Emotional Intelligence is a pathfinding book about this important facet of being human. Daniel Goleman, who covers behavioral and brain sciences for The New York Times, begins with an assessment of the new discoveries about "the brain's emotional architecture." He moves on to the rise in problems in families, intimate relationships, and society at large stemming from deficiencies in emotional intelligence, which he defines as "a set of traits including self-control, zeal and persistence, and the ability to motivate oneself."

Goleman reports an increase in violent or depressed individuals who have difficulty controlling anger, relating to others, or just carrying on from day to day. Families and schools, he concludes, are going to have to take greater responsibility for tutoring the young in the emotional arts of empathy, altruism, and cooperation. Emotional Intelligence starts with science but ends with an ethical call to action.