Cultural Evolution: How Darwinian Theory Can Explain Human Culture and Synthesize the Social Sciences

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9780226520438: Cultural Evolution: How Darwinian Theory Can Explain Human Culture and Synthesize the Social Sciences

Charles Darwin changed the course of scientific thinking by showing how evolution accounts for the stunning diversity and biological complexity of life on earth. Recently, there has also been increased interest in the social sciences in how Darwinian theory can explain human culture. Covering a wide range of topics, including fads, public policy, the spread of religion, and herd behavior in markets, Alex Mesoudi shows that human culture is itself an evolutionary process that exhibits the key Darwinian mechanisms of variation, competition, and inheritance. This cross-disciplinary volume focuses on the ways cultural phenomena can be studied scientifically - from theoretical modeling to lab experiments, archaeological fieldwork to ethnographic studies - and shows how apparently disparate methods can complement one another to the mutual benefit of the various social science disciplines. Along the way, this book reveals how new insights arise from looking at culture from an evolutionary angle. "Cultural Evolution" provides a thought-provoking argument that Darwinian evolutionary theory can both unify different branches of inquiry and enhance understanding of human behavior.

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  Alex Mesoudi is a lecturer in psychology at Queen Mary, University of London. He is the author or coauthor of articles in such leading journals as Behavioral and Brain Sciences, Evolution, and Psychological Review.


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ALEX MESOUDI
Editore: Univ of Chicago
ISBN 10: 0226520439 ISBN 13: 9780226520438
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Descrizione libro Univ of Chicago. Condizione libro: BRAND NEW. BRAND NEW Hardcover A Brand New Quality Book from a Full-Time Bookshop in business since 1992!. Codice libro della libreria 2093346

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Mesoudi, Alex.
Editore: University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London (2011)
ISBN 10: 0226520439 ISBN 13: 9780226520438
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Descrizione libro University of Chicago Press, Chicago and London, 2011. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. 280 pages. Hardcover with dustjacket. New book. SOCIAL SCIENCE. Charles Darwin changed the course of scientific thinking by showing how evolution accounts for the stunning diversity and biological complexity of life on earth. Recently, there has also been increased interest in the social sciences in how Darwinian theory can explain human culture. Covering a wide range of topics, including fads, public policy, the spread of religion, and herd behavior in markets, Alex Mesoudi shows that human culture is itself an evolutionary process that exhibits the key Darwinian mechanisms of variation, competition, and inheritance. This cross-disciplinary volume focuses on the ways cultural phenomena can be studied scientificallyÑfrom theoretical modeling to lab experiments, archaeological fieldwork to ethnographic studiesÑand shows how apparently disparate methods can complement one another to the mutual benefit of the various social science disciplines. Along the way, the book reveals how new insights arise from looking at culture from an evolutionary angle. Cultural Evolution provides a thought-provoking argument that Darwinian evolutionary theory can both unify different branches of inquiry and enhance understanding of human behavior. "While much of modern behavioral and social science treats individuals as autonomous agents, it is absolutely clear that the way we think and act is enormously influenced by the culture in which we live. It also is clear that the major elements of modern cultureÑscience, technology, law, music, and religionÑhave evolved over time in a quite concrete sense of the term. Mesoudi makes these arguments very well and his book is a very good read."ÑRichard R. Nelson, Columbia University "With an engaging, well-informed and clearly written discussion of the evolution of culture, Cultural Evolution is also vital reading for those wishing to understand how the social sciences can and must evolve."ÑGeoffrey M. Hodgson, University of Hertfordshire "For just over a quarter century, scattered groups of renegade evolutionary social scientists have been quietly hammering away in the remote corners of anthropology, archaeology, biology, psychology, and economics to forge a fully Darwinian approach to culture. In elegantly assembling and synthesizing these disparate and often highly technical efforts, Mesoudi has turned on the lights and put out the welcome mat: the interdisciplinary science of culture for the twenty-first century is open for business." Ñ Joseph Henrich, University of British Columbia (Key Words: Cultural Evolution, Darwinian Theory, Human Culture, Social Sciences, Alex Mesoudi, Ethnography). book. Codice libro della libreria 73936X1

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ISBN 10: 0226520439 ISBN 13: 9780226520438
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Descrizione libro Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria 12543128-n

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Alex Mesoudi
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ISBN 10: 0226520439 ISBN 13: 9780226520438
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Descrizione libro University Of Chicago Press, 2011. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0226520439

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