Design for a Life: How Behaviour Develops

Design for a Life: How Behaviour Develops

by Paul Martin (Author), Patrick Bateson (Author)


How and why does each of us grow up to be the person we are? What role do genes play in shaping our behaviour and personalities? Are our characters fixed, or can we change as adults? How does early experience affect our sexual preferences? Design for a Life explains the science of behavioural development - the biological and psychological processes that build a unique adult from a fertilised egg. Instead of the conventional opposition between nature (genes) and nurture (environment), Design for a Life offers a new approach that synthesises biology and psychology. It explores the developmental cooking processes that give rise to individuals, and considers in turn how these processes have evolved.


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More Information

Format: Paperback
Pages: 288
Edition: New edition
Publisher: Vintage
Published: 07 Sep 2000

ISBN 10: 0099267624
ISBN 13: 9780099267621
Book Overview: 'In a refreshingly lucid and accessible manner, the authors step delicately and successfully through the minefield of the nature-versus-nurture debate that has pitted biologists against social scientists for centuries' - Times Higher Education Supplement

Media Reviews
If you have time to read only one book about human development, read this one -- Jared Diamond, Professor of Physiology at UCLA and Pulitzer Prize Winner
This thoughtful and engaging book should be on everyone's reading list * New Scientist *
Refresh your brows with the cool breeze of reason that is Bateson and Martin's overview... fascinating * Guardian *
At last! In their sane and lucid - and much needed - corrective to the torrent of overblown genetic rhetoric, Patrick Bateson and Paul Martin take the reader on a journey through humanity's seven ages -- Steven Rose
Bateson and Martin have delivered what others have claimed to provide: a solid, signposted road out of the trench war between nature and nurture -- Marek Kohn * Independent *
Author Bio
Patrick Bateson is Emeritus Professor of Ethology (the biological study of behaviour) at Cambridge University, a fellow at King's College, Cambridge and a Fellow of the Royal Society. He has also been the provost of King's College, Cambridge and the Biological Secretary of the Royal Society. He received a BA in Zoology and a PhD in Animal Behaviour from Cambridge University, held a Harkness Fellowship at Stanford University and was Director of the the Sub-Department of Animal Behaviour at Cambridge for ten years. He has edited and co-edited several books, including Mate Choice (1983), The Development and Integration of Behaviour (1991), Behavioural Mechanisms in Evolutionary Perspective (1992) and the series Perspectives in Ethology. Paul Martin studied biology at Cambridge University, where he acquired a First in Natural Sciences and a PhD in behavioural biology; and at Stanford University, where he was a Harkness Fellow. He subsequently lectured and researched at Cambridge University. He is the co-author, with Patrick Bateson, of Measuring Behaviour (1993), and author of The Sickening Mind (1998).