The Global Brain

The Global Brain

The Evolution of the Mass Mind From the Big Bang to the 21st Century

Book - 2000
Average Rating:
1
Rate this:
WILEY
"This lusty tome is a stunning commitment to scientific evidence."
--Lynn Marguli

Advance Praise for GLOBAL BRAIN "Howard Bloom believes that the Leviathan, or society as an organism, is not a fanciful metaphor but an actual product of evolution. The Darwinian struggle for existence has taken place among societies, as well as among individuals within societies. We do strive as individuals, but we are also part of something larger than ourselves, with a complex physiology and mental life that we carry out but only dimly understand. With this bold vision of evolution and human behavior, Bloom has raced ahead to explore possibilities that the timid scientific herd may well be forced to follow."
--DAVID SLOAN WILSON Coauthor, Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior

"A soaring song of songs about the amorous origins of the world and its almost medieval urge to copulate."
--KEVIN KELLY, Editor-at-Large, Wired Author, Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems and the Economic World

"A fascinating new evolutionary theory that could deeply change our view of life, and a new worldview that could radically change our interpretation of social structures."
--FLORIAN ROETZER, Editor, Telepolis, Germany

"You have not lived until you have interacted with Howard Bloom. He offers sweeping looks at similar functional patterns of organization at cellular, neural, social, and cosmic levels, combining them with powerful insights on social history and movements in human thought and rituals."
--JAMES BRODY, Ph.D., Founder, clinical sociobiology

"I have met God and he lives in Brooklyn. I could try to convince you that Howard Bloom is next on a very short list that includes Darwin, Freud, Einstein, and Buckminster Fuller, but Howard can probably do a much better job of convincing you himself."
--RICHARD METZGER, Editor, Disinfo.com Host of Channel Four(U.K.) TVs Disinfo Natio

"Howard Bloom's Global Brain is filled with scientific firsts. It is the first book to make a strong, solidly backed, and theoretically-original case that we do not live the lonely lives of selfish beings driven by selfish genes, but are parts of a larger whole. It is the first to propose that sociality was implicit in the start of the universe--the Big Bang. Global Brain is the first book to present strong evidence that evolutionary, biological, perceptual, and emotional mechanisms have made us parts of a social learning machine--a mass mind which includes all species of life, not just humankind. It is the first to take this idea out of the realm of mysticism and into the sphere of hard-nosed, data-derived reality. And it is one of the few books which carry off such grand visions with energy, excitement, and keen insight."
Elizabeth Loftus, immediate past president, American Psychological Society, author, Witness for the Defense and The Myth of Repressed Memory

Global Brain: The Evolution of Mass Mind from the Big Bang to the 21st Century is the follow-up to Howard Blooms first book, The Lucifer Principle: a scientific expedition into the forces of history, which The Washington Post called "a mesmerizing mirror of the human condition," and which critic Mark Graham of Denvers Rocky Mountain Post praised as "a philosophical look at the history of our species, which alternated between fascinating and frightening. Reading it was like reading Dean Koontz or Stephen King: I couldn't put it down.

The Lucifer Principle was a shock to those who believe that the greed of genes turns us into selfish loners, but Global Brain: The Evolution of Mass Mind from the Big Bang to the 21st Century will come as an even bigger surprise. It presents evidence that this cosmos has been "social" since its first microseconds of existence, and that the first communal intelligence appeared among colonies of cyanobacteria 3.5 billion years ago. These bacteria pioneered the first worldwide research and development system eons before the emergence of women and men. Global Brain follows the evolution of individual and mass minds from the multi-trillion member collaborations among our bacterial ancestors to the ten-thousand-strong mass marches and claw-to-claw showdowns of Mesozoic spiny lobsters. It demonstrates how the first birds of the Jurassic age gathered in flocks and how their descendants were so tightly data-linked that cultural fads could spread hundreds of miles through the avian grapevine in a matter of mere days

Underpinning Global Brain's rewrite of the evolutionary saga is a new approach to social theory, one derived not from abstract principles but from observation of the real thing--living communities of all kinds--including the most fascinating of the lot: societies of human minds. Global Brain probes the rise of Neolithic cities thousands of years before Ur and Babylon, and explores how these little-known urban centers changed the very nature of human identity. It shows how transnational subcultures arose in Greece a hundred years before the glory days of Athens, and how these havens for unconventional men and women transformed the mechanism of collective creativity. Then Global Brain reveals how the sometimes brutal political stances promoted by Pythagoras, Socrates, and Plato still struggle for dominance at the turn of the 21st century

Global Brain presents evidence that the shared intelligence of humankind is part of a larger planetary mind, one that combines the learning of microbes, waterfowl, predatory cats, idealists, militants, religionists, and scientists. The book predicts that the great world war of the 21st century will take place between the collective intelligence of humanity and that of a world wide web 96 trillion generations old and billions of years wise—the global internet between microbial societies. Finally, Global Brain anticipates some of the creative paths this planet's team of battlers and borrowers may take during the next hundred and fifty years

Kevin Kelly, editor-at-large of Wired magazine and author of Out of Control, says Global Brain is "a soaring song of songs about the amorous origins of the world, and its almost medieval urge to copulate." Evolutionary biologist David Sloan Wilson, author of Unto Others: The evolution and psychology of unselfish behavior, adds that, "With this bold vision of evolution and human behavior, Bloom has raced ahead to explore possibilities that the timid scientific herd may well end up following." And Joseph Chilton Pearce, author of Evolution's End: Claiming the Potential of Our Intelligence, says "I have finished Howard Bloom's two books, The Lucifer Principle and Global Brain, in that order, and am seriously awed, near overwhelmed by the magnitude of what he has done. I never expected to see, in any form, from any sector, such an accomplishment. I doubt there is a stronger intellect than Bloom's on the planet.

"A soaring song of songs about the amorous origins of the world, and its almost medieval urge to copulate."
Kevin Kelly, Editor-at-Large of Wired, author New Rules for the New Economy: 10 Radical Strategies for a Connected World and Out of Control: The New Biology of Machines, Social Systems and the Economic World.

"Howard Bloom's Global Brain is filled with scientific firsts. It is the first book to make a strong, solidly backed, and theoretically-original case that we do not live the lonely lives of selfish beings driven by selfish genes, but are parts of a larger whole. It is the first to propose that sociality was implicit in the start of the universe--the Big Bang. Global Brain is the first book to present strong evidence that evolutionary, biological, perceptual, and emotional mechanisms have made us parts of a social learning machine--a mass mind which includes all species of life, not just humankind. It is the first to take this idea out of the realm of mysticism and into the sphere of hard-nosed, data-derived reality. And it is one of the few books which carry off such grand visions with energy, excitement, and keen insight."
Elizabeth Loftus, immediate past president, American Psychological Society, author, Witness for the Defense and The Myth of Repressed Memory

"This lusty tome generated by Blooms voracious reading habit and extraordinary talent for explanation proclaims that groups of individuals—from people to vervet monkeys to bacteria—organize themselves, create novelty, alter their surroundings, and triumph to leave more offspring than loner individuals. A stunning commitment to scientific evidence, this sequel to The Lucifer Principle ought to purge the academic world of 'selfish genes' and the neodarwinist dogma of 'individual selection'."
Lynn Margulis, Distinguished University Professor, University of Massachusetts, recipient of a 1999 National Medal of Science, author of Symbiotic Planet: A New Look at Evolution.

"Howard Bloom has a fascinating vision of the interplay of life, and a compelling style which I found captivating."
Nils Daulaire, President and CEO, Global Health Council

"I have finished Howard Bloom's two books, The Lucifer Principle and Global Brain, in that order, and am seriously awed, near overwhelmed by the magnitude of what he has done. I never expected to see, in any form, from any sector, such an accomplishment. I doubt there is a stronger intellect than Bloom's on the planet."
Joseph Chilton Pearce, author of Evolution's End: Claiming the Potential of Our Intelligence.

"I have met God and he lives in Brooklyn. I could try to convince you that Howard Bloom is next on a very short list that includes Darwin, Freud, Einstein and Buckminster Fuller, but Howard can probably do a much better job of convincing you himself."
Richard Metzger, creative director Disinfo.com, host of Channel Four TV Britains Disinfo Nation.

"In a superbly written and totally original argument, Howard Bloom continues his one-man tradition of tackling the taboo subjects. With a marvelously erudite survey of life and society from bacteria to the Internet, he demonstrates that group selection is for real and the group mind was there from the start. What we are entering now is but the latest phase in the evolution of the global brain. This is a must read for professionals and laymen alike.
Robin Fox, University Professor of Social Theory, Rutgers University, co-author with Lionel Tiger of The Imperial Animal.

"A modern-day prophet, Bloom compels us to admit that evolution is a team sport. This is a picture of the universe in which human emotions find their basis in the survival of matter, and the atoms themselves are held together with love. I am awestruck."
Douglas Rushkoff—author of Media Virus, Coercion, and Ecstasy Club

"Global Brain is wonderful! I'm amazed at the book's knowledge and the scope of its reach. The 'mass mind' idea is wondrous, smart and immensely creative."
Georgie Anne Geyer, syndicated columnist, Universal Press Syndicate, and author of Guerrilla Prince: The Untold Story of Fidel Castro.

"Howard Bloom's work is simply brilliant and there is nothing else like it, anywhere--we've looked, as have our colleagues. Global Brain is powerful, provocative, and mind-blowing."
Don Edward Beck, Ph.D., author of Spiral Dynamics, co-director, National Values Center

"The Thales of the Internet, Howard Bloom thinks what he wants, writes what he thinks, and performs his synthesis with a good heart, uncompromising truth, creative brain, and mountains of evidence. From the bacterial web of Eshel Ben-Jacob to the scientific sidelining of Professor Ling, we see the daunting power of groups that interact and sacrifice their members in order to thrive and evolve. Global Brain is a historical tour-de-force, one based on evolution and the complexity of adaptive systems."
Dorion Sagan, author of Biospheres and co-author of Into the Cool: The New Thermodynamics of Life.

"Stunning! Howard Bloom has done it again. He is certainly on to something."
Peter Corning, Director, Institute for the Study of Complex Systems, President, International Society For the Systems Sciences, author of The Synergism Hypothesis: a theory of progressive evolution and Nature's Magic: Synergy in Evolution and the Fate of Humankind.

"Howard Bloom believes that the Leviathan, or society as an organism, is not a fanciful metaphor but an actual product of evolution. The Darwinian struggle for existence has taken place among societies, as well as among individuals within societies. We do strive as individuals, but we are also part of something larger than ourselves, with a complex physiology and mental life that we carry out but only dimly understand. With this bold vision of evolution and human behavior, Bloom has raced ahead of the timid scientific herd."
David Sloan Wilson, co-author of Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior

"Bloom paints a spirited and wide ranging picture of the importance of information sharing and other forms of cooperation in organisms ranging from bacteria to humans. Arguments on group vs. individual selection are normally conducted in dense prose, but Bloom's overview is high, swift, and enjoyable."
Peter J. Richerson, Department of Environmental Science and Policy, UC Davis; co-author (with Robert Boyd), Culture and the Evolutionary Process

"My head is still spinning from so much eloquence and content. Howard Bloom says with detail and clarity those things which bite the soul."
Valerius Geist, President Wildlife Heritage Ltd., founding Programme Director for Environmental Science, University of Calgary, author of Life Strategies, Human Evolution, Environmental Design. Towards a Biological Theory of Health.

"As someone who has spent 40 years in psychology with a long-standing interest in evolution, I'll just assimilate Howard Bloom's accomplishment and my amazement."
David Smillie, Visiting Professor of Zoology, Duke University

"A fascinating new evolutionary theory which could deeply change our view of life, and a new worldview which could radically change our interpretation of social structures."
Florian Roetzer, editor, TelepolisDigitale Weltentwürfe. Streifzüge durch die Netzkultur and Megamaschine Wissen.

"You have not lived until you have interacted with Howard Bloom. He offers sweeping looks at similar functional patterns of organization at cellular, neural, social, and cosmic levels, combining them with powerful insights on social history and movements in human thoughts and rituals."
James Brody, Ph.D., Founder, Clinical Sociobiology, organizer "Healing The Moral Animal" seminars, sponsored by The Cape Cod Institute, Albert Einstein Medical College of Yeshiva University

"The interesting inte

Baker & Taylor
Explores how plants and animals have evolved together since the big bang, describing a network of life on Earth and offering previously unrecognized strands of interconnectedness.

Book News
Writing for the layman, evolutionist Bloom, argues for an interpretation of group evolution which would treat all of evolution and life on earth as the workings of an interspecies mass mind. He compares individual organisms to individual neurons, societal groupings to neural networks, and so on. Much of the work seems to be based on analogy, for instance when he points to a study in which birds which failed to master their environment tended to become less socially successful within their flocks and also tended to become less healthy and die earlier. This is then compared to the inefficient neuron, which commits cellular "suicide." The upshot of Bloom's thesis is that sociability, information solving, and problem solving are inherent parts of evolution which have existed since well before what we know as life originated. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)

Baker
& Taylor

Introduces the controversial theory of "group selection" in which all life on earth is portrayed as a macro-community of symbiotic organisms working together for the benefit of all. By the author of The Lucifer Principle.

Publisher: New York : Wiley, c2000
ISBN: 9780471295846
0471295841
Branch Call Number: 576.8 BLO
Characteristics: 370 p. ; 24 cm

Opinion

From the critics


Community Activity

Comment

Add a Comment

a
AnnetteLee
Oct 16, 2011

Excellent book. Certainly gives you something to consider.

Age

Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.

Summary

Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.

Notices

Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.

Quotes

Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Recommendations

Subject Headings

  Loading...

Find it at DPL

  Loading...
[]
[]
To Top