Pinker, who is professor of psychology at MIT, is that rare academic who can translate difficult ideas into bestselling books (his last was The Blank Slate), and now he has just sold a new opus to his editors at Penguin here and in the U.K. Wendy Wolf here and Stefan McGrath in London bought The Stuff of Thought: Human Ideas and Where They Come From from agent John Brockman, and Wolf will publish here in 2005. The new book is an ambitious attempt to show that the entire range of human thought is built on the foundation of a few core ideas, revolving around basic concepts of evolution and survival.