The World

People (and economists) have long thought that humans have a basic inclination toward altruism: toward helping one another without thinking of a reward. Stephen Dubner, co-author of “SuperFreakonomics: Global Cooling, Patriotic Prostitutes, and Why Suicide Bombers Should Buy Life Insurance” tells the story of how this was called into question and how studies complicate the picture of what motivates human beings.

Sign up for our daily newsletter

Sign up for The Top of the World, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning.