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Hardcover | Out of Print | ISBN: 9780262025799 | 564 pp. | 6 x 9 in | January 2005
Paperback | $25.95 Trade | £19.95 | ISBN: 9780262524605 | 564 pp. | 6 x 9 in | February 2006

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Adapting Minds

Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature

About the Author

David J. Buller is Associate Professor of Philosophy at Northern Illinois University.


“"Buller hopes that Adapting Minds can clear the way for some actual science about how evolution equips us to have psychologies. Anyone with a serious interest in evolution, psychology, or humanity should read it to free their mind for that task." The New Scientist”—
“"Adapting Minds is destined to become required reading among evolutionary psychology’s detractors. But, despite its flaws, it will be read with interest by evolutionary psychologists too. Buller provides a useful overview of the filed and of the current debates... Buller enables evolutionary psychologist to get back to arguing about the science." Nature”—
“"The author’s restraint and generous stance ensure that evolutionary psychologists have to take Adapting Minds seriously.... I highly commend [Buller] for having written an outstanding book. It sets the standard for the continuing debates on evolutionary psychology." Science”—


“Buller's critique of evolutionary psychology is measured, logical, and clearly developed. It is also devastating. Buller does not seek to refute the entirety of evolutionary psychology by finding a single magic bullet. Rather, he attends to the details, finding a variety of serious problems in the different arguments that evolutionary psychologists deploy. This is philosophy of science in the trenches, and it is excellent.”
Elliott Sober, Hans Reichenbach Professor and William Vilas Research Professor, University of Wisconsin, Madison
“This is a superb book, wonderfully clear in thought and expression. The evolutionary psychology program represented by Pinker, Cosmides, and their allies has already been the target of impressive theoretical discussion, but this has focused mostly on the assumptions they make about evolutionary theory and human paleobiology. Buller covers this material with exemplary clarity, but the real strength of his work lies in his searching critique of the experimental case for evolutionary psychology. His is by far the best treatment of these issues I have ever read. In case after case, Buller shows that the experimental case for the existence of Darwinian algorithms is much weaker than even skeptics like me have supposed.”
Kim Sterelny, Victoria University of Wellington New Zealand and Australian National University
“How do you tell the difference between evolutionary psychology as popular culture and as science? Buller solved the problem. He disentangles convictions born of everyday intuition from the thinking and evidence that are necissary for a scientific understanding of human cognition and behavior in an evolutionary perspective. In clear and accesible prose, he delivers a much-needed analysis of current theory and research claiming to unlock human nature. This book is essential for evolutionary psychologists, their critics, and hungry audiences.”
Linnda R. Caporael, Professor of Science and Technolgy Studies, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
“"This is the wave of the future in social science research: the dissolution of disciplinary boundaries, a unified conceptual framework, and rapid feedback between theoretical and empirical inquiry."--,”
David Sloan Wilson, Binghamton University, author of Darwin's Cathedral: Evolution, Religion and the Nature of Society