Tag Archives: The British Enlightenment

Brooks on the “New Humanism”

We are at the cusp of a revolution in consciousness, argues author and New York Times columnist David Brooks.

This revolution could be summed in roughly as “David Hume was right: the British Enlightenment trumps its French counterpart.” Essentially, what we’ve learned is that our emotions count for much more than we ever imagined – insight that holds major implications not only for us as individuals but as Extension professionals.  Problem-solving is not just about bringing rational thought to bear on a problem.  As Hume contended, emotion informs rationality.  Even more significant, these two sides of human nature are inextricably linked.

Brooks’s TED lecture is informative, inspiring and even a little sublime, as corny as this sounds.  One caveat, though: viewing this is no substitute for reading his book “The Social Animal: The Hidden Sources of Love, Character and Achievement.”

As I said, the implications for Cooperative Extension work are profound.