Cover

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Title page, Copyright

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pp. i-vi

Contents

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pp. vii-viii

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Preface

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pp. ix-x

For more than a hundred years, a fierce debate raged within the scientific community on the importance of blood kinship in shaping altruism in everything from animals to humans. This debate, which began in 1859, was extremely...

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Acknowledgments

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pp. xi-xiv

The acknowledgment section always makes me nervous, as I fear that I may forget to express thanks to one of the many people who helped make this book possible. That said, I am grateful to the following individuals who took time from...

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Chapter One: A Special Difficulty That Might Prove Fatal

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pp. 1-11

While writing On the Origin of Species in the late 1850s, Charles Darwin was unencumbered by the strict editorial rules that apply to scientists today. He had the liberty to indulge in wide-ranging digressions that at times became streams of consciousness. 1 This freedom allowed him...

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Chapter Two: Darwin's Bulldog versus the Prince of Evolution

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pp. 12-36

England, 1888: Slowly adapting to life in his home away from home, former Russian prince and well-known anarchist Petr Kropotkin stays vigilant, always keeping an eye out for the Russian secret police, who he rightly...

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Chapter Three: The Greatest Word from Science since Darwin

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pp. 37-60

Petr kropotkin published his book-length manifesto Mutual Aid in 1902. And while Kropotkin lectured on the subject for years after that, things were fairly quiet with respect to new work on altruism and its relation (or lack of relation) to kinship...

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Chapter Four: J.B.S.: The Last Man Who Might Know All There Was to Be Known

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pp. 61-85

J.B.S. Haldane was a man fond of one-liners. Scientist, science writer, and science fiction writer wrapped into one, Haldane once summarized his views on life by noting, “My own suspicion is that the universe is not only...

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Chapter Five: Hamilton's Rule

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pp. 86-106

William David Hamilton grew up in a small British country cottage outside of the small town of Sevenoaks, Kent. The cottage itself was called “Oaklea,” after Hamilton’s father’s old home in New Zealand. Oaklea sat atop a hill named Badger’s Mount—a hill that served as a base for...

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Chapter Six: The Price of Kinship

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pp. 107-114

After he returned from Brazil in 1964, Bill Hamilton worked as a researcher at Imperial College’s field station in Berkshire. This facility, called Silwood Park, had a stellar reputation for insect ecology and population...

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Chapter Seven: Spreading the Word

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pp. 115-122

Though his work had a profound impact on people like George Price, Bill Hamilton’s ideas on blood kinship and altruism would take time to spread to other scientists and to the lay public. Indeed, most people knew...

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Chapter Eight: Keepers of the Flame

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pp. 123-141

If there is a focal point for modern work on kinship and altruism, it resides on the third floor of Seeley Mudd Hall at Cornell University. This place houses a group of scientists that, as a unit, have done more work testing...

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Chapter Nine: Curator of Mathematical Models

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pp. 142-150

When E. O. Wilson’s Sociobiology was published in 1975, Bill Hamilton was once again studying insects in the forests of Brazil, this time with his wife, Christine, and their two daughters by his side. When Hamilton returned...

Notes

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pp. 151-184

Index

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pp. 185-188