Leading researcher into social intelligence and evolutionary psychology William von Hippel argues that the main advantage early primates had against other animals was their ability to live, and thrive, in social groups. Furthermore, this ability was such a revolutionary advantage that it was the chief evolutionary pressure driving the development of the human brain.
It is our brain that sets us apart as Homo sapiens, the 'thinker' who colonised the entire planet. Yet while we think of our species as highly inventive, it is striking how few of us actually invent things. Is social intelligence, rather than IQ, the defining aptitude of our species? If so, under what conditions are we primed to cooperate with others? And what role does self-deception play in our success?
The Social Leapwill help you understand who we are, why we developed this way, and how - among competing social pressures - we can lead a happy life.