Reviewed by Alice DiNizo for Readers' Favorite
"The Watchman's Rattle" takes its title from the centuries old story of every village's night watchman who would shake his wooden rattle to warn sleeping villagers of approaching trouble. And so, sociobiologist Rebecca Costa, having studied expertly the alarming trends in human evolution, current global markets, terrorism, nuclear proliferation, and failing education systems, writes to warn readers of historical patterns that are repeating themselves today, as the Mayans and the Khymers had highly developed civilizations that collapsed because beliefs and memes took over for facts and did not allow for insightful solutions. An ardent disciple of the brilliant E.O. Wilson, Rebecca Costa discusses the beliefs, the memes, that mankind resort to rather than brain power. She feels that with the problems mankind share today, we may be faced with extinction if our leaders continue to look for quick fixes rather than taking time for rational thinking. Will Costa's voice of reason be heard and understood by those in power in a world where global warming, threats of war and people's general inability to solve problems proliferate?
"The Watchman's Rattle" is a very well-written, well-edited, researched and documented treatise that everyone should read. The book's plot proceeds smoothly to its ending, and the author explains clearly what a supermeme is and gives the top five examples. Her explanation of why children are not learning to think is terrifying.