenment: of reason, science, humanism and progress. The challenges we face today are formidable, including inequality, climate change, Artificial Intelligence and nuclear weapons. But the way to deal with them is not to sink into despair or try to lurch back to a mythical idyllic past; it's to treat them as problems we can solve, as we have solved other problems in the past. In making the case for an Enlightenment newly recharged for the 21st century, Pinker shows how we can use our faculties of reason and sympathy to solve the problems that inevitably come with being products of evolution in an indifferent universe. We will never have a perfect world, but - defying the chorus of fatalism and reaction - we can continue to make it a better one.

  • Argues that humankind has become progressively less violent, over millenia and decades. This title shows that violence within and between societies - both murder and warfare - really has declined from prehistory to today. It also argues that modernity and its cultural institutions are actually making us better people.

  • Sense of style, the

    Steven Pinker

    Steven Pinker, the bestselling author of The Language Instinct , deploys his gift for explaining big ideas in The Sense of Style - an entertaining writing guide for the 21st century What is the secret of good prose? Does writing well even matter in an age of instant communication? Should we care? In this funny, thoughtful book about the modern art of writing, Steven Pinker shows us why we all need a sense of style. More than ever before, the currency of our social and cultural lives is the written word, from Twitter and texting to blogs, e-readers and old-fashioned books. But most style guides fail to prepare people for the challenges of writing in the 21st century, portraying it as a minefield of grievous errors rather than a form of pleasurable mastery. They fail to deal with an inescapable fact about language: it changes over time, adapted by millions of writers and speakers to their needs. Confusing changes in the world with moral decline, every generation believes the kids today are degrading society and taking language with it. A guide for the new millennium, writes Steven Pinker, has to be different. Drawing on the latest research in linguistics and cognitive science, Steven Pinker replaces the recycled dogma of previous style guides with reason and evidence. This thinking person's guide to good writing shows why style still matters: in communicating effectively, in enhancing the spread of ideas, in earning a reader's trust and, not least, in adding beauty to the world. Eye-opening, mind-expanding and cheerful, The Sense of Style shows that good style is part of what it means to be human.

    2 Autres éditions :

  • L'idée que chacun de nous se fait de la nature humaine affecte toute notre vie, de la manière dont nous élevons nos enfants à nos positions politiques.
    Les sciences permettent aujourd'hui de mieux la comprendre, de mieux cerner les structures innées qui régissent nos pensées et nos sentiments. Et pourtant, beaucoup redoutent que ces découvertes ne viennent justifier les inégalités sociales, empêcher le progrès, ruiner la notion même de liberté et de responsabilité. S'appuyant sur les données scientifiques les plus récentes, Steven Pinker dénonce les dogmes qui obscurcissent la vision de ce que nous sommes.
    Malgré sa popularité auprès de nombreux intellectuels au cours du XXe siècle, l'idée que tout en nous est acquis a peut-être fait plus de mal que de bien. Après tout, elle nie notre commune humanité et nous égare en matière d'éducation ou de politique. Non, l'idée de nature humaine n'est pas dangereuse !

  • What is the truth about human nature? Steven Pinker argues that our usual explanations of human behaviour - stated most clearly in the human sciences of psychology, ethics and politics - tend to deny what is now undeniable: the role of an inherited human nature.

  • Looks at one of the most fundamental of our species' distinguishing characteristics: the use of language. The author argues that our language abilities are part of our genetic inheritance, not a cultural artefact, and that language is a basic human instinct.

  • Qu'est-ce que l'esprit ? comment a-t-il évolué ? comment nous permet-il de voir, de penser, d'avoir des sentiments, d'interagir avec autrui, de jouer et d'éprouver des émotions esthétiques ?
    Steven pinker, l'un des phares des sciences cognitives, aborde, avec l'humour et l'inventivité qui ont fait sa célébrité, ces problèmes théoriques ambitieux à travers une foule de questions quotidiennes : pourquoi sommes-nous naturellement séduits par un visage maquillé ? pourquoi l'idée de manger des vers nous dégoûte-t-elle ? pourquoi les fous aussi tombent-ils amoureux ? pourquoi aimons-nous la peinture et la musique ? la synthèse la plus puissante et la plus accessible à ce jour sur ce que les neurosciences peuvent nous dire aujourd'hui de nous-mêmes.

  • RATIONALITY - WHAT IT IS, WHY IT''S SCARCE, AND HOW TO GET MORE Nouv.

  • Analyses what words actually mean and how we use them, and reveals what this can tell us about ourselves. This book shows how we use space and motion as metaphors for more abstract ideas, and uncovers the deeper structures of human thought that have been shaped by evolutionary history. It also explores the emotional impact of language.

  • In The Blank Slate, Steven Pinker, one of the world's leading experts on language and the mind, explores the idea of human nature and its moral, emotional, and political colorings. With characteristic wit, lucidity, and insight, Pinker argues that the dogma that the mind has no innate traits-a doctrine held by many intellectuals during the past century-denies our common humanity and our individual preferences, replaces objective analyses of social problems with feel-good slogans, and distorts our understanding of politics, violence, parenting, and the arts. Injecting calm and rationality into debates that are notorious for ax-grinding and mud-slinging, Pinker shows the importance of an honest acknowledgment of human nature based on science and common sense.

  • Why do so many swear words involve sex, bodily functions and religion? Why are some words rude and others aren't? Why can launching into expletives be so shocking - and sometimes so amusing?

    Steven Pinker takes us on a fascinating and funny journey through the world of profanities, taken from his bestselling The Stuff of Thought, to show us why we swear (whatever our language or culture), how taboos change and how we use obscenities in different ways. You'll discover that in Québecois French the expression 'Tabernacle' is outrageous, that the Middle Ages were littered with four-letter words, that 'scumbag' has a very unsavoury origin and that in a certain Aboriginal language every word is filthy when spoken in front of your mother-in-law.

    Covering everything from free speech to Tourette's, from pottymouthed celebrities to poetry, this book reveals what swearing tells us about how our minds work. (It's also a bloody good read).

  • 'Dazzling...Pinker's big idea is that language is an instinct...as innate to us as flying is to geese...Words can hardly do justice to the superlative range and liveliness of Pinker's investigations' - Independent 'A marvellously readable book...illuminates every facet of human language: its biological origin, its uniqueness to humanity, it acquisition by children, its grammatical structure, the production and perception of speech, the pathology of language disorders and the unstoppable evolution of languages and dialects' - Nature

  • Bad writing can't be blamed on the Internet, or on 'the kids today'. Good writing has always been hard: a performance requiring pretense, empathy, and a drive for coherence. In The Sense of Style, cognitive scientist and linguist Steven Pinker uses the latest scientific insights to bring us a style and usage guide for the 21st century. What do skilful writers know about the link between syntax and ideas? How can we overcome the Curse of Knowledge, the difficulty in imagining what it's like not to know something we do? And can we distinguish the myths and superstitions from rules that enhance clarity and grace? As Pinker shows, everyone can improve their mastery of writing and their appreciation of the art (yes, 'their').

  • -Shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize 2012 This acclaimed book by Steven Pinker, author of The Language Instinct and The Blank Slate, argues that, contrary to popular belief, humankind has become progressively less violent, over millenia and decades. Can violence really have declined? The images of conflict we see daily on our screens from around the world suggest this is an almost obscene claim to be making. Extraordinarily, however, Steven Pinker shows violence within and between societies - both murder and warfare - really has declined from prehistory to today. We are much less likely to die at someone else's hands than ever before. Even the horrific carnage of the last century, when compared to the dangers of pre-state societies, is part of this trend. Debunking both the idea of the 'noble savage' and an over-simplistic Hobbesian notion of a 'nasty, brutish and short' life, Steven Pinker argues that modernity and its cultural institutions are actually making us better people.

    'One of the most important books I've read - not just this year, but ever ... For me, what's most important about The Better Angels of Our Nature are its insights into how to help achieve positive outcomes. How can we encourage a less violent, more just society, particularly for the poor? Steven Pinker shows us ways we can make those positive trajectories a little more likely. That's a contribution, not just to historical scholarship, but to the world' Bill Gates 'Brilliant, mind-altering ... Everyone should read this astonishing book' David Runciman, Guardian 'A supremely important book. To have command of so much research, spread across so many different fields, is a masterly achievement. Pinker convincingly demonstrates that there has been a dramatic decline in violence, and he is persuasive about the causes of that decline' Peter Singer, New York Times '[A] sweeping new review of the history of human violence...[Pinker has] the kind of academic superbrain that can translate otherwise impenetrable statistics into a meaningful narrative of human behaviour...impeccable scholarship' Tony Allen-Mills, Sunday Times 'Written in Pinker's distinctively entertaining and clear personal style...a marvellous synthesis of science, history and storytelling' Clive Cookson, Financial Times 'Pinker's scholarhsip is astounding...flawless...masterful' Joanna Bourke, The Times Steven Pinker is the Johnstone Family Professor in the Department of Psychology at Harvard University. Until 2003, he taught in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at MIT. He conducts research on language and cognition, writes for publications such as The New York Times, Time and Slate, and is the author of six books, including The Language Instinct, How the Mind Works, The Blank Slate and The Stuff of Thought.

  • The Stuff of Thought is an exhilarating work of non-fiction. Surprising, thought-provoking and incredibly enjoyable, there is no other book like it - Steven Pinker will revolutionise the way you think about language. He analyses what words actually mean and how we use them, and he reveals what this can tell us about ourselves. He shows how we use space and motion as metaphors for more abstract ideas, and uncovers the deeper structures of human thought that have been shaped by evolutionary history. He also explores the emotional impact of language, from names to swear words, and shows us the full power that it can have over us. And, with this book, he also shows just how stimulating and entertaining language can be.

  • "My new favorite book of all time." --Bill Gates
    "A terrific book...[Pinker] recounts the progress across a broad array of metrics, from health to wars, the environment to happiness, equal rights to quality of life." --The New York Times
    The follow-up to Pinker's groundbreaking The Better Angels of Our Nature presents the big picture of human progress: people are living longer, healthier, freer, and happier lives, and while our problems are formidable, the solutions lie in the Enlightenment ideal of using reason and science.
    Is the world really falling apart? Is the ideal of progress obsolete? In this elegant assessment of the human condition in the third millennium, cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker urges us to step back from the gory headlines and prophecies of doom, which play to our psychological biases. Instead, follow the data: In seventy-five jaw-dropping graphs, Pinker shows that life, health, prosperity, safety, peace, knowledge, and happiness are on the rise, not just in the West, but worldwide. This progress is not the result of some cosmic force. It is a gift of the Enlightenment: the conviction that reason and science can enhance human flourishing.
    Far from being a naïve hope, the Enlightenment, we now know, has worked. But more than ever, it needs a vigorous defense. The Enlightenment project swims against currents of human nature--tribalism, authoritarianism, demonization, magical thinking--which demagogues are all too willing to exploit. Many commentators, committed to political, religious, or romantic ideologies, fight a rearguard action against it. The result is a corrosive fatalism and a willingness to wreck the precious institutions of liberal democracy and global cooperation.
    With intellectual depth and literary flair, Enlightenment Now makes the case for reason, science, and humanism: the ideals we need to confront our problems and continue our progress.

  • 'My new favourite book of all time' Bill Gates Is modernity really failing? Or have we failed to appreciate progress and the ideals that make it possible? If you follow the headlines, the world in the 21st century appears to be sinking into chaos, hatred, and irrationality. Yet Steven Pinker shows that this is an illusion - a symptom of historical amnesia and statistical fallacies. If you follow the trendlines rather than the headlines, you discover that our lives have become longer, healthier, safer, happier, more peaceful, more stimulating and more prosperous - not just in the West, but worldwide. Such progress is no accident: it's the gift of a coherent and inspiring value system that many of us embrace without even realizing it. These are the values of the Enlightenment: of reason, science, humanism and progress.The challenges we face today are formidable, including inequality, climate change, Artificial Intelligence and nuclear weapons. But the way to deal with them is not to sink into despair or try to lurch back to a mythical idyllic past; it's to treat them as problems we can solve, as we have solved other problems in the past. In making the case for an Enlightenment newly recharged for the 21st century, Pinker shows how we can use our faculties of reason and sympathy to solve the problems that inevitably come with being products of evolution in an indifferent universe. We will never have a perfect world, but - defying the chorus of fatalism and reaction - we can continue to make it a better one.

  • ENLIGHTENMENT NOW

    Steven Pinker

    THE CASE FOR REASON SCIENCE HUMANISM AND PROGRESS TSD- «THE BETTER ANGELS OF OUR NATURE» ABOUT HUMAN PROGRESS THE FOLLOW-UP TO PINKER'S PATHBREAKING THE BETTER ANGELS OF OUR NATURE ARGUES THAT DESPITE THE RAMPANT PESSIMISM ABOUT THE STATE OF THE WORLD TODAY, THE FACTS PROVE THAT WE ARE ON A SIGNIFICANT PATH UPWARD AND CAN CONTINUE THAT WAY, BUT ONLY IF WE UNDERSTAND THE IDEALS (AND EMBRACE THE TOOLS) THAT HAVE CREATED THAT PROGRESS. A NECESSARY COUNTER TO THE CURRENT GOSPEL OF DOOM.

    Are things really going to hell in a handbasket? In this elegant and urgent assessment of the human condition in the third millennium,cognitive scientist and public intellectual Steven Pinker proves that--despite the robust market for prophecies of woe--we're living longer, healthier, safer, richer, freer, happier, and more meaningful lives worldwide. The problems we face are formidable, but we have the tools to solve them. Our best days are, indeed, still ahead of us.

    Progress is not inevitable, or the result of some mysterious force, he argues; it is the fruit of a system of beliefs and values that many of us embrace without even realizing it. These are the ideals of the Enlightenment: the conviction that we can use reason and science to enhance human flourishing. Far from being a naïve dream, the Enlightenment, we now know, has worked. Pinker shows in more than sixty jaw-dropping graphs that humanity is far better off than it was decades and centuries ago.

  • Looks at one of the most fundamental of our species' distinguishing characteristics: the use of language. The author argues that our language abilities are part of our genetic inheritance, not a cultural artefact, and that language is a basic human instinct.

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