The Moral Animal

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The Moral Animal
The Moral Animal, first edition.jpg
Cover of the first edition
Author Robert Wright
Country United States
Language English
Subject Social evolution, Evolutionary psychology, Morality, Ethics
Publisher Vintage Books
Publication date
Media type Print (Hardcover and Paperback)
Pages 466 pages (paperback)
ISBN 0-679-76399-6 (1st edition, hardcover)
OCLC 33496013

The Moral Animal is a 1994 book by Robert Wright, in which Wright explores many aspects of everyday life through evolutionary biology.


Wright explores many aspects of everyday life through evolutionary biology. He provides Darwinian explanations for human behavior and psychology, social dynamics and structures, as well as people's relationships with lovers, friends, and family.

Wright borrows extensively from Charles Darwin's better-known publications, including On the Origin of Species (1859), but also from his chronicles and personal writings, illustrating behavioral principles with Darwin's own biographical examples.


The New York Times Book Review chose The Moral Animal as one of the 12 best books of 1994; it was a national bestseller and has been published in 12 languages. Paleontologist Stephen Jay Gould criticized the book in The New York Review of Books.[1] Anthropologist Melvin Konner called the book "delightful".[2]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Morris, Richard. The Evolutionists: The Struggle for Darwin's Soul. W. H. Freeman and Company, 2001, p. 244.
  2. ^ Konner, Melvin. The Tangled Wing: Biological Constraints on the Human Spirit. Times Books, 2002, p. 498.

Bibliographical information[edit]

  • Robert Wright (1995-08-29). The Moral Animal: Why We Are, the Way We Are: The New Science of Evolutionary Psychology. Vintage. ISBN 978-0-679-76399-4. 

External links[edit]