Evolutionizing Aesthetics [Review of the book The aesthetic animal, by H. Høgh-Olesen]

Michael Woodley of Menie, Matthew Alexandar Sarraf

Research output: Contribution to journalBook/Film/Article review


Reviews the book, The Aesthetic Animal by Henrik Høgh-Olesen (2019). This very concise book attempts to produce an integrative theory of the origin of aesthetics in human life, drawing on research from numerous domains, including archaeology, anthropology, biology, evolutionary psychology, and “neuro-aesthetics.” The main strength of this work is that it serves as an excellent overview of developments in various fields, showcasing the ways in which research from a variety of disciplines can be relevant to the construction of evolutionary narratives about the origins of behavior. The reviewer concludes that there is good reason to accept some evolutionary hypothesis once such predictions receive strong support. For this reason, The Aesthetic Animal could have made a stronger contribution by setting aside a chapter to discuss novel testable predictions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)312-313
Number of pages2
JournalEvolutionary Behavioral Sciences
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2021


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