"Debra Lieberman and Carlton Patrick have eloquently exposed a rather unreliable bug in human nature: a tendency we have to equate disgust with moral disapproval. Just because something is yucky to us, we tend to jump to the conclusion that it is morally wrong. This is a dangerous basis for law making, and evolutionary psychology can help to explain our own irrationality to us."-- Matt Ridley, author of The Red Queen and The Evolution of Everything
"Objection is a fascinating investigation of the complex relationship between the psychology of disgust and the legal process. Lieberman and Patrick's vivacious and original analysis shows why ancient moral intuitions are a bad basis for making judicial decisions. This elegant integration of evolutionary psychology and legal theory would be important at any time. It is all the more valuable now when divisive politics are increasingly jeopardizing legal protections for the vilified and powerless."-- Richard Wrangham, Ruth B. Moore Professor of Biological Anthropology, Department of Human Evolutionary Biology, Harvard University, and author of Demonic Males and Catching Fire
"Objection is fascinating in so many ways. It explains an intriguing and far from-obvious discovery about our emotional makeup. It explores the conceptual relationships among issues in psychology, morality, and jurisprudence with precision and clarity. And it is enlivened with unforgettable cultural practices, legal cases, and scientific discoveries. This book will stand as a landmark in how to apply our growing knowledge about human nature to issues in the law."-- Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University, and author of How the Mind Works and Enlightenment Now
"Ever wonder why some people feel disgusted and why disgust matters? When people think something is gross, they think it must be wrong. Disgust plays an important role in regulating sex, morality, pornography and myriad matters in the legal world. Nowhere has this case been made more convincingly than in Lieberman and Patrick's terrific book, Objection."-- Elizabeth Loftus, Distinguished Professor of Social Ecology, and Professor of Law and Cognitive Science, University of California, Irvine
"Lieberman (Psychology/Univ. of Miami) and Patrick (Law/Univ. of Central Florida) link together the universal human revulsion at things such as rotting food and diseased flesh with our sense of moral conviction, particularly regarding different types of sexual behavior...The result is an occasionally gross but always engrossing account of how the mind cobbles together seemingly self-evident attitudes out of repurposed, subconscious mental processes. A stimulating treatise on how lofty ideals can grow from primitive, unreliable urges."--Kirkus Reviews (starred review)
Debra Lieberman is a Professor of Psychology at the University of Miami, where she is co-director of the Evolution and Human Behavior Laboratory. Dr. Lieberman is a leading researcher in the area of human cognition and behavior from an evolutionary perspective.Carlton Patrick, JD, PhD, is an Assistant Professor of Legal Studies at the University of Central Florida.