RE: Group Selection

Nick Rose (
Mon, 15 Feb 1999 13:04:00 -0500 (EST)

From: Nick Rose <>
To: JOM-EMIT Discussion List <>
Subject: RE: Group Selection
Date: Mon, 15 Feb 1999 13:04:00 -0500 (EST)

Derek Wrote:

>The Hutterite example is slightly complicated by the fact
>that they are considerably inbred, (one of the reasons why
>they are such a genetic 'goldmine' for clinical
>geneticists). This may however lead to conditions where
>genetic selection of 'altruism alleles' (should such
>things exist - I'm not arguing that they do) will occur.

I think Wilson and Sober were implying that everyone was
genetically pre-disposed to groupish behaviour whenever the
environment allowed it to flourish (e.g. by punishing
defectors). I can see how it could become concentrated by
the positive fdbk loop you describe - but is step 1
memetic? Or, as Wilson and Sober suggest, we are all
'Hutterites' in the right set of circumstances?

Nick Rose
"University of the West of England"

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