Are humans by nature hierarchical or egalitarian? Hierarchy in the Forest addresses this question by examining the evolutionary origins of social and political behavior. Christopher Boehm, an anthropologist whose fieldwork has focused on the political arrangements of human and nonhuman primate groups, postulates that egalitarianism is in effect a hierarchy in which the weak combine forces to dominate the strong.
The political flexibility of our species is formidable: we can be quite egalitarian, we can be quite despotic. Hierarchy in the Forest traces the roots of these contradictory traits in chimpanzee, bonobo, gorilla, and early human societies. Boehm looks at the loose group structures of hunter-gatherers, then at tribal segmentation, and finally at present-day governments to see how these conflicting tendencies are reflected.
Hierarchy in the Forest claims new territory for biological anthropology and evolutionary biology by extending the domain of these sciences into a crucial aspect of human political and social behavior. This book will be a key document in the study of the evolutionary basis of genuine altruism.
"Sinopsis" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.
Christopher Boehm is Professor of Anthropology and Director of the Jane Goodall Research Center at the University of Southern California.From Publishers Weekly:
Boehm, professor of anthropology and director of the Jane Goodall Research Center at the University of Southern California, ranges broadly in his quest to determine the evolutionary origins of social and political behavior. Combining an exhaustive ethnographic survey of human societies from groups of hunter-gatherers to contemporary residents of the Balkans with a detailed analysis of the behavioral attributes of nonhuman primates (chimpanzees, gorillas, bonobos), Boehm focuses on whether humans are hierarchical or egalitarian by nature. His thesis "is that egalitarianism does not result from the mere absence of hierarchy, as is commonly assumed. Rather egalitarianism involves a very special type of hierarchy, a curious type that is based on antihierarchical feelings." This "reverse dominance hierarchy," as Boehm calls it, depends on the rank and file banding together "to deliberately dominate their potential master if they wish to remain equal." Boehm extends his analysis to argue that the processes of group selection originally advanced by David Sloan Wilson can account for the evolution of altruistic behavior in humans. While Boehm's hypotheses are not always persuasive, they are invariably intriguing and well documented. His presentation can be difficult for the nonspecialist, but he raises topics of wide interest and his book should gain attention. (Dec.)
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.
"Sobre este título" puede pertenecer a otra edición de este libro.
Descripción Harvard University Press. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. 0674390318 New Condition. Nº de ref. de la librería NEW6.0335990
Descripción Harvard University Press, 1999. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería DADAX0674390318
Descripción Harvard University Press, 1999. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. Nº de ref. de la librería P110674390318
Descripción Harvard University Press, 1999. Hardcover. Estado de conservación: New. book. Nº de ref. de la librería 0674390318
Descripción Estado de conservación: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Nº de ref. de la librería 97806743903171.0