I hold deep admiration for the great pioneering work of Dr. Judith Hand for a world without war which is possible when people believe passionately and work for it. We can create for our children safe, secure, and healthy communities free from violence. Shift: The Beginning of War, The Ending of War explains “Why?” and “How?” Mairead Maguire Nobel Peace Laureate
Judith Hand marshals knowledge and insight from biological, cultural, and political sciences to argue persuasively that now is the time in human development to extinguish the fires of war. Not only does Dr. Hand demonstrate that such a mammoth shift of human spirit and politics is possible, in fact crucial to human survival, but she invites each and every one of us who cares about the future of the human family to take part in this historical psychological, social, and institutional shift toward resolving differences through law with justice instead of bullets and bombs. Douglas P. Fry, Ph.D. Professor of Anghropology, University of Alabama, Birmingham, AL Author of Beyond War: The Human Potential for Peace Editor of War, Peace, and Human Nature
On a level with Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring, Shift raises the questions and sets the agenda for future studies. The depth and breadth of knowledge in Shift makes it essential reading for anyone interested in war and the possibilities of peace. From a biological and anthropological perspective, this remarkable book challenges myths surrounding the more traditional understanding of why we, as a species, make war and our propensity for violence. Shift offers grounds for hope that we may be close to permanently ending our love affair with war. Sean English, Ph.D. Former Director of Saor-Ollscoil (The Free University of Ireland 2000-2007) Convener, Peace Theories Commission, International Peace Research Association (IPRA) Academic Director, National College of Business Administration (NCBA) Author of The Collapse of the War System (2007)
The scientific method has changed our moral landscape. Before we knew how to find out why we behave the way we do, we lived in a state of ignorance. Evolution, a blind and amoral process, shaped us to want and need certain things in order to reproduce." With these words, Judith Hand goes to core of the any debate on the origins of conflict and war. Judith Hand brings the all important woman's perspective - a perspective central to understanding the origins of war - and more importantly, the means to avoid war. Malcolm Potts, Ph.D. Professor, Population and Family Planning, UC Berkeley Co-Author, Sex and War
In Shift: The Beginning of War, The Ending of War, Judith Hand has written a book for the ages, and our time on earth might be shorter than we’d like if we don’t heed her warnings and follow her outlines to a world free of war…forever! Many of us have been waiting years to read a book like this. Only a biologist understands the dangers of ignoring the implacable elements of evolved human nature. She demonstrates that the current century blesses us with a rare but narrowing opportunity to end war. Do it now or it may be too late. I heed her rallying cry and hope you join us. Clarence “Sonny” Williams Sr. Executive, Commercial Insurance Industry
Judith Hand’s Shift: The Beginning of War, The Ending of War offers meaningful insights on a topic of great importance for all of humanity: why we go to war and what can be done to avoid war. She brings to bear a biologist’s training and perspective and years of research and thought. The notion that we might actually be able to end war may seem—may in fact be—utopian, but Dr. Hand lays out a strong case that this achievement is possible. This argument deserves widespread attention. Shift will be an important book and deserves publication by a major publishing house. Robert S. McElvaine Professor of History Millsaps College Author, Eve’s Seed: Biology, the Sexes and the Course of History
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Why We Make War
Part I - Introduction
Chapter 1 - Why I Wrote This Book
Part II - Why We Make War
Chapter 2 - Psychological Causes of War Chapter 3 - Proximate Causes of War Chapter 4 - Ultimate Causes of War
Part III - The Beginning - Haave We Always Made War?
Chapter 5 - Bonobos, Chimpanzees, and Ardi Chapter 6 - Man the Warrior or Humans the Cooperators Chapter 7 - The Unintended Consequences of Settled Living
Part IV - Women: Power and War
Chapter 8 - Matriarchy? Chapter 9 - Women as Warriors
How We Can End War Part V - The Plan
Chapter 10 - Cornerstones of a Campaign to End War
Part VI - Ground for Hope
Chapter 11 - We Can Change and Change Rapidly
Part VI - The End Game
Chapter 12 - Pulling Elements of the Plan Together Chapter 13 - Summing it All Up
Table 1 – Simple vs. Complex Hunter-Gatherers Table 2 – Reasons Women Took Up Arms Table 3 – Conquerors or Revolutionaries Appendix I – Organizations Associated with the Ending War Cornerstones Appendix II – Pinker’s Better Angels and the AFWW 9 Cornerstones. Compares the five major factors put forward by Steven Pinker in his recent book The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence is Declining with the 9 Cornerstones described in Shift as being essentials for ending war, looking for similarities. The rationale is that if we find that two very different approaches to this complex problem arrive at the same conclusion as to what is vital to end war, it bolsters our confidence that these particular challenges are indeed critical. Appendix III – Douglas Fry’s Life Without War and the AFWW 9 Cornerstones. Compares six essential shared characteristics of three peace systems Douglas Fry describes in his Science article “Life Without War” with the 9 Cornerstones described in Shift as being essentials for ending war, looking for similarities. The rationale is that if we find that two very different approaches to this complex problem arrive at the same conclusion as to what is vital to end war, if bolsters our confidence that these particular challenges are indeed critical. Bibliography About the Author Index
Below are chapter summaries:
Part I - Why We Make War
Chapter 1 - Why I Wrote This Book Explains the motivation for writing Shift and why the global community needs a major paradigm shift in how we resolve major conflicts. The approach Shift takes to the subject of war is strongly biological, so a recounting of my training and experience leads to an illustrative, real-world example of the relationship of genes to behavior—the responses of male Laughing Gulls to an extremely altered (new) breeding environment. Concludes with a preview of subjects to be covered in the book's chapters.
Chapter 2 – Psychological Causes of War War is defined as used in Shift and distinguished from murder, revenge killings, raiding, dueling, or ritualized juridical “battles.” The causes of war can be studied on three levels: psychological causation, proximate causation, and ultimate causation. This chapter briefly reviews psychological causation, including a definition of “warmonger” and issues of group emotions and war, and masculinity and war.
Chapter 3 – Proximate Causes of War Proximate causation is explored, the question being, what are the immediate triggers for wars? Twelve of many theories historically offered as the proximate causes of war are highlighted. Stressed is that there are many such causes and addressing them will be integral to a plan for ending war, the cornerstones of which are to be presented in subsequent chapters. Peace, often thought to be war’s opposite, is defined, and an explanation is offered for why a campaign to end war is not the same as waging peace.
Chapter 4 – Ultimate Causes of War Ultimate causation refers to the biological roots of war. This is the longest causation discussion and reflects Shift’s biological orientation. Highlighted are evolved biological differences between men and women in how they relate to using physical violence. The differences are the result of reproductive pressures and priorities caused by the fact that females of all species produce a limited number of eggs and that human females can bear and rear a limited number of offspring compared to human males. The chapter reviews the link between genes and observed behavior, and how traits of men and women can be compared using bell curves. After reviewing relevant neurobiology and observed behavioral differences between human males and females, a “female preference for social stability” hypothesis is presented to explain why war is overwhelmingly a male preoccupation and activity, and ways to test this hypothesis are suggested. Aggression is defined, and positive aspects of human aggression are briefly mentioned. Stressed is that to be successful in achieving the goal to end war we need to understand our biology as well as our cultures.
Chapter 5 – Bonobos, Chimpanzees, and Ardi Chapters 5, 6, and 7 plunge into questions such as: Have humans always made war? If we did not, when did we begin and why? Chapter 5 examines relevant behavior and anatomy of close relatives (chimpanzees and bonobos), and physical characteristics of a very ancient ancestor, Ardipithecus ramidus.
Chapter 6 –Man the Warrior or Humans the Cooperators Continues exploration of when we started making war. The work of anthropologist Sarah Hrdy on the origins of cooperation and empathy are reviewed, seeking to determine whether some survival or reproductive advantage provided by killing fellow humans (war) explains why we developed impressive abilities to cooperate—often called a “man-the-warrior” hypothesis? A contrary hypothesis is offered that within nomadic foraging groups of early humans, dispersal, not war, was favored by evolution as the means to resolve serious conflicts and that cooperation, not killing in wars, is what has made this species of Homo so successful – the “humans as cooperators” model.
Chapter 7 –Unintended Consequences of Settled Living Current day nomadic hunter-gatherers/nomadic foragers (nomadic HGs) are the best models for how human ancestors lived for roughly the first 200,000 years of our species known existence. [only roughly 10,000 years ago did humans begin to take up settled living] Relevant work of several scholars is reviewed to establish early that nomadic HGs are not peaceful utopias without conflict or violence. They can display male-male, male-female, and female-female fighting, which overwhelmingly does not, however, result in deaths. Homicides, although not common, do occur, as well as executions of murderers; it is suggested that execution may have been the selection pressure underlying the known human aversion to indiscriminant, face-to-face killing of other humans: we do not kill others who have not done us a serious harm. Looking deeper, nomadic HGs overwhelmingly do not make war. Settled HGs do. Several societal features of these two different types of HGs—nomadic and settled—are compared. Settled living and increased population density tend to correlate with the origin of war. The shift to settled living also correlates, over long periods of time, with reduced influence of women in public affairs—which had been egalitarian in nomadic HG societies—to the emergence of the many forms of patriarchy that have characterized the historical record. Two additional hypotheses relating to a male need to establish a “masculine” identity are also described as potential contributors to war’s origins. Fossil evidence for war’s origins is reviewed. Finally, it is postulated that a shift in social structure that accompanies settled living—the decline in status of women—is an enabler of war.
Chapter 8 – Matriarchy? Chapters 8 and 9 tackle a seeming contradiction: women tend to avoid physical violence, but under some conditions, they engage in it or encourage men to engage in it. Solving this puzzle entails looking at how women use power and how this is related to matrilocal or patrilocal residence. Also examined in this chapter is the effect of “feminization” on the recent overall decline in human violence documental by, for example, Joshua Goldstein and Steven Pinker. Pinker stresses the rise of “reason” during the Enlightenment as an important factor in this recent decline. A contrasting suggestion is made that the rise of “romanticism,”—including “feminine” traits such as empathy—is equally likely to be responsible for this decline. A case is made that increasing influence of women in Western societies may be an important, overlooked, contributor to this decline.
Chapter 9 – Women as Warriors The puzzle of women and war is solved when we understand that women do not oppose war per se: they are adapted to prefer social stability. If they can be convinced that to keep their community safe, secure, and stable, it will be necessary to make war, women will support preemptive war by the men. If necessary, women will serve, and serve heroically, in battle. Examples are provided. A simple exercise comparing historical examples of the motivations of women and men who have been warriors illustrates the general principle that the motivation of women serving in battle is for defense, not offense. Two major reasons why women support war are explored: Cycle of Defense (Revenge) and Raids for Resources. The chapter ends by preparing to shift gears for the second half of the book, moving from understanding why we make war and the role of women in deciding to make war to how we can end war. A successful campaign to end war will require:
Action directed to nine cornerstones or battlefronts (tackling proximate causes),
A directed effort against the war machine—a battle plan.
Part II - How We Can End War
Chapter 10 – Cornerstones of a Campaign to End War The principle is put forward and explained that to create a just, ecologically sustainable, and peaceful future, abolishing war is foundational: the rationale is that by ending war, and through the work of doing so, we establish a social/cultural/mental environment that allows us to accomplish other desired goals. Many of these other goals address the proximate causes of war. These multitude of challenges are grouped into nine “ending-war cornerstones”: Embrace the Goal, Empower Women, Enlist Young Men, Foster Connectedness, Ensure Essential Resources, Promote Nonviolent Conflict Resolution, Provide Security and Order, Shift our Economies, and Spread Liberal Democracy. How each cornerstone relates to the goal of ending war is summarized and examples of organizations already dealing with them are provided. Stressed is that because of our biological nature, once we reach the goal of a global absence of war, we must continue to attend to all cornerstones to avoid backsliding.
Chapter 11 – Hope: We Can Change and Change Rapidly Reasons to believe that ending war is possible are presented. It begins with a consideration of two sophisticated cultures: the Minoans of ancient Crete and the modern Norwegians, cultures that illustrate features that characterize nonviolent and/or nonwarring but sophisticated cultures and illustrate that we do not need to return to a HG lifestyle to end war. Reasons are given why our time in history is uniquely poised to end war because of six major historical changes; these go back roughly 700 years to the Enlightenment and include invention of the Internet. Several examples of recent rapid human social transformations make the case that we could accomplish this huge shift in two generations or less from the time we resolve to do it.
Chapter 12 – Pulling Elements of the Plan Together All previous chapters lead to Chapter 12, a call to action to embrace a mechanism called F.A.C.E. Elements of a plan are given for a way to unite a critical mass of global citizens to directly take on and dismantle the war machine (however long it takes). [See also the essay “To Abolish War]. (link http://www.afww.org/ToAbolishWar.html) First, we need to bury the “just war” concept: if we propose to abolish war, then the time has come for our species to adopt a new paradigm (worldview) that says that all wars are unjust. Five major barriers to success of the plan are described; these will shape our choices for how to proceed. Two complimentary approaches to massive social transformation, namely Constructive Program (the work of the cornerstones) and Obstructive Program (direct action against the war machine) are described. An argument is made that Constructive Programs alone have insufficient force to dismantle the war machine. The means by which we carry out Obstructive Program—the strategy and tactics of nonviolent social protest/struggle—are reviewed. [See also the essay “To Abolish War"]. A mechanism developed and successfully used by the International Committee to Ban Landmines (ICBL) is described that can unite massive numbers of people and organizations in shared action (called “massively distributed collaboration” or “collective impact”). This offers an example of the structure and operation of the group or movement to be formed that will be able to tackle the war machine. It is tentatively named F.A.C.E. – For All Children Everywhere—because perhaps the only goal that can unite all people regardless of national boundaries, religion, race, gender, or political philosophy is a biologically based, shared love for and the desire to care for our children. The campaign strategy of F.A.C.E. is to collectively attack weak points of the war machine and, as the movement gains strength through the years, to steadily take the war machine apart. Very importantly, the campaign also functions as an awareness vehicle…to let the people of the world know that this great change is possible and that it has begun. Weak points of the war machine that could be good places for the movement’s initial combined focus are suggested (e.g., actually eliminating all nuclear weapons, establishing treaties to halt the sale of war weapons across national borders, establishing an “ending war” organizing hub within the United Nations that can coordinate the actions of F.A.C.E. partners). [See also the essay “To Abolish War"]. The chapter ends by reviewing key biological factors working for and against us as we take on this exciting and profoundly important challenge, and four critical keys to remember if we are to prevent backsliding.
Chapter 13 – Summing it All Up A brief review of how natural selection worked to end us up where we are now points out that we did not consciously choose war: the dictates of biology and needs to survive and reproduce have delivered us to this state. Now, however, we have sufficient knowledge of why we make war that we can, if we choose, alter our societies in ways that will foster its elimination. This includes changing attitudes as well as changing laws and customs, something our cultures have done many many times before: this campaign lies within our demonstrated abilities. Stressed is that the key to success will be partnership between men and women as leaders, activists, and citizens so that male and female built-in biological proclivities work for us, not against us. [See also the essay “To Abolish War"]. We have nobility within us. Our time in history is uniquely poised to make manifest this Great Shift to a future without war—and make it last.