11-01_CultureIsAdaptation_4_-_6

11-01_CultureIsAdaptation_4_-_6 - Culture is an Adaptation...

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10/7/2011 1 Culture is an Adaptation Why study adaptations Culture is derived Why culture is adaptive How (possibly) culture evolved Evidence for the model Two more forces of cultural evolution Culture is an Adaptation Why study adaptations Culture is derived Why culture is adaptive How (possibly) culture evolved Evidence for the model Two more forces of cultural evolution What is the best way to use social information? So far how to balance social and non-social information Environment provides cues Behavior of others provides cues When should individuals depend on one or the other? What is the best way to use social information? So far how to balance social and non-social information But, the distribution of behavior among models also provides cues: Commoness: Is everybody doing it? Or, just a few? Prestige: Are cool people doing it? Or, everybody? Similarity: Are people like you doing it? Or, other kinds of people? Can use population methods to investigate how selection should shape the psychology responds to social cues Seems like selection will favor conformism Suppose naïve individual observes that one cultural variant is more common among models than alternatives Environmental variation and errors maintain variation some models don’t have best variant. But, learning, biased transmission tend to make adaptive behavior more common All things being equal, adopt the common variant because it is more likely to be adaptive Problem: what happens when environment changes? Suppose everybody is a conformist, and Environment changes Now everybody is doing the wrong thing Conformism will make that behavior attractive Won’t population get “stuck” at maladaptive equilibrium?
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10/7/2011 2 Use population thinking to find out Large population of organisms Environment has two states 1 & 2
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This note was uploaded on 10/31/2011 for the course ANTHRO 186P taught by Professor Boyd during the Fall '09 term at UCLA.

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11-01_CultureIsAdaptation_4_-_6 - Culture is an Adaptation...

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