Proceeding from the information exchange theory of style, we argue that the changing temporal and spatial distributions of mobile and parietal art in Paleolithic Europe are related aspects of a single evolutionary process: alternating selective pressures differentially favoring the expression of assertive and emblemic style over the 30–7 kyr BP interval. These pressures result from demographic and social change across the European subcontinent in the late Pleistocene and early Holocene. We develop a model of cultural selection for symbolic behavior manifest as art that proceeds from and parallels natural selection in neo‐Darwinian evolutionary theory.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Earth and Planetary Sciences(all)