'Phenomenal ... The only theory I am aware of that attempts to explain broad patterns of human psychology on a global scale' Coren Apicella, Washington Post
Do you identify yourself by your profession, rather than your family? Do you consider yourself unique? Do you have personal goals? If so, perhaps you are WEIRD: raised in a society that is Western, Educated, Industrialized, Rich and Democratic.
Unlike most who have ever lived, WEIRD people are highly individualistic, self-involved, control-oriented, nonconformist and analytical. They focus on themselves - their attributes, accomplishments and aspirations - over their social roles. How did WEIRD populations become so psychologically peculiar? What part did these differences play in the industrial revolution and the expansion of European power? And what do they mean for our sense of who we are now?
Joseph Henrich, who developed the influential concept of WEIRD, explores the historical evolution of family structures, marriage and religion, and draws on leading-edge research in anthropology, psychology, economics and evolutionary biology to analyse how these institutions shaped the Western mind. Brilliant, provocative, engaging and surprising, The Weirdest People in the World will transform your understanding of how we behave.
'Illuminates a journey into human nature that is more exciting, more complex and ultimately more consequential than has previously been suspected' Nature
A masterpiece. Staggering in range, intricate in detail, thrilling in ambition, this book is a landmark in social thought. Henrich may go down as the most influential social scientist of the first half of the twenty-first century.
Illuminates a journey into human nature that is more exciting, more complex and ultimately more consequential than has previously been suspected.
Phenomenal ... The only theory I am aware of that attempts to explain broad patterns of human psychology on a global scale.
A massively ambitious work that explains the transition to the modern world ... Significantly contributes to our understanding
The most absorbing, provocative and compelling book I have read in a long time. Joseph Henrich's thrilling exposé of cultural variety and evolution is grounded in meticulous science, and his arguments go beyond the milestone of Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel. You will never look again in the same way at your own seemingly universal values.
There's nothing so fascinating as a social anthropologist's analysis of his own tribe. Henrich shows how strange and exceptional Western society is when compared with most of the world
Henrich has thought more deeply about cultural evolution than anybody alive. His fascinating insights into just how weird people like he and I are, with our western lifestyles, and what the implications of that are for better and for worse, are a great contribution to scholarship.
Propelled by a bold vision, this landmark study is required reading for anyone curious about the origins of modernity
Henrich and his colleagues are shaking the foundations of psychology and economics - and hoping to change the way social scientists think about human behaviour and culture.