Yup, we’ve got that one

And more than one million more. Become a member today and read free for two weeks.

Read free for two weeks

Armed with extraordinary new discoveries about our genes, acclaimed science writer Matt Ridley turns his attention to the nature-versus-nurture debate in a thoughtful book about the roots of human behavior.

Ridley recounts the hundred years' war between the partisans of nature and nurture to explain how this paradoxical creature, the human being, can be simultaneously free-willed and motivated by instinct and culture. With the decoding of the human genome, we now know that genes not only predetermine the broad structure of the brain, they also absorb formative experiences, react to social cues, and even run memory. They are consequences as well as causes of the will.

Topics: DNA, Genetics, Evolution, Popular Science, Anthropology, Social Science, Informative, and Psychological

Published: HarperCollins on Apr 7, 2003
ISBN: 9780062200884
List price: $10.39
Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for The Agile Gene: How Nature Turns on Nurture
With a 30 day free trial you can read online for free
  1. This book can be read on up to 6 mobile devices.
Clear rating

It is NOT another book about nature vs. nurture debate. This the latest research into the interdependence of genes and environment and experience. Very, very interesting stuff, but it took me a lot of time to finish. There are too many digressions in each chapter, too many anecdotes, and too many illustrations to each point. It’s very clever and shows a lot of erudition (from Henry James to nematodes in one paragraph), but, in the end, the relevant information is all over the place and it is hard to follow what the actual thesis is. Some chapters are better than others, but I had to re-read pages at a time to make sure I knew what the main point was.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book is superbly written and makes a very turgid subject interesting and understandable. Ridley shows that those who attribute all human behaviour either to nature (genetics) or nurture (environment) are both determinist and both wrong. Genes respond to the environment in fascinating and complex ways which he describes with well chosen experiments described in a very entertaining narrative.read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.

Fabulous look into the relationship between genes and environment. Though it's left me more confused than ever. Though more informed than ever too. In summary, and as the title of the book sums up very neatly, there is no "versus" in the nature v. nurture debate. Great writer - the amount of information is enormous but the text is eminently readable all the same.

read more
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Read all reviews

Reviews

It is NOT another book about nature vs. nurture debate. This the latest research into the interdependence of genes and environment and experience. Very, very interesting stuff, but it took me a lot of time to finish. There are too many digressions in each chapter, too many anecdotes, and too many illustrations to each point. It’s very clever and shows a lot of erudition (from Henry James to nematodes in one paragraph), but, in the end, the relevant information is all over the place and it is hard to follow what the actual thesis is. Some chapters are better than others, but I had to re-read pages at a time to make sure I knew what the main point was.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
This book is superbly written and makes a very turgid subject interesting and understandable. Ridley shows that those who attribute all human behaviour either to nature (genetics) or nurture (environment) are both determinist and both wrong. Genes respond to the environment in fascinating and complex ways which he describes with well chosen experiments described in a very entertaining narrative.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.

Fabulous look into the relationship between genes and environment. Though it's left me more confused than ever. Though more informed than ever too. In summary, and as the title of the book sums up very neatly, there is no "versus" in the nature v. nurture debate. Great writer - the amount of information is enormous but the text is eminently readable all the same.

Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
An insightful book detailing Ridley's hypothesis of how behavior is modified by gene expression and vice versa. Delves into many scientific ideas without coming out dry and esoteric. I recommend this book for anyone interested about the biology of behavior.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
To me this book felt like a padded out version of Genome, incidentally an excellent book. If you have read Genome recently, then you will notice many, many facts being repeated here almost verbatim. On it's own, this book is probably great, but it is a lousy read if Genome is still fresh in your memory.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Enjoyed it from beginning to end.
Is this review helpful? Yes | NoThank you for your feedback.
Load more
scribd