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The Cultural Animal

When compared to other animals, humans are in a category of animal that happens to have only one member: us. Many animals are solitary, coming together only for mating. Quite a few kinds of animals are social, living in groups, with some degree of coordination and cooperation, and often having social structures such as a dominance hierarchy. Human collective behavior is indeed social, but we are cultural animals, and differ from other social animals in ways that are quite important to us. In particular, we have a unique reliance on cumulative culture mediated by language. We also show uniquely high levels of cooperation between unrelated individuals. See the book The Cultural Animal (book).

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analysis/social/cultural_animal.txt · Last modified: 2013/11/07 13:06 by ram