The Public Interest

On Gender

James Q. Wilson

Summer 1993

NATURE HAS PLAYED a cruel trick on humankind. It has made males essential for reproduction but next to useless for nurturance. Yet if children are to do more than survive, they must be part of a community. For such a complex social organization to develop, men must be induced to provide resources and act cooperatively. Living in a community requires of them sympathy, prudence, and above all, commitment. 

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