“I am often asked whether I agree with the new group selectionists, and the questioners are always surprised when I say I do not. After all, group selection sounds like a reasonable extension of evolutionary theory and a plausible explanation of the social nature of humans. Also, the group selectionists tend to declare victory, and write as if their theory has already superseded a narrow, reductionist dogma that selection acts only at the level of genes. In this essay, I’ll explain why I think that this reasonableness is an illusion. The more carefully you think about group selection, the less sense it makes, and the more poorly it fits the facts of human psychology and history.”
Steve Pinker takes the axe to something that seems smart… at first.
“Saygin and fellow researchers don’t think the phenomenon follows the valley metaphor exactly. Instead, they suggest the uncanny valley sensation arises when an artificial figure looks or behaves real enough to trigger a mental switchover — the viewer’s brain suddenly begins to consider the figure as a possible human. The artificial figure almost inevitably fails such close inspection.”