Are we getting better? Are we becoming less violent, more empathic, more caring? Is humankind evolving into humankinder? Harvard psychology professor Steven Pinker thinks we are, and he’s stated the case convincingly in his panoramic 696-page tome, The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined (2011). His argument is not new. Jeremy Rifken, in Empathic Civilization (2009), …

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