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sex

Lucy Cooke — Bitch: On the Female of the Species

Shermer and Cooke discuss: the definition of male and female across the animal kingdom • male bias in the history of science • genes involved in sex determination and how they work • sexual selection • adaptationism vs. non-adaptationism • Why do women have orgasms? • why female animals are just as promiscuous, competitive, aggressive, dominant and dynamic as males • what humans can learn from non-human animals • maternal/paternal instincts • patriarchy/matriarchy across the animal kingdom • why the sexes are far more alike than they are different.

Frans De Waal on Sex and Gender Across the Primate Spectrum

What is gender? How different are men and women? Are differences due to biological sex or to culture? How do they compare with what is known about our fellow primates? Do apes also culturally learn their sex roles or is “gender” uniquely human? Michael Shermer and Frans de Waal discuss sexual orientation, gender identity, and the limitations of the gender binary, exceptions to which are also found in other primates.

David Buss — When Men Behave Badly: The Hidden Roots of Sexual Deception, Harassment, and Assault

In episode 181 of Michael Shermer’s podcast, Michael speaks with professor of psychology David Buss about sexual conflict, morality, and the double standards that flourish even in the most sexually egalitarian cultures on earth. Buss shows that this “battle of the sexes” is deeper and far more pervasive than anyone has recognized, revealing the hidden roots of sexual conflict — roots that originated over deep evolutionary time.

eSkeptic for May 15, 2021

In episode 181 of Michael Shermer’s podcast, Michael speaks with professor of psychology David Buss about sexual conflict, morality, and the double standards that flourish even in the most sexually egalitarian cultures on earth. Buss shows that this “battle of the sexes” is deeper and far more pervasive than anyone has recognized, revealing the hidden roots of sexual conflict — roots that originated over deep evolutionary time.

Agustín Fuentes — Why We Believe: Evolution and the Human Way of Being

Why are so many humans religious? Why do we daydream, imagine, and hope? Philosophers, theologians, social scientists, and historians have offered explanations for centuries, but their accounts often ignore or even avoid human evolution. Fuentes employs evolutionary, neurobiological, and anthropological evidence to argue that belief — the ability to commit passionately and wholeheartedly to an idea — is central to the human way of being in the world.

eSkeptic for November 24, 2020

Why are so many humans religious? Why do we daydream, imagine, and hope? In Science Salon # 144 Michael Shermer speaks with Agustin Fuentes about his new book Why We Believe: Evolution and the Human Way of Being.

Howard Bloom — Einstein, Michael Jackson, and Me: A Search for the Soul in the Power Pits of Rock and Roll

Howard Bloom — called “the greatest press agent that rock and roll has ever known” — is a science nerd who founded the biggest PR firm in the music industry and helped build or sustain the careers of rock-and-roll legends: Michael Jackson, Prince, Bob Marley, Bette Midler, Billy Joel, Billy Idol, Paul Simon, Peter Gabriel, David Byrne, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Queen, Kiss, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five, Run DMC, ZZ Top, Joan Jett, Chaka Khan, and one hundred more. What was he after? He was on a hunt for the gods inside of you and me.

eSkeptic for June 9, 2020

In Science Salon # 119 Michael Shermer speaks with Howard Bloom about his book Einstein, Michael Jackson, and Me: A Search for the Soul in the Power Pits of Rock and Roll. PLUS, we examine free speech and censorship in Skeptic Magazine 25.2 (2020): Giving the Devil His Due, available now in print and digital formats.

Travels Within the Feminist Divide

In this column social psychologist Carol Tavris discusses two new books whose authors separate what’s right in the pursuit of justice from what’s self-righteous. As skeptics, they repudiate received wisdom and party loyalty, showing that by separating what we wish for from wishful thinking, we can find better, more creative, more flexible routes to attaining the former.

eSkeptic for June 2, 2020

In Science Salon # 118 Michael Shermer speaks with distinguished artificial intelligence researcher Stuart Russell about this new book Human Compatible: Artificial Intelligence and the Problem of Control. PLUS social psychologist Carol Tavris discusses two new books whose authors separate what’s right in the pursuit of justice from what’s self-righteous.

eSkeptic for April 24, 2019

In Science Salon # 63, through the lens of evolutionary science, Dr. Hector A. Garcia offers a novel perspective on why we hold our political ideas, and why they are so often in conflict. Drawing on examples from across the animal kingdom, Garcia reveals how even the most complex political processes can be influenced by our basic drives to survive and reproduce.

Dr. Hector A. Garcia — Sex, Power, and Partisanship: How Evolutionary Science Makes Sense of Our Political Divide

In Science Salon # 63, through the lens of evolutionary science, Dr. Hector A. Garcia offers a novel perspective on why we hold our political ideas, and why they are so often in conflict. Drawing on examples from across the animal kingdom, Garcia reveals how even the most complex political processes can be influenced by our basic drives to survive and reproduce.

Sex, Jealousy & Violence: A Skeptical Look at Evolutionary Psychology

An article excerpted from Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature, by David J. Buller, with permission from the publisher, MIT Press.

Death, Sex & Evolution

IN THIS RIVETING STORY about his remarkable discoveries from the Gogo fossil site in the Kimberly district of Western Australia, the Australian paleontologist John Long, now Vice President of Research and Collections at the Natural History Museum of L.A. County, takes us beyond just reconstructing animal morphology and into the realm of restoring ancient behavior…

10-02-03

In this week’s eSkeptic, Victoria Bekiempis reviews Why Women Have Sex: Understanding Sexual Motivations from Adventure to Revenge (and Everything in Between) by Cindy M. Meston and David M. Buss.

05-03-29

In this week’s eSkeptic, Susan Carol Losh, Ph.D. responds to an earlier eSkeptic (“Sex, Brains & Hands — Gender Differences in Cognitive Abilities” by Diane Halpern, Tuesday, March 15th, 2005) with a letter titled “Mr. Summers’ Hidden Agenda: Women, Men & the 80-Hour Work Week.”

05-03-15

In this week’s eSkeptic, Dr. Diane Halpern delves into the science of gender differences in her article “Sex, Brains & Hands — Gender Differences in Cognitive Abilities.”

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