Are humans fundamentally decent?
‘Most people deep down are pretty decent but power corrupts,’ argues historian and author Rutger Bregman.
For centuries, philosophers and historians from Machiavelli to Thucydides to Thomas Hobbes have said human beings are primarily motivated by self-interest, inherently competitive, or even born evil.
This idea has permeated Western culture for centuries and influenced major social, economic and foreign policy decision-making.
But Rutger Bregman, a Dutch historian and author, challenges this conventional wisdom and believes people are, well, actually fundamentally pretty decent. His latest book, Humankind: A Hopeful History, proposes a new worldview predicated on what he refers to as “survival of the friendliest”.
On UpFront, Marc Lamont Hill talks to Rutger Bregman about why he believes history should make us hopeful about the future of humanity.