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Jon Henley interviews Matt Ridley: The Rational Optimist is, essentially, about progress: how, of all the species on earth, only humans have managed so radically and completely to change the way they live. Animals, even the most intelligent ones, have not thus far known “economic growth” or “rising living standards” or “technological revolutions” (or, indeed, “credit crunches”). Why?

nterview in the Guardian today:

“If people are all the same underneath, how
has society changed so fast and so radically? Life
now is completely different to how it was 32,000 years ago. It’s
changed like that of no other species has. What’s made that
difference? Clearly our genes haven’t changed; this process has
happened far too fast for genetic change. My answer, bringing
together my evolutionary knowledge and a lot of economic reading,
is this: sex is to biology as exchange is to culture.”

By Matt Ridley | Tagged:  rational-optimist