A bold, provocative exploration of the tension between our evolutionary history and our modern woes – and what we can do about it
We are living through the most prosperous age in all of human history, yet we are listless, divided and miserable. Wealth and comfort are unparalleled, but our political landscape is unmoored, and rates of suicide, loneliness and chronic illness continue to skyrocket. How do we explain the gap between these truths? And how should we respond?
For evolutionary biologists Heather Heying and Bret Weinstein, the cause of our woes is clear: the modern world is out of sync with our ancient brains and bodies. We evolved to live in clans, but today many people don’t even know their neighbours’ names. Survival in our earliest societies depended on living in harmony with nature, but today the food we eat, the work we do – even the light we absorb – is radically different from what our minds and bodies evolved to expect.
In this book, Heying and Weinstein draw on decades of their work teaching in college classrooms and exploring earth’s most biodiverse ecosystems to confront today’s pressing social ills – from widespread sleep deprivation and dangerous diets to damaging parenting styles and backward education practices. A Hunter-Gatherer’s Guide to the 21st Century outlines a science-based worldview that will empower you to live a better, wiser life.