Jonathan Gottschall is a distinguished research fellow in the English Department at Washington & Jefferson College. His research has been covered in the New York Times Magazine, the New York Times, Scientific American, the New Yorker, the Atlantic, the Chronicle of Higher Education, and on NPR. His blog, The Storytelling Animal, is featured at Psychology Today. His book, The Storytelling Animal, was a New York Times Book Review Editors' Choice selection and a finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize.
Publishers Weekly (starred review)
With humor, literary allusions, and a casual, unprepossessing style, Gottschall explores such related subjects as duels, bullying, English football, men's "love-hate" relationship to war, and violent entertainment from gladiator games to MMA." Biographile
"The Professor in the Cage is not just Gottschall's story, but a look at the history of violence itself.... you read Gottschall getting smarter and smarter about his subject as he gets closer and closer to risking his life in the cage."
"Gottschall's writing proves much smoother and easier to digest than the mayhem he undertakes in the cage. He buttresses his work, as all academics do, with 35 pages of endnotes and bibliography, attesting to the research he undertook to complement his road to the ring. The reader learns why animals fight, why women don't, and why eye contact and facial expressions often win bouts before the bell rings." Steven Pinker, Johnstone Professor of Psychology, Harvard University; and author of How the Mind Works and The Better Angels of Our Nature
"What a charming and illuminating book! With scientific acumen and literary panache, Gottschall immerses himself, and us, in an ancient part of the male psyche. Among the many treats in this book are the history of recreational fighting, a limpid explanation of sexual selection, and a sympathetic portrayal of working-class men that's worthy of a great novelist." Sam Harris, author of the New York Times bestsellers The End of Faith, The Moral Landscape, and Waking Up
"Jonathan Gottschall has written a wonderfully honest, entertaining, and insightful book about violence, manhood, courage, and the wisdom that can be gleaned from getting punched in the face. If you've ever wondered why combat is a perennial source of fascination for us, and whether this fascination can be channeled toward truly productive ends, The Professor in the Cage is the book to read."