The evolutionary social psychology of religious beliefs

Behavioral and Brain Sciences 27 (6):741-741 (2004)
Atran & Norenzayan (A&N) are correct that religion is an evolutionary by-product, not an adaptation, but they do not go far enough. Once supernatural beliefs are enabled by processes they describe, numerous social-cognitive mechanisms related to attachment, social exchange, coalitional psychology, status and dominance, and kinship are crucial for explaining the specific forms religion takes and individual and cultural differences therein.
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DOI 10.1017/S0140525X04330177
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