book suggestion

From: Vincent Campbell (
Date: Tue Sep 25 2001 - 15:55:11 BST

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    From: Vincent Campbell <>
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    Subject: book suggestion
    Date: Tue, 25 Sep 2001 15:55:11 +0100
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    Hiya everyone,

    Just received a copy of Lee Cronk's 'That Complex Whole: Culture and the
    Evolution of Human Behaviour' (1999, Westview Press, ISBN 0813337054)

    Cronk appears to be a cultural anthropologist not aversed to views about the
    origin of culture stemming from evolutionary theory, and is also pro-memes.
    Flicking through his bit about memes just now he seems to partly offer a
    cultural traits line, partly a mind virus line, partly a sexual selection
    line. I'll need to read it more closely to work out his position.

    Linking to the discussion about the cultural/natural position o f war, he
    does have a couple of interesting things to say about war (p80). In
    reference to the relationship between reproductive success and conformity to
    cultural practices, he refers to the apparent nature of reproductive success
    for male Yanomamo being related not to wealth or hunting skill (as it is for
    some other tribes), but from fighting prowess- particularly if they've
    killed others. He stresses that this doesn't make it a universal principle
    for reproductive success, though.

    I'm waiting on another book, that I think someone on the list recommended.
    More on that when it arrives.


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