James Costa: Darwin, Wallace, The Origin of Species, and The Descent of Man

The Dissenter | 3 September 2021 | 1h 08m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with James Costa touching on Wallace and Darwin’s Origin of Species, but mainly focussed on The Descent of Man. Discusses where Darwin’s ideas came from, and in what ways they differ from Wallace’s; sexual selection; our primate origins; the evolutionary origins of our mental faculties; race and sex differences; cultural evolution; (cultural) group selection; Darwin as a precursor of evolutionary psychology; eusocial insects, and group selection.

Nichola Raihani – The Social Instinct: How Cooperation Shaped the World

The Dissenter | 2 September 2021 | 1h 00m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Nichola Raihani about her book The Social Instinct: How Cooperation Shaped the World. Discusses mechanisms used to explain the evolution of cooperation – kin selection, reciprocal altruism, and group selection; the role of mothers and fathers and cooperative breeding; grandmothers; why men live so long; why people help unrelated others; interdependence; why we care so much about what other people think of us; social comparison; the ability to join together and rebel against tyrannical leaders; and how to promote large-scale cooperation.

Jason Munshi-South: Rats and Evolution

Razib Khan’s Unsupervised Learning | 13 August 2021 | 1h 03m | Listen Later | iTunes | Spotify
Interview with Jason Munshi-South about the ecology and genetics of rats. Discusses the brown rat versus other species; their interactions with mice and cats; the origins, phylogeography and genetics of brown rats; and their use as a model organism.

Gregory Cochran on The 10,000 Year Explosion

New Books Network | 6 March 2009 | 1h 10m | Listen Later
Interview with Gregory Cochran about his book The 10,000 Year Explosion: How Civilization Accelerated Human Evolution, co-authored with Henry Harpending. Argues that human evolution has continued since the emergence of modern homo sapiens, particularly with the transition to agriculture, and due to cultural pressure – which has been going on quite recently and may be continuing today.

Humans, Dogs, and Other Domesticated Animals

Many Minds | 9 December 2020 | 1h 09m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Brian Hare about his book Survival of the Friendliest: Understanding our Origins and Rediscovering our Common Humanity, co-authored with Vanessa Woods. Discusses the evidence that as we domesticated farm animals to make them tamer and easier to work with, we also seem to have domesticated ourselves. Argues that self-domestication was the force that allowed ancient humans to develop larger social networks and, in turn, more sophisticated technologies.

The Power of Memes – Susan Blackmore

Dilemma Podcast | 21 October 2020 | 1h 09m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Susan Blackmore backgrounding mimetics – which analogises Darwinian evolution to explore how ideas propagate with replication, selection and variation. Draws on her book The Meme Machine.

Peter Richerson: Morality from an Evolutionary Perspective

This View of Life | 13 August 2020 | 0h 51m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Peter J. Richerson discussing morality from an evolutionary perspective. Draws on his book Not by Genes Alone: How Culture Transformed Human Evolution, co-authored with Robert Boyd.

Peter Gray on Education as a Biological Phenomenon

This View of Life | 21 October 2019 | 0h 42m | Listen Later | iTunes
Interview with Peter Gray about his book Free to Learn: Why Unleashing the Instinct to Play Will Make Our Children Happier, More Self-Reliant, and Better Students for Life. Applies an evolutionary perspective to education, arguing for child-lead learning on the grounds that children are evolved to learn what they need to know by imitating adults.