Author’s Note: The following originally appeared at ScienceBlogs.com and was subsequently a finalist in the 3 Quarks Daily Science Prize judged by Richard Dawkins.
"Rand" by Nathaniel Gold “Every political philosophy has to begin with a theory of human nature,” wrote Harvard evolutionary biologist Richard Lewontin in his book Biology as Ideology .
A new study argues that in-law competition drove the evolution of menopause. But is the story too good to be true? "Evil Queen" by Nathaniel Gold In the classic Scandinavian folktale "The Twelve Wild Ducks," also known as "The Twelve Brothers" in Grimms' Fairy Tales , a wicked old Queen is jealous of her daughter-in-law's beauty.
"Primates Playing Poker" by Nathaniel Gold Humans are one of the most cooperative species on the planet. Our ability to coordinate behavior and work collaboratively with others has allowed us to create the natural world’s largest and most densely populated societies, outside of deep sea microbial mats and a few Hymenoptera mega-colonies.However, a key problem when trying to understand the evolution of cooperation has been the issue of cheaters.
The United States is the deadliest wealthy country in the world. Can science help us explain, or even solve, our national crisis?
Prominent scientists are in a bitter struggle over the origins of kindness. But the root of this conflict may be the most ironic part of all.<
After a year of collaborative work it is time to reflect and give thanks. Won't you join us? "Portrait of the Artist as a Young Ape" by Nathaniel Gold Today marks the one year anniversary of The Primate Diaries in its latest incarnation here at the Scientific American blog network as well as my collaboration with the artist, and fellow primate, Nathaniel Gold.
In contrast to "killer-apes," the latest evidence suggests our peaceful primate cousins may be a better model for human origins. Author's note: A new study published in the journal Nature has sequenced the genome of bonobos and compared them to chimpanzees as well as humans finding some surprising results.
Science is social, but when political ideology takes precedence over experimental evidence the results can be fatal. "Eduard Kolchinsky" by Nathaniel Gold The United States is in the midst of a partisan political battle over science.
Third genders, two spirits, and a media without a clue. Author's Note: Earlier this month the UK Daily Mail reported on continued excavation at an archaeological site near Prague where researchers described an individual with an alternative gender identity.
STAFFBehind the scenes at Scientific AmericanRead
Anecdotes from the Archive
Anthropology in Practice
Exploring the human condition.Read
Insights into intelligence, creativity, and the mindRead
Everything you always wanted to know about raising science-literate kidsRead
Critical views of science in the newsRead
Dark Star Diaries
Explore the science behind the dog in your bedRead
News and research about endangered species from around the worldRead
Frontiers for Young Minds
Science by and for kids ages 8-15Read
Commentary invited by editors of Scientific AmericanRead
Illusions, Delusions, and Everyday DeceptionsRead
Discussion and news about planets, exoplanets, and astrobiologyRead
MIND Guest Blog
Commentary invited by editors of Scientific American MindRead
Not bad science
New discoveries in animal behavior and cognitionRead
Opinion, arguments & analyses from guest experts and from the editors of Scientific AmericanRead
More than wires - exploring the connections between energy, environment, and our livesRead
Roots of Unity
Mathematics: learning it, doing it, celebrating it.Read
Adventures in the good science of rock-breaking.Read
STAFFIllustrating science since 1845Read
STAFFA science blog, sans blagueRead
Amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals - living and extinctRead
The Artful Amoeba
A Blog About the Weird Wonderfulness of Life on EarthRead
Exploring and celebrating diversity in science.Read