New World/New Mind

Paul R. Ehrlich, Author, Paul Ornstein, Author, Robert E. Ornstein, With Doubleday Books $18.95 (302p) ISBN 978-0-385-23940-0
Ehrlich, Stanford University biologist and population expert, has teamed with psychologist Ornstein ( The Psychology of Consciousness ) to produce an important and urgent prescription for sanity. They perceive a mismatch between the human nervous system and our complex modern world: unlike early hunter-gatherers who evolved quick reflexes to cope with a limited environment, modern Americans face long-range problems not readily apparent to the five sensesexploding population, proliferation of nuclear warheads, depletion of the ozone layer, a staggering budget deficit, mass slaughter on our highways and by handguns. Whether or not one accepts the biological premise of their argument, their engagingly written, continually provocative synthesis effectively demonstrates how we use crude mental caricatures to manipulate a social and physical environment gone haywire. Although their talk of initiating conscious evolutionary progress in human beings may seem farfetched, their concrete proposals on TV programming, arms control, environmental planning, child rearing and curriculum changes are well worth heeding. (Jan.)
Reviewed on: 12/01/1988
Release date: 12/01/1988
Paperback - 978-0-671-69606-1
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