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A Cooperative Species by Herbert Gintis, Samuel Bowles

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9

The Evolution of Strong Reciprocity

My motive for doing what I am going to do is simply personal revenge. I do not expect to accomplish anything by it. . . . Of course, I would like to get revenge on the whole scientific and bureaucratic establishment . . . but that being impossible, I have to content myself with just a little revenge.

Theodore Kaczynski, Excerpts from the Unabomber’s Journal (1998)

The previous two chapters showed that an unconditional form of altruistic cooperation among members of a group could have evolved under conditions likely to have been experienced by our Late Pleistocene and early Holocene ancestors. But we also know that in experiments and everyday life, altruism is rarely unconditional. In the repeated public goods ...

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