News in Brain and Behavioural Sciences
The Weekly Edition of
The Human Nature Daily Review
Volume 1: Issue 12 - 5th May, 2001

If you no longer wish to receive this newsletter send a blank email to To subscribe send a blank email to For daily news visit The Human Nature Daily Review.

| SEARCH KEY: A = Author | S = Subject | G = Group | W = Web | E = Email | B = Books |

New Books

News and Views Papers and Commentary Reviews and Discussion

SUBSCRIBE to our weekly newsletter on brain, behaviour, and evolution by clicking here. You are welcome to join our discussions on evolution or mental health.

US Books
Search Now:
In Association with

UK Books
Search Now:
In Association with

April 2001

March 2001

February 2001

 28th April, 14th April, 7th April, 31st March, 24th March, 17th March, 10th March, 3rd March, 24th February, 17th February

Genes on the Couch: Explorations in Evolutionary Psychotherapy by Paul Gilbert (Editor), Kent G. Bailey (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Evolutionists: The Struggle for Darwin's Soul by Richard Morris [read an excerpt]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Everyday Irrationality: How pseudo-scientists, lunatics, and the rest of us systematically fail to think rationally by Robyn Dawes
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Other Side of Eden: Hunters, Farmers and the Shaping of the World by Hugh Brody [excerpt]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Mind in Everyday Life and Cognitive Science by Sunny Y. Auyang
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Signs of Life: How Complexity Pervades Biology by Ricard V. Solé, Brian Goodwin [excerpt]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Sex and Longevity: Sexuality, Gender, Reproduction, Parenthood (Research and Perspectives in Longevity) by Jean-Marie Robine (Editor), T. B. L. Kirkwood (Editor), M. Allard (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Tree of Origin: What Primate Behavior Can Tell Us About Human Social Evolution by Frans B. M. De Waal (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Cells and Surveys: Should Biological Measures Be Included in Social Science Research? by Caleb Ellicott Finch (Editor), James W. Vaupel (Editor), Kevin Kinsella. [Full text]
Amazon US

Tempo and Mode in Evolution: Genetics and Paleontology 50 Years After Simpson by Francisco J. Ayala (Editor), Walter Fitch (Editor). [Full text]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

From Neurons to Neighborhoods: The Science of Early Childhood Development by Jack P. Shonkoff (Editor), Deborah Phillips (Editor). [Full text]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Doing Without Adam and Eve: Sociobiology and Original Sin (Theology and the Sciences Series) by Patricia A. Williams [comment]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Primate Taxonomy (Smithsonian Series in Comparative Evolutionary Biology) by Colin P. Groves
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Mechanization of the Mind: On the Origins of Cognitive Science by Jean-Pierre Dupuy, Translated by M. B. DeBevoise
Amazon US
| Amazon UK

Synaesthesia: The Strangest Thing by John Harrison.
Amazon - US | OUP

Darwinizing Culture: The Status of Memetics as a Science, edited by Robert Aunger
Amazon US | Amazon UK
OUP | Contents and links

Investigations by Stuart Kauffman. [Interviews and essays]
Amazon US
| Amazon UK

  Prophets, Cults and Madness by Anthony Stevens and John Price
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Great Psychotherapy Debate: Models, Methods, and Findings
by Bruce E. Wampold
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Fundamentals of an Integrated Model of Psychotherapy by Hector Fernandez-Alvarez, Anthony L. Labruzza (Translator), Hector Fernandez Alvarez
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Group Consensus and Minority Influence: Implications for Innovation by Nanne De Vries (Editor), Carsten K. De Dreu (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Cycles of Contingency: Developmental Systems and Evolution (Life and Mind: Philosophical Issues in Biology and Psychology) by Susan Oyama (Editor), Paul E. Griffiths (Editor), Russell D. Gray (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Comprehensive Textbook of Suicidology by Ronald W. Maris, Alan L. Berman, Morton M. Silverman
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Algebraic Mind: Integrating Connectionism and Cognitive Science (Learning, Development, and Conceptual Change) by Gary F. Marcus
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Treatment of Child Abuse: Common Ground for Mental Health, Medical, and Legal Practitioners edited by Robert M. Reece
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Abduction, Reason, and Science: Processes of Discovery and Explanation by Lorenzo Magnani
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Paranoid Parenting by Frank Furedi
Amazon UK

Clever As a Fox: Animal Intelligence And What It Can Teach Us About Ourselves
by Sonja I. Yoerg
Amazon US | Amazon UK

The Foundations of Cognitive Science by Joao Branquinho (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Exiting Nirvana: My Daughter's Life with Autism by Clara Claiborne Park
Amazon US | Amazon UK
| Read the first chapter |

Abraham Lincoln's DNA and Other Adventures in Genetics by Philip R. Reilly
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Helping People with Eating Disorders: A Clinical Guide to Assessment and Treatment by Robert L. Palmer
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Hominoid Evolution and Climatic Change in Europe: Phylogeny of the Neogene Hominoid Primates of Eurasia Louis de Bonis (Editor), George D. Koufos (Editor), Peter Andrews (Editor)
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Ritalin Nation: Rapid-Fire Culture and the Transformation of Human Consciousness by Richard Degrandpre
Amazon US | Amazon UK

A Visitor Within: The Science of Pregnancy by David Bainbridge
 Amazon UK

Comparative psychology - Pigeons have a keen eye for art, according to a Japanese scientist. Shigeru Watanabe, a Keio University professor of cognitive science, has managed to get pigeons to recognize whether a painting is a van Gogh or a Chagall — even if they had never seen it before. [more]

SEARCH: This site (1200+ pages), - brain, behaviour and evolution (12,000+ pages), - mental health and psychiatry (1600+ pages).

Human genome - Later this month the American Museum of Natural History will unveil "The Genomic Revolution," an exhibition designed to "get the genetic vocabulary out to people," in the words of Rob DeSalle, a director of the museum's molecular lab and the exhibition's curator. [more]

Genetics - Researchers in the US have created children with a genetic modification which could be passed on to future generations - so-called germline engineering. BBC News Online, New York Times, The Guardian, The Telegraph.

Racism - A state legislature casts Darwin in the same league as Hitler. A science educator says it's going to be a rough year for evolutionists. [more] Earlier reports: Fox News, The Advocate Online.

Brain and mouth disease - Fat has become the Devil's weapon. And people who pursue a monogamous relationship with low-fat carbs and steamed vegetables will regard a date with a steak as equivalent to an act of flamboyant multi-partner adultery. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Poverty and biodiversity - The worldwide loss of biodiversity is near catastrophe, and the US is largely to blame, according to Harvard University evolutionary biologist Edward O. Wilson. [more]

In Association with

Creationism - Robert Matthews appears to have been duped by creationist propaganda. The Telegraph. Background: Nature, HMS Beagle, Salon, David E. Thomas and  M. Kim Johnson, Ian Pitchford, The Wedge Strategy, James Still.

Statistics - Joel Best looks at some of the most dubious statistics ever produced. [more]

Sexual selection - Roger Highfield reports on Geoffrey Miller's The Mating Mind. [more]
[Search: S | G | W | B]

Genetics - Peggy Curran wonders 'What's next in this era of genetic engineering and eugenics?' [more]

Neuroscience - Visit the brain museum. [more] and [more]

Courtship - Daniel Cere argues that courtship "no longer occupies a vital place within contemporary American culture; the word itself now seems quaint and outdated". [more]

Sociology - Has there been a shift in our culture toward an ethos of radical individualism and away from one in which the pervasiveness of social organizations encouraged social connectedness and civic engagement? [more]

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder - A first-of-its-kind study indicates that stimulant medication, combined with behavioral interventions, improves academic achievement in adolescents with ADHD. [more]

Child development - Geniuses are made, not born — or so parents are told. But can we really train baby brains, and should we try? [more]

Racism - Charles Darwin, the father of evolution, supported racist ideologies that Louisiana's Legislature should reject, a state House committee decided Tuesday in a resolution educators said would open the state to ridicule. [more], Fox News, The Advocate Online.

Obituary - Dr. Meyer Friedman, the cardiologist who developed the theory that uptight people - what he called "Type A" personalities - are more likely to suffer from heart attacks, has died at age 90. [more]

In Association with

Longevity - Juanita Ollman is a survivor, and researchers want to know her secrets and the secrets of others like her. [more]

Human Genome - Some academic biologists are  contending that Celera used a method that failed and in fact relied on the academic consortium's method to assemble its own version of the genome. [more]

Theory of mind - A recent series of studies led by Paul Bloom indicates that children use their theory of mind understanding to label objects that other people create, as well as their own creations. [more] and [bibliography]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Longevity - New anti-ageing treatments are on the horizon, thanks to research by colleagues of this year's BBC Reith lecturer, Tom Kirkwood. [more], BBC News Online.
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Therapy - You are taught, when you train to be a psychiatrist, not to give advice. Instead, you must explore with patients their motives, needs and wishes and let them arrive at their own conclusions. Thus goes the professional credo. [more]

In Association with

Human evolution - Humans and chimpanzees are more closely related to each other than either are to gorillas. BioMedNet, Current Biology.
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

History - Hardy Jackson,  professor of history at Jacksonville State University, detects the hand of Darwin in an unlikely place - the Alabama Constitution of 1901. [more]

Domestication - DNA is revealing that taming animals was not a simple process. [more]

Evolution of sexuality - Monogamy is, according to last week's New Scientist, a consequence of the human female's capacity for deception: unlike most animals, women cunningly offer sex all the time so their lovers cannot tell when they are wasting valuable sperm and move on to a new partner. [more] Earlier reports BBC News Online, New Scientist, Animal Behaviour.
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Tell your friends and colleagues about The Human Nature Daily Review

Child development - Pediatricians are seeing more babies who never crawl, going directly from sitting to toddling. Researchers say this may be a real change in infant development. [more] and [more]

Sociology - Young American men and women are spectacularly ignorant about one another's inner lives. [more]

SEARCH: This site (1200+ pages), - brain, behaviour and evolution (12,000+ pages), - mental health and psychiatry (1600+ pages).

Statistics - Bayesianism is an extraordinarily powerful tool that permits scientists to keep new information in the proper perspective. [more]

Neuroscience - Salk Institute scientists have isolated cells from the brains of human cadavers that can grow, divide and form specialized classes of brain cells. Their findings indicate that postmortem tissue may be a potential source of multipotent stem cells, with a variety of uses and applications. [more] and [more]
[Search: A | S | W]

Archaeology - Canadian scientists have uncovered the first unequivocal evidence that prehistoric North Americans hunted and butchered now-extinct pony-sized horses. The discovery adds weight to the theory that overhunting may have played a significant role in the extinction of ancient horses on the continent around 10,000 years ago. [more]

Menarche - Any decrease in average menarcheal age during the past 20-30 years has been small (almost certainly less than six months), particularly when compared with the reduction of a year or more that occurred in many European countries between the late 19th and mid 20th centuries. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Neuroscience - Neurons in the primary visual cortex are quick-change artists. Neurons located in certain places have the ability to take on briefly the function of neighboring cells and then switch back to their own jobs, said Valentin Dragoi, a postdoctoral fellow at MIT's Center for Learning and Memory. [more] and [more]
[Search: A | S | W]

Weight loss - Christopher Adams has tricked mice into losing weight. [more]

Neuroscience - Ken Catania has found a striking functional parallel between the wiring of the naked rat mole's nose star and the way that the eye is organized in sighted animals. [more]
[Search: A | S | W]

Language - The left Rolandic operculum, caudally adjacent to Broca's area, is involved in both sentence-level and local (phrase-level) syntactic encoding during speaking. [more]
[Search: A | S | W]

Hormones - By reconstructing a DNA sequence that existed more than 450 million years ago, Joe Thornton has revealed how new hormones emerged during evolution, concluding that the female hormone estrogen is the most ancient of all steroid hormones -- but that its role in differentiating the sexes from each other developed much later. UniSci, Proceedings of the National Academy.
[Search: A | S | W | B]

Evolution - Female flycatchers have strategies to avoid the costs of mating with males of other species. [more], [more] and [more]

Genetics - A few dozen genes are known on the human Y chromosome. The completion of the human genome sequence will allow identification of the remaining loci, which should shed further light on the function and evolution of this peculiar chromosome. [more]

Biological determinism - School-based learning of genetics and contemporary discourses on popular genetics are likely to promote a deterministic interpretation. [more]

Evolutionary psychology - Although evolutionary psychology is typically associated with "selfish gene theory," numerous other approaches to the study of mind and behavior provide a wealth of concepts for theorizing about psychology, culture, and development. [more] and [more]

Genetics - A new class of genes necessary for the normal development of the earliest stages of embryonic development in animals have been discovered by Raffi V. Aroian and colleagues. Eurekalert, Developmental Biology.

Economics - Evolutionary psychology offers a challenge to the rationality assumption, since it provides us with a theory of mistakes. [more]

Behavioural medicine - A new study shows that children of parents with low education and low-status jobs are more likely to perceive ambiguous situations as threatening and thereby place added stress on their hearts. [more]

Premenstrual stress - Unlike most women, those who experience an especially debilitating form of premenstrual syndrome -- a medical condition called premenstrual dysphoric disorder -- show abnormal responses to stress. [more]

Stress - Men appear to become more sensitive to the stimulating effects of corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) as they age. [more]

Emotion - Kesler and colleagues report on the neural substrates of facial emotion processing. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Cognitive brain research - Grachev and Apkarian have found age-differential patterns of chemical connectivity across the studied brain regions for most chemical types. The results provide evidence that normal aging is associated with reorganization of chemical network of the human brain. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Neuroscience - A review of research into the cellular neurobiology of depression. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Medical research - Contrary to longstanding public perception, women do not appear to be under represented or understudied in scientific clinical research trials. Eurekalert, Statistics in Medicine.

Biology - Ubiquitin appears to be central to sperm quality control. Nature Science Update, Journal of Cell Science.

Depression - Absenteeism due to health problems was twice as high for employees with depressive symptoms compared to those without depressive symptoms. Eurekalert, American Journal of Psychiatry.

Psychiatry -  It has long been known that a direct link exists between alcohol and depression. Now data shows that a gene or genes on chromosome 1 may predispose some individuals to alcoholism and others to depression. [more] American Journal of Psychiatry.

Comparative psychology - Bottlenose dolphins can recognize themselves in a mirror, an advanced intellectual ability observed previously only in humans and apes. Reuters, AP, Nando Times, New York Times, New Scientist, The Times, The Telegraph, Proceedings of the National Academy.
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Sex education - Jacqueline Voss and colleagues believe that sexuality education does not lead to an increase in sexual activity. [more]

Suicide - Suicide among the teenage male population has reached "crisis" point with a 72% increase in reported cases over 20 years. BBC News Online

Evolution of courtship - Leonida Fusani and colleagues discover the role of aromatase in courtship behaviour. [more] [abstract]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Applied psychology - John Schaubroeck and colleagues have produced the first empirical study showing link between job stress, job control and susceptibility to respiratory infections. [more]
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Genetics - A single gene influences the social behaviour of worms. [more] and [more]
[Search: A | S | W | B]

High-risk behaviour - Youths with tattoos are much more likely than their peers to smoke cigarettes or marijuana, go on drinking binges, have premarital sex, get into serious fights, join gangs, skip school and get poor grades, according to Timothy Roberts and co-workers. [more]
[Search: W | B]

Violence - A study by Robert H. DuRant and colleagues shows that the incidence of date fighting and other violence increases when the exposure to violence increases. [more] BBC News Online
[Search: A | S | G | W | B]

Behavioral and Brain Sciences - A call for commentators on A sensorimotor account of vision and visual consciousness by J. Kevin O'Regan and Alva Noe. [more]

Monogamy - In a new book called The Myth of Monogamy, a husband-wife scientific team contends that monogamy among animals, and humans in particular, may be the exception rather than the rule. [more] [interview] [first chapter]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Call for papers - Learning and Individual Differences is soliciting papers for a special issue examining the evolutionary underpinnings of educational psychology. [more]

Conference - Social life and communication: an element of understanding in the evolution of language? [more]

Neuroscience - Howard Gardner reviews What makes us think? by Jean-Pierre Changeux and Paul Ricoeur. [more]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Psychiatry - Theodore B. Feldman reviews Stalkers and Their Victims by Paul E. Mullen, Michele Pathé, and Rosemary Purcell. [more]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Medicine - Rosemarie Conigliaro reviews Field Guide to the Difficult Patient Interview by Frederic W. Platt and Geoffrey H. Gordon. [more]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Anthropology - Perspectives on Patrick Tierney's Darkness in El Dorado. [more]

Reviews and Debates at the New York Review of Books

Mar 9, 2000 Jerome Bruner: Tot Thought
The Scientist in the Crib: Minds, Brains, and How Children Learn by Alison Gopnik, Andrew N. Meltzoff, and Patricia K. Kuhl
The Myth of the First Three Years: A New Understanding of Early Brain Development and Lifelong Learning by John T. Bruer

Oct 7, 1999 Fiona MacCarthy: Skin Deep
Making the Body Beautiful: A Cultural History of Aesthetic Surgery by Sander L. Gilman
Survival of the Prettiest: The Science of Beauty by Nancy Etcoff

Jun 24, 1999 Helen Epstein: The Fly in the DNA
Time, Love, Memory: A Great Biologist and His Quest for the Origins of Behavior by Jonathan Weiner

Jun 10, 1999 Colin McGinn: Can We Ever Understand Consciousness?
Mind, Language, and Society: Philosophy in the Real World by John R. Searle
On the Contrary: Critical Essays, 1987-1997 by Paul M. Churchland and Patricia S. Churchland

May 6, 1999 Alison Gopnik: Small Wonders
The Disciplined Mind: What All Students Should Understand by Howard Gardner

Nov 19, 1998 Bernard Williams: The End of Explanation?
The Last Word by Thomas Nagel

 Nov 5, 1998 Howard Gardner: Do Parents Count?
The Nurture Assumption: Why Children Turn Out the Way They Do by Judith Rich Harris and with a foreword by Steven Pinker

Oct 22, 1998 Stephen Jay Gould: The Man Who Invented Natural History
Buffon by Jacques Roger and translated by Sarah Lucille Bonnefoi

Oct 22, 1998 R. C. Lewontin: Survival of the Nicest?
Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior by Elliott Sober and David Sloan Wilson

Jul 16, 1998 Helen Epstein: Life & Death on the Social Ladder
Unhealthy Societies: The Afflictions of Inequality by Richard G. Wilkinson
Healthy Work: Stress, Productivity, and the Reconstruction of Working Life by Robert Karasek and Töres Theorell
Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers: A Guide to Stress, Stress-Related Diseases, and Coping by Robert M. Sapolsky
The Power of Clan: The Influence of Human Relationships on Heart Disease by Stewart Wolf and John G. Bruhn

Jul 16, 1998 Diane Johnson: My Blue Heaven
Raising Baby by the Book: The Education of American Mothers by Julia Grant
Dr. Spock: An American Life by Thomas Maier
Baby and Child Care Seventh edition, Benjamin Spock, and Steven Parker
Maybe One: A Personal and Environmental Argument for Single-Child Families by Bill McKibben
Family Man by Calvin Trillin
Born That Way: Genes, Behavior, Personality by William Wright
The War Against Parents: What We Can Do for America's Beleaguered Moms and Dads by Sylvia Ann Hewlett and Cornel West
Our Babies, Ourselves: How Biology and Culture Shape the Way We Parent by Meredith F. Small

May 28, 1998 Steven Mithen: 'The Prehistory of the Mind': An Exchange

Apr 23, 1998 Steve Jones: In the Genetic Toyshop
Clone: The Road to Dolly and the Path Ahead by Gina Kolata
The Biotech Century: Harnessing the Gene and remaking the World by Jeremy Rifkin
Consilience: The Unity of Knowledge by Edward O. Wilson

Apr 9, 1998 Frank J. Sulloway: Darwinian Virtues
The Origins of Virtue: Human Instincts and the Evolution of Cooperation by Matt Ridley

Nov 6, 1997 Steve Jones: The Set Within the Skull
How the Mind Works by Steven Pinker

Oct 9, 1997 Howard Gardner: Thinking About Thinking
The Prehistory of the Mind: The Cognitive Origins of Art, Religion and Science by Steven Mithen

Oct 9, 1997 Steven Pinker: Evolutionary Psychology: An Exchange

Aug 14, 1997 Daniel C. Dennett: 'Darwinian Fundamentalism': An Exchange

Jul 17, 1997 Steve Jones: Go Milk a Fruit Bat!
Why Is Sex Fun? The Evolution of Human Sexuality by Jared Diamond

Jun 26, 1997 Jared Diamond: 'GUNS, GERMS, AND STEEL'

Jun 26, 1997 Stephen Jay Gould: Evolution: The Pleasures of Pluralism

Jun 12, 1997 Stephen Jay Gould: Darwinian Fundamentalism

Feb 6, 1997 Steve Jones: Crooked Bones
Unraveling Piltdown: The Science Fraud of the Century and Its Solution by John Evangelist Walsh

Nov 14, 1996 Jared Diamond: The Roots of Radicalism
Born to Rebel: Birth Order, Family Dynamics, and Creative Lives by Frank J. Sulloway

May 23, 1996 Richard Lewontin: In the Blood

Apr 4, 1996 Stephen Jay Gould: Why Darwin?
Charles Darwin: Voyaging by Janet Browne

Feb 29, 1996 R. C. Lewontin: The Last of the Nasties?
The Lost World by Michael Crichton

Science and religion - Druin Burch reviews Rocks of Ages: Science and Religion in the Fullness of Life by Stephen J. Gould. [more], [excerpt]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Biofeedback - John Langone discusses A Symphony in the Brain: The Evolution of the New Brain Wave Biofeedback by Jim Robbins. [more]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

Biological history - Joyce Appleby reviews Eve's Seed: Biology, the Sexes and the Course of History By Robert S. McElvaine. [more], [read a chapter]
Amazon US | Amazon UK

History - Lisa Jardine reviews Annie's Box: Charles Darwin, His Daughter and Human Evolution by Randal Keynes. [more] [first chapter]
 Amazon UK

History - Robin McKie reviews Annie's Box: Charles Darwin, His Daughter and Human Evolution by Randal Keynes. [more] [first chapter]
 Amazon UK

Schizophrenia - Vithal C. Nadkarni reviews The Madness of Adam and Eve: How Schizophrenia Shaped Humanity by David Horrobin. [more]
Amazon UK