Re: Between groups.

From: Chris Taylor (
Date: Thu 26 Feb 2004 - 10:59:39 GMT

  • Next message: Keith Henson: "RE: Between groups."

    No arguments about who stays behind to watch the pot I suppose (that was a little crass but anyway). Also there's perhaps an argument that someone with a brain, who didn't fit a standard role, would have more time for thought and observation, and additionally be motivated to find new and better ways to do tasks.

    I bet if you did the brood swap experiment on (palaeolothic) them every generation they wouldn't spot it -- genetic arguments for us are a bit irrelevant I think. The dogs have our noses, we devolved that role to them; so we have no way to assess kinship except through a chain of evidentiary observations (which is why matriarchy would have been a damned sight simpler).

    FYI whoever it was who was after some Hamilton; if you're near a library, Hamilton compiled a two-volume collection of his stuff called
    'Narrow Roads of Gene Land'. He once said he liked my poster at a conference :) Poor unfortunate bugger.

    Cheers, Chris. wrote:

    > Dans un e-mail daté du 26/02/2004 05:10:38 Paris, Madrid,
    > a écrit :
    >> >Mutual interdependence decreases the importance of the individual.
    >> I don't think so, not from a gene's viewpoint.
    > There is some evidence that people with handicaps were able to survive
    > to a rather old age in the palaeolithic and that the "tribes" were
    > supporting their survival. (sorry I can't find the articles ref. on that
    > subject) These people, some of which were carrying genetic condition
    > wouldn't have survived without the group and their genes would have
    > become extinct.
    > What would be important to understand is what was motivating the
    > "tribes" to protect an individual with a handicap.
    > There is of course the natural empathy for another human being, but
    > there may have been more, some early "religious" beliefs and rules, the
    > fact that a handicap is only one aspect of a human personality and that
    > some other aspects could be quite important to the "tribes" survival as
    > a group.
    > Each one of us using his/her own knowledge, I am working on a paper that
    > gives some clues at what may have been the "value" of people with autism
    > for a "tribe". Autism is a condition that is now consider to have strong
    > genetic components and which by its own mode of expression (poor social
    > skills, difficulties in communication and repetitive behaviors) would
    > not allow survival.
    > I have sent to a list specialized in prehistory a post that gives some
    > of these arguments.
    > Anyone interested can contact me off line.
    > Yours sincerely.
    > Paul Trehin

      Chris Taylor (
      MIAPE Project --
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