Descartes' Baby: How the Science of Child Development Explains What Makes Us Human

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Basic Books, Apr 27, 2009 - Psychology - 288 pages
2 Reviews
All humans see the world in two fundamentally different ways: even babies have a rich understanding of both the physical and social worlds. They expect objects to obey principles of physics, and they’re startled when things disappear or defy gravity. Yet they can also read emotions and respond with anger, sympathy, and joy.In Descartes’ Baby, Bloom draws on a wealth of scientific discoveries to show how these two ways of knowing give rise to such uniquely human traits as humor, disgust, religion, art, and morality. How our dualist perspective, developed throughout our lives, profoundly influences our thoughts, feelings, and actions is the subject of this richly rewarding book.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - name99 - LibraryThing

Very very impressive. The basic story is the assumption that babies are born not just with innate baby physics, an intuitive understanding of how material object in the world should behave, but even ... Read full review

Descartes' baby: how the science of child development explains what makes us human

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

In this thought-provoking book, Bloom (psychology, Yale Univ.) posits that children are natural dualists, instinctively understanding the world as divided into two categories: physical objects and ... Read full review

Contents

I Foundations
1
II The Material Realm
35
III The Social Realm
97
IV The Spiritual Realm
187
Notes
229
References
241
Index
263
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About the author (2009)

Paul Bloom is Professor of Psychology at Yale University. His book How Children Learn the Meaning of Words won the Award for Excellence from the Association of American Publishers. He lives in New Haven, Connecticut.

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