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Homicide Rate

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Hanging Outside Newgate Prison. Credit: Wikimedia Commons
In England, executions peaked between 1500 and 1750 at 1 to 2% of all men of each generation. Were there genetic consequences? Were propensities for violence being removed from the gene pool? Did the English population become kinder and gentler? Such is the argument I made in a recent paper with Henry Harpending. In this... Read More
Homicide rates seem to correlate with the recentness of state formation and the imposition of the state\
Henry Harpending and I have written a paper on the historical decline of personal violence in European societies. It has just been published in the journal Evolutionary Psychology. I wrote the following press release: While war has always been with us, personal violence has been declining in Western societies over the last millennium. Is this... Read More
A burning car during the 2005 riots.  Credit: Strologoff at Wikimedia Commons
The gruesome attack on Charlie Hebdo has earned condemnation around the world. It has been called "cowardly" and "evil" by Barack Obama, "a barbaric act" by Stephen Harper, and an "infamy" by François Hollande. Yes, violence is serious. It's a crime when done by an individual and war when done by a country. It's a... Read More
In a recent post, Fred Reed asks: The short answer is that any killing, for whatever reason, increases the likelihood of killing for other reasons. One exception is self-defence, but that's not done for pleasure. Another exception is capital punishment, but that, too, is not done for pleasure. More to the point, no single citizen... Read More
IQ, height, and homicide rate in Japan (red = lowest value, light blue = highest value) (Kura, 2013). The longer and harsher the winter, the greater the need for cognition and male solidarity? The Japanese are descended from the intermixture 2900 to 1500 years ago of indigenous hunter-gatherers, the Jomon people, with incoming farmers from... Read More
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