On the Origin of Societies by Natural Selection
Kinship, religion, and economy were not "natural" to humans, nor to species of apes that had to survive on the African savanna. Society from its very beginnings involved an uneasy necessity that often stood in conflict with humans' ape ancestry; these tensions only grew along with later, more complex-eventually colossal-sociocultural systems. The ape in us was not extinguished, nor obviated, by culture; indeed, our ancestry continues to place pressures on individuals and their sociocultural creations. Not just an exercise in history, this pathbreaking book dispels many myths about the beginning of society to gain new understandings of the many pressures on societies today.
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actors agrarian societies animals apes and humans areas bases of power brain bureaucracies cage capacity capital chimpanzees coercive complex corporate units create cult structures culture differentiation distribution division of labor early hominids economic surplus elites emerged Émile Durkheim enhanced erectus evolutionary evolved ape foraging forces forest fossil gorillas habitats hierarchy hominids Homo Homo erectus horde horticultural horticultural societies horticulturalists Human Evolution human societies hunter-gatherers hunting and gathering incest increase individuals Industrial and Post-Industrial industrial societies inequality institutional domains kinship language larger last common ancestor males and females mammals markets Maryanski Miocene mobility natural selection neocortex neuroanatomy niches nuclear family offspring Old World monkeys orangutans organization patterns polity population positive emotions post-industrial societies pre-adaptation prestige primate production prosimians religion religious rituals selection pressures sexual social bonds social structures sociocultural solidarity species subcortical supernatural symbols totems traits Turner University Press weak-tie Westermarck effect