A century and a half after the publication of Origin of Species, evolutionary thinking has expanded beyond the field of biology to include virtually all human related subjects anthropology, archeology, psychology, economics, religion, morality, politics, culture, and art Now a distinguished scholar offers the first comprehensive account of the evolutionary origins of art and storytelling Brian Boyd explains why we tell stories, how our minds are shaped to understand them, and what difference an evolutionary understanding of human nature makes to stories we love Art is a specifically human adaptation, Boyd argues It offers tangible advantages for human survival, and it derives from play, itself an adaptation widespread among intelligent animals More particularly, our fondness for storytelling has sharpened social cognition, encouraged cooperation, and fostered creativity After considering art as adaptation, Boyd examines Homer s Odyssey and Dr Seuss s Horton Hears a Who demonstrating how an evolutionary lens can offer new understanding and appreciation of specific works What triggers our emotional engagement with these works What patterns facilitate our responses The need to hold an audience s attention, Boyd underscores, is the fundamental problem facing all storytellers Enduring artists arrive at solutions that appeal to cognitive universals an insight out of step with contemporary criticism, which obscures both the individual and universal Published for the bicentenary of Darwin s birth and the th anniversary of the publication of Origin of Species, Boyd s study embraces a Darwinian view of human nature and art, and offers a credo for a new humanism I bought this book for my PhD research It didn t disappointed me at all.I recommend it to anyone interested in storytelling and narrative. It was delivered very quick considering it was dispatched from UK Thoroughly enjoyed and the read and insight to the world of football. A very thought provoking book that drives home a particular argument for why we tell stories and uses the Odyessy the mother of all literature to illustrate why we tell stories It s informed my thinking on this subject.Not a book I would read again and again for pleasure, since it is rather thick and I paid so much attention the first reading, but it s a pleasure to read a book by a Homeric scholar.This book is not really about evolution, despite its title, although it does look at how we evolved to think, and why stories seem to be necessary for our cognition, and thus survival.The lens is backwards, through literature, rather than through science A good and enjoyable choice by a careful and skilled scholar who believes, deeply, that stories make us human.
- Tapa dura
- On the Origin of Stories: Evolution, Cognition, and Fiction
- Brian Boyd
- 10 April 2019 Brian Boyd