Cultural transmission and the evolution of cooperative behavior

Robert Boyd, Peter J. Richerson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

92 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Sociobiological theory predicts that humans should not cooperate with large groups of unrelated individuals. This prediction is based on genetic models that show that selection acting on variation between large unrelated groups will generally be much weaker than selection acting on variation between individuals. Recently, several authors have presented related models of human evolution that integrate cultural and genetic transmission of behavior. We show that in such models group selection is potentially a strong force. Data on ethnocentrism is examined in the context of these results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)325-351
Number of pages27
JournalHuman Ecology
Volume10
Issue number3
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 1982
Externally publishedYes

Fingerprint

cooperative behavior
group selection
ethnocentrism
human evolution
Group
individual variation
prediction
Cultural Transmission

Keywords

  • altruism
  • cultural inheritance
  • dual inheritance
  • group selection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Anthropology
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Environmental Science (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Cultural transmission and the evolution of cooperative behavior. / Boyd, Robert; Richerson, Peter J.

In: Human Ecology, Vol. 10, No. 3, 09.1982, p. 325-351.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Boyd, Robert ; Richerson, Peter J. / Cultural transmission and the evolution of cooperative behavior. In: Human Ecology. 1982 ; Vol. 10, No. 3. pp. 325-351.
@article{4528d31b79034d8ba767d188b33d5221,
title = "Cultural transmission and the evolution of cooperative behavior",
abstract = "Sociobiological theory predicts that humans should not cooperate with large groups of unrelated individuals. This prediction is based on genetic models that show that selection acting on variation between large unrelated groups will generally be much weaker than selection acting on variation between individuals. Recently, several authors have presented related models of human evolution that integrate cultural and genetic transmission of behavior. We show that in such models group selection is potentially a strong force. Data on ethnocentrism is examined in the context of these results.",
keywords = "altruism, cultural inheritance, dual inheritance, group selection",
author = "Robert Boyd and Richerson, {Peter J.}",
year = "1982",
month = "9",
doi = "10.1007/BF01531189",
language = "English (US)",
volume = "10",
pages = "325--351",
journal = "Human Ecology",
issn = "0300-7839",
publisher = "Springer Science + Business Media",
number = "3",

}

TY - JOUR

T1 - Cultural transmission and the evolution of cooperative behavior

AU - Boyd, Robert

AU - Richerson, Peter J.

PY - 1982/9

Y1 - 1982/9

N2 - Sociobiological theory predicts that humans should not cooperate with large groups of unrelated individuals. This prediction is based on genetic models that show that selection acting on variation between large unrelated groups will generally be much weaker than selection acting on variation between individuals. Recently, several authors have presented related models of human evolution that integrate cultural and genetic transmission of behavior. We show that in such models group selection is potentially a strong force. Data on ethnocentrism is examined in the context of these results.

AB - Sociobiological theory predicts that humans should not cooperate with large groups of unrelated individuals. This prediction is based on genetic models that show that selection acting on variation between large unrelated groups will generally be much weaker than selection acting on variation between individuals. Recently, several authors have presented related models of human evolution that integrate cultural and genetic transmission of behavior. We show that in such models group selection is potentially a strong force. Data on ethnocentrism is examined in the context of these results.

KW - altruism

KW - cultural inheritance

KW - dual inheritance

KW - group selection

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/record.url?scp=0020470415&partnerID=8YFLogxK

UR - http://www.scopus.com/inward/citedby.url?scp=0020470415&partnerID=8YFLogxK

U2 - 10.1007/BF01531189

DO - 10.1007/BF01531189

M3 - Article

VL - 10

SP - 325

EP - 351

JO - Human Ecology

JF - Human Ecology

SN - 0300-7839

IS - 3

ER -