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Technology as Human Social Tradition

Technology as Human Social Tradition Author Peter David Jordan
ISBN-10 9780520958333
Release 2014-11-24
Pages 424
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Technology as Human Social Tradition outlines a novel approach to studying variability and cumulative change in human technology—prominent research themes in both archaeology and anthropology. Peter Jordan argues that human material culture is best understood as an expression of social tradition. In this approach, each artifact stands as an output of a distinctive operational sequence with specific choices made at each stage in its production. Jordan also explores different material culture traditions that are propagated through social learning, factors that promote coherent lineages of tradition to form, and the extent to which these cultural lineages exhibit congruence with one another and with language history. Drawing on the application of cultural transmission theory to empirical research, Jordan develops a descent-with-modification perspective on the technology of Northern Hemisphere hunter-gatherers. Case studies from indigenous societies in Northwest Siberia, the Pacific Northwest Coast, and Northern California provide cross-cultural insights related to the evolution of material culture traditions at different social and spatial scales. This book promises new ways of exploring some of the primary factors that generate human cultural diversity in the deep past and through to the present.



Culture Evolves

Culture Evolves Author Andrew Whiten
ISBN-10 9780199608966
Release 2012
Pages 454
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Culture and cultural evolution are uniquely significant phenomena in evolutionary biology: they are products of biological evolution, yet they supplement genetic transmission with social transmission, thus achieving a certain independence from natural selection. However, cultural evolution nevertheless expresses key Darwinian processes itself and also interacts with genetic evolution. Just how culture fits into the grander framework of evolution is a big issuethough, yet one that has received relatively little scientific attention compared to, for example, genetic evolution. Culture Evolves is the outcome of a major interdisciplinarymeeting held by The Royal Society and the British Academy which explored new discoveries and controversies regarding cultural evolution - from the roots of culture in the animal kingdom to investigations of the cognitive adaptations shaping our special cultural nature. The book contains papers writeen by leading experts from the fields of ethology, behavioural ecology, primatology, comparative psychology, archaeology, anthropology, evolutionary biology and developmental psychology.



The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology and Anthropology of Hunter Gatherers

The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology and Anthropology of Hunter Gatherers Author Vicki Cummings
ISBN-10 9780191025273
Release 2014-04-24
Pages 1264
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For more than a century, the study of hunting and gathering societies has been central to the development of both archaeology and anthropology as academic disciplines, and has also generated widespread public interest and debate. The Oxford Handbook of the Archaeology and Anthropology of Hunter-Gatherers provides a comprehensive review of hunter-gatherer studies to date, including critical engagements with older debates, new theoretical perspectives, and renewed obligations for greater engagement between researchers and indigenous communities. Chapters provide in-depth archaeological, historical, and anthropological case-studies, and examine far-reaching questions about human social relations, attitudes to technology, ecology, and management of resources and the environment, as well as issues of diet, health, and gender relations - all central topics in hunter-gatherer research, but also themes that have great relevance for modern global society and its future challenges. The Handbook also provides a strategic vision for how the integration of new methods, approaches, and study regions can ensure that future research into the archaeology and anthropology of hunter-gatherers will continue to deliver penetrating insights into the factors that underlie all human diversity.



Orderly Anarchy

Orderly Anarchy Author Robert L. Bettinger
ISBN-10 9780520959194
Release 2015-01-07
Pages 312
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Orderly Anarchy delivers a provocative and innovative reexamination of sociopolitical evolution among Native American groups in California, a region known for its wealth of prehistoric languages, populations, and cultural adaptations. Scholars have tended to emphasize the development of social complexity and inequality to explain this diversity. Robert L. Bettinger argues instead that "orderly anarchy," the emergence of small, autonomous groups, provided a crucial strategy in social organization. Drawing on ethnographic and archaeological data and evolutionary, economic, and anthropological theory, he shows that these small groups devised diverse solutions to environmental, technological, and social obstacles to the intensified use of resources. This book revises our understanding of how California became the most densely populated landscape in aboriginal North America.



Learning Strategies and Cultural Evolution during the Palaeolithic

Learning Strategies and Cultural Evolution during the Palaeolithic Author Alex Mesoudi
ISBN-10 9784431553632
Release 2015-04-30
Pages 169
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This volume is motivated by the desire to explain why Neanderthals were replaced by modern humans, in terms of cultural differences between the two (sub-) species. It provides up-to-date coverage on the theory of cultural evolution as is being used by anthropologists, archaeologists, biologists and psychologists to decipher hominin cultural change and diversity during the Palaeolithic. The contributing authors are directly involved in this effort and the material presented includes novel approaches and findings. Chapters explain how learning strategies in combination with social and demographic factors (e.g., population size and mobility patterns) predict cultural evolution in a world without the printing press, television or the Internet. Also addressed is the inverse problem of how learning strategies may be inferred from actual trajectories of cultural change, for example as seen in the North American Palaeolithic. Mathematics and statistics, a sometimes necessary part of theory, are explained in elementary terms where they appear, with details relegated to appendices. Full citations of the relevant literature will help the reader to further pursue any topic of interest.



Social Learning and Innovation in Contemporary Hunter Gatherers

Social Learning and Innovation in Contemporary Hunter Gatherers Author Hideaki Terashima
ISBN-10 9784431559979
Release 2016-10-22
Pages 318
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This is the first book to examine social learning and innovation in hunter–gatherers from around the world. More is known about social learning in chimpanzees and nonhuman primates than is known about social learning in hunter–gatherers, a way of life that characterized most of human history. The book describes diverse patterns of learning and teaching behaviors in contemporary hunter–gatherers from the perspectives of cultural anthropology, ecological anthropology, biological anthropology, and developmental psychology. The book addresses several theoretical issues including the learning hypothesis which suggests that the fate of Homo sapiens and Neanderthals in the last glacial period might have been due to the differences in learning ability. It has been unequivocally claimed that social learning is intrinsically important for human beings; however, the characteristics of human learning remain under a dense fog despite innumerable studies with children from urban–industrial cultures. Controversy continues on problems such as: do hunter–gatherers teach? If so, what types of teaching occur, who does it, how often, under what contexts, and so on. The book explores the most basic and intrinsic aspects of social learning as well as the foundation of innovative activities in everyday activities of contemporary hunter–gatherer people across the earth. The book examines how hunter-gatherer core values, such as gender and age egalitarianism and extensive sharing of food and childcare are transmitted and acquired by children. Chapters are grouped into five sections: 1) theoretical perspectives of learning in hunter–gatherers, 2) modes and processes of social learning in hunter–gatherers, 3) innovation and cumulative culture, 4) play and other cultural contexts of social learning and innovation, 5) biological contexts of learning and innovation. Ideas and concepts based on the data gathered through an intensive fieldwork by the authors will give much insight into the mechanisms and meanings of learning and education in modern humans.



Gesture and Speech

Gesture and Speech Author André Leroi-Gourhan
ISBN-10 0262121735
Release 1993
Pages 431
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Combines in one volume "Technics and Language", in which anthropologist Leroi-Gourhan looks at prehistoric technology in relation to the development of cognitive and liguistic faculties, and "Memory and Rhythms", which addresses instinct and intelligence from a sociological viewpoint.



Pattern and Process in Cultural Evolution

Pattern and Process in Cultural Evolution Author Stephen Shennan
ISBN-10 0520255992
Release 2009
Pages 341
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"Archaeological data are uniquely suited to testing models of cultural evolution. This volume provides an excellent summary of the state of the art in this new field."--Robert Boyd, coauthor of "Not By Genes Alone: How Culture Transformed Human Evolution"



Guns Germs and Steel The Fates of Human Societies

Guns  Germs  and Steel  The Fates of Human Societies Author Jared Diamond
ISBN-10 9780393609295
Release 2017-03-07
Pages 528
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"Fascinating.... Lays a foundation for understanding human history."—Bill Gates In this "artful, informative, and delightful" (William H. McNeill, New York Review of Books) book, Jared Diamond convincingly argues that geographical and environmental factors shaped the modern world. Societies that had had a head start in food production advanced beyond the hunter-gatherer stage, and then developed religion --as well as nasty germs and potent weapons of war --and adventured on sea and land to conquer and decimate preliterate cultures. A major advance in our understanding of human societies, Guns, Germs, and Steel chronicles the way that the modern world came to be and stunningly dismantles racially based theories of human history. Winner of the Pulitzer Prize, the Phi Beta Kappa Award in Science, the Rhone-Poulenc Prize, and the Commonwealth club of California's Gold Medal.



On Human Nature

On Human Nature Author Michel Tibayrenc
ISBN-10 9780127999159
Release 2016-09-12
Pages 814
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On Human Nature: Biology, Psychology, Ethics, Politics, and Religion covers the present state of knowledge on human diversity and its adaptative significance through a broad and eclectic selection of representative chapters. This transdisciplinary work brings together specialists from various fields who rarely interact, including geneticists, evolutionists, physicians, ethologists, psychoanalysts, anthropologists, sociologists, theologians, historians, linguists, and philosophers. Genomic diversity is covered in several chapters dealing with biology, including the differences in men and apes and the genetic diversity of mankind. Top specialists, known for their open mind and broad knowledge have been carefully selected to cover each topic. The book is therefore at the crossroads between biology and human sciences, going beyond classical science in the Popperian sense. The book is accessible not only to specialists, but also to students, professors, and the educated public. Glossaries of specialized terms and general public references help nonspecialists understand complex notions, with contributions avoiding technical jargon. Provides greater understanding of diversity and population structure and history, with crucial foundational knowledge needed to conduct research in a variety of fields, such as genetics and disease Includes three robust sections on biological, psychological, and ethical aspects, with cross-fertilization and reciprocal references between the three sections Contains contributions by leading experts in their respective fields working under the guidance of internationally recognized and highly respected editors



Darwin s Unfinished Symphony

Darwin s Unfinished Symphony Author Kevin N. Laland
ISBN-10 9781400884872
Release 2017-02-21
Pages 464
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How culture transformed human evolution Humans possess an extraordinary capacity for cultural production, from the arts and language to science and technology. How did the human mind—and the uniquely human ability to devise and transmit culture—evolve from its roots in animal behavior? Darwin's Unfinished Symphony presents a captivating new theory of human cognitive evolution. This compelling and accessible book reveals how culture is not just the magnificent end product of an evolutionary process that produced a species unlike all others—it is also the key driving force behind that process. Kevin Laland shows how the learned and socially transmitted activities of our ancestors shaped our intellects through accelerating cycles of evolutionary feedback. The truly unique characteristics of our species—such as our intelligence, language, teaching, and cooperation—are not adaptive responses to predators, disease, or other external conditions. Rather, humans are creatures of their own making. Drawing on his own groundbreaking research, and bringing it to life with vivid natural history, Laland explains how animals imitate, innovate, and have remarkable traditions of their own. He traces our rise from scavenger apes in prehistory to modern humans able to design iPhones, dance the tango, and send astronauts into space. This book tells the story of the painstaking fieldwork, the key experiments, the false leads, and the stunning scientific breakthroughs that led to this new understanding of how culture transformed human evolution. It is the story of how Darwin's intellectual descendants picked up where he left off and took up the challenge of providing a scientific account of the evolution of the human mind.



Encyclopedia of cognitive science

Encyclopedia of cognitive science Author Lynn Nadel
ISBN-10 0333792610
Release 2003
Pages 4361
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Reviews the themes: information, information processing, representation, and computation, psychology, philosophy, linguistics, computer science, neuroscience, education, economics, evolutionary biology, anthropology.



Hunter Gatherers

Hunter Gatherers Author Robert L. Bettinger
ISBN-10 9781489975812
Release 2015-06-30
Pages 304
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Hunter-gatherer research has played a historically central role in the development of anthropological and evolutionary theory. Today, research in this traditional and enduringly vital field blurs lines of distinction between archaeology and ethnology, and seeks instead to develop perspectives and theories broadly applicable to anthropology and its many sub disciplines. In the groundbreaking first edition of Hunter-Gatherers: Archaeological and Evolutionary Theory (1991), Robert Bettinger presented an integrative perspective on hunter-gatherer research and advanced a theoretical approach compatible with both traditional anthropological and contemporary evolutionary theories. Hunter-Gatherers remains a well-respected and much-cited text, now over 20 years since initial publication. Yet, as in other vibrant fields of study, the last two decades have seen important empirical and theoretical advances. In this second edition of Hunter-Gatherers, co-authors Robert Bettinger, Raven Garvey, and Shannon Tushingham offer a revised and expanded version of the classic text, which includes a succinct and provocative critical synthesis of hunter-gatherer and evolutionary theory, from the Enlightenment to the present. New and expanded sections relate and react to recent developments—some of them the authors’ own—particularly in the realms of optimal foraging and cultural transmission theories. An exceptionally informative and ambitious volume on cultural evolutionary theory, Hunter-Gatherers, second edition, is an essential addition to the libraries of anthropologists, archaeologists, and human ecologists alike.



The Acceleration of Cultural Change

The Acceleration of Cultural Change Author R. Alexander Bentley
ISBN-10 9780262036955
Release 2017-08-18
Pages 176
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How culture evolves through algorithms rather than knowledge inherited from ancestors.



The Social Conquest of Earth

The Social Conquest of Earth Author Edward O. Wilson
ISBN-10 9780871403308
Release 2012-04-09
Pages 352
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New York Times Bestseller From the most celebrated heir to Darwin comes a groundbreaking book on evolution, the summa work of Edward O. Wilson's legendary career. Sparking vigorous debate in the sciences, The Social Conquest of Earth upends “the famous theory that evolution naturally encourages creatures to put family first” (Discover). Refashioning the story of human evolution, Wilson draws on his remarkable knowledge of biology and social behavior to demonstrate that group selection, not kin selection, is the premier driving force of human evolution. In a work that James D. Watson calls “a monumental exploration of the biological origins of the human condition,” Wilson explains how our innate drive to belong to a group is both a “great blessing and a terrible curse” (Smithsonian). Demonstrating that the sources of morality, religion, and the creative arts are fundamentally biological in nature, the renowned Harvard University biologist presents us with the clearest explanation ever produced as to the origin of the human condition and why it resulted in our domination of the Earth’s biosphere.



Ceramics Before Farming

Ceramics Before Farming Author Peter Jordan
ISBN-10 9781315432359
Release 2016-06-03
Pages 589
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A long-overdue advancement in ceramic studies, this volume sheds new light on the adoption and dispersal of pottery by non-agricultural societies of prehistoric Eurasia. Major contributions from Western Europe, Eastern Europe and Asia make this a truly international work that brings together different theories and material for the first time. Researchers and scholars studying the origins and dispersal of pottery, the prehistoric peoples or Eurasia, and flow of ancient technologies will all benefit from this book.



Hunter Gatherer Childhoods

Hunter Gatherer Childhoods Author Barry S. Hewlett
ISBN-10 9781351514149
Release 2017-07-28
Pages 483
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In the vast anthropological literature devoted to hunter-gatherer societies, surprisingly little attention has been paid to the place of hunter-gatherer children. Children often represent 40 percent of hunter-gatherer populations, thus nearly half the population is omitted from most hunter-gatherer ethnographies and research. This volume is designed to bridge the gap in our understanding of the daily lives, knowledge, and development of hunter-gatherer children.The twenty-six contributors to Hunter-Gatherer Childhoods use three general but complementary theoretical approaches--evolutionary, developmental, cultural--in their presentations of new and insightful ethnographic data. For instance, the authors employ these theoretical orientations to provide the first systematic studies of hunter-gatherer children's hunting, play, infant care by children, weaning and expressions of grief. The chapters focus on understanding the daily life experiences of children, and their views and feelings about their lives and cultural change. Chapters address some of the following questions: why does childhood exist, who cares for hunter-gatherer children, what are the characteristic features of hunter-gatherer children's development and what are the impacts of culture change on hunter-gatherer child care?The book is divided into five parts. The first section provides historical, theoretical and conceptual framework for the volume; the second section examines data to test competing hypotheses regarding why childhood is particularly long in humans; the third section expands on the second section by looking at who cares for hunter-gatherer children; the fourth section explores several developmental issues such as weaning, play and loss of loved ones; and, the final section examines the impact of sedentism and schools on hunter-gatherer children.This pioneering volume will help to stimulate further research and scholarship on hunter-gatherer childhoods, th