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The psychologist’s fascinating study of friendship finds that the quality of our relationships determines our health, happiness and chance of a long life
You may not have heard of Robin Dunbar. But you will, perhaps, know of his work. Dunbar, now emeritus professor of evolutionary psychology at Oxford University, is the man who first suggested that there may be a cognitive limit to the number of people with whom you can comfortably maintain stable social relationships – or, as Stephen Fry put it on the TV show QI, the number of people “you would not hesitate to go and sit with if you happened to see them at 3am in the departure lounge at Hong Kong airport”. Human beings, Dunbar found when he conducted his research in the 1990s, typically have 150 friends in general (people who know us on sight, and with whom we have a history), of whom just five can usually be described as intimate.
Friendship, as Dunbar reveals, requires investment. It 'dies fast' when not maintained
An account of a teenage affair with a teacher feels like therapy and lacks deep thinkingTeenagers ar...
A ‘Houellebecquian manifesto on art’ will transport you across the world in the company of three s...
When the journalist set out to write about the men who work on the North Sea oil rigs, she didn’t e...
A daring, dizzying attempt to connect Keats and F Scott Fitzgerald has plenty to take pleasure inIn ...
This magnificent biography gets to the heart of Bacon as an artist and a man A year before his death...
In this latest instalment of the melancholy Paul series, our nerdish hero is lonely and adrift – as...
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