Unlearning the Worst Parts of Ourselves
Let’s talk about babies, baby.
One of my favorite books is Dune, but that’s not important right now. Another (very different) book on my list of favorites is Paul Bloom’s Just Babies: The Origins of Good and Evil.
Since I am probably not doing Bloom any favors with some of his colleagues by plugging his book, let me say up front that you’d be hard-pressed to find a nicer or more progressively liberal academic. I mean, he’s Canadian for Pete’s sake. He’s also the Brooks and Suzanne Ragen professor of psychology and cognitive science at Yale University and co-editor-in-chief of Behavioral and Brain Sciences (“I subscribe for the recipes!”—Hannibal Lecter).
Anyway, Just Babies is a fascinating survey of what we know about the programming babies come into the world with. More on that in a second, but I should first explain why we’re talking about babies.