No peace without biology

Our warring ways have roots deep in evolution. The authors of a new book ask: Can we find peace there too?

Thomas Hayden and Malcolm Potts
Dec 18, 2008
In our new book about the biology of warfare, linkurl:__Sex and War: How Biology Explains Warfare and Terrorism and Offers a Path to a Safer Future__,; we trace the biological origins and evolution of war. The conclusion we draw is unavoidable. War, simply put, is a biological phenomenon. When war and biology are discussed together, it is usually in relation to biological weapons, or the physiology of the battlefield, or, goodness knows, the wounds endured by warriors both in combat and long afterwards. But it turns out that there is a much more intimate connection between biology and organized violence: evolution.
War has most often been studied by social scientists -- anthropologists embedding themselves with hunter-gatherer tribes, archaeologists teasing evidence of past epochs of war and peace from the ground, and psychologists and sociologists poking and prodding the minds of warriors and others. But one question often goes unasked: Why...