Paths To Knowledge (dot Science)

What is actually real in Objective Reality? How do you know? Now, prove it's real!

The Stuff of Thought – If I held you any closer I’d be on the other side of you!

Posted by pwl on March 21, 2009

This is one of the most fascinating books that I’ve ever read, along with Society of Mind by Minsky, A New Kind of Science by Stephen Wolfram, Science and Sanity by Alfred Korzybski, Frogs into Princes by Richard Bandler, and of course, R. Buckminster Fuller’s Synergetics. Earth shattering! Not only is the author, Steven Pinker, an eloquent writer he brings this same quality into his speaking.

Renowned linguist Steven Pinker speaks at Google’s Mountain View, CA, headquarters about his book “The Stuff of Thought.” This event took place on September 24, 2007, as part of the Authors@Google series.

New York Times Bestseller Editors’ Picks: Best Science Books of 2007
Choice: Outstanding Academic Titles of 2008

“A display of fiercely intricate intelligence and nobody with the least interest in language should miss reading it.”-The Times (London)
“Curious, inventive, fearless, naughty.” -New York Times
“Packed with information, clear, witty, attractively written, and generally persuasive.” -Colin McGinn, New York Review of Books

The Stuff of Thought is a revelation. In this exhilarating new book, Steven Pinker analyzes how our words relate to thoughts and to the world around us and reveals what this tells us about ourselves.

How does a mind that evolved to think about rocks and plants and enemies think about love and physics and democracy? Why do we threaten and bribe and seduce in such elaborate, often comical ways? How can a choice of metaphors start a war, impeach a president, or win an election? Why do people impose taboos on topics like sex, excretion, and the divine? What does the peculiar syntax of swearing (just what does the “fuck” in “fuck you” actually mean?) tell us about ourselves? Why do some names thrive while others fall out of circulation? How do we control the amount of information that we absorb? And what good does this actually do us? Pinker answers all these questions and many, many more. He shows us that language really can tell us unexpected and fascinating things about ourselves.

The Stuff of Thought is a book for everyone. Steven Pinker has devoted his life to studying the way we think and communicate. And language, in his hands, becomes a profound, and highly entertaining, way to shed light on every aspect of human nature.

Another amazing talk by Steven Pinker took place at TED on the topic of violence.

Steven Pinker – The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature

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