Caspar JM Hewett
It is Part Three, ‘A Better Society’, that really fails to live up to its promise. The opening chapter of this section, ‘Dysfunctional societies’, starts off reasonably enough, drawing attention to other possible explanations of the causes of the social problems discussed and showing how the evidence continues to point in the direction of income inequality as the major cause. After that, the authors descend into a highly dubious discussion of human nature and environmental thought that lets the book down.
Drawing on a wealth of literature from areas as diverse as management theory, economics and sociobiology, Talbot attempts to construct a pluralist view in the spirit of EO Wilson’s Consilience, in which the human mind is considered neither as a blank slate nor as entirely socially determined.