David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
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Mind and Language 21 (2):137-165 (2006)
Joseph Henrich and Richard McElreath begin their survey of theories of cultural evolution with a striking historical example. They contrast the fate of the Bourke and Wills expedition — an attempt to explore some of the arid areas of inland Australia — with the routine survival of the local aboriginals in exactly the same area. That expedition ended in failure and death, despite the fact that it was well equipped, and despite the fact that those on the expedition were tough and experienced. For survival in such areas depended on accumulated local knowledge. The locals had learned how detoxify seeds before making bread from them, and how to catch the local fish. Bourke and Wills and their companions lacked this local knowledge, and died as a result (Henrich and McElreath 2003)
|Keywords||Adaptation Culture Evolution Information Memes Metaphysics|
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References found in this work BETA
Elliott Sober & David Sloan Wilson (1998). Unto Others: The Evolution and Psychology of Unselfish Behavior. Harvard University Press.
S. J. Gould & R. C. Lewontin (1994). The Spandrels of San Marco and the Panglossian Paradigm: A Critique of the Adaptationist Programme. In E. Sober (ed.), Conceptual Issues in Evolutionary Biology. The MIT Press. Bradford Books 73-90.
Dan Sperber (1996). Explaining Culture: A Naturalistic Approach. Oxford: Basil Blackwell.
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Citations of this work BETA
Krist Vaesen (2012). The Cognitive Bases of Human Tool Use. Behavioral and Brain Sciences 35 (4):203-262.
Kim Sterelny (2010). Moral Nativism: A Sceptical Response. Mind and Language 25 (3):279-297.
Pierre-Luc Germain (2012). Cancer Cells and Adaptive Explanations. Biology and Philosophy 27 (6):785-810.
Derek Hodgson & Jan Verpooten (2015). The Evolutionary Significance of the Arts: Exploring the By-Product Hypothesis in the Context of Ritual, Precursors, and Cultural Evolution. Biological Theory 10 (1):73-85.
Marion Godman (2014). The Special Science Dilemma and How Culture Solves It. Australasian Journal of Philosophy 93 (3):1-18.
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