Accepted paper:

On the coevolution of cognition and culture

Authors:

Jeremy Kendal (Durham University)
Jamie Tehrani (Durham University)
Robert Layton (Durham University)

Paper short abstract:

The paper considers the gene-culture coevolution between the cognitive capacity for social learning and socially learned information. In the first section, we focus on the evolution of psychological mechanisms and biases affecting cultural evolution. In the second section, we consider the cognitive evolution in the hominid lineage that resulted in some unique characteristics of human culture, including cumulative cultural evolution, large-scale cooperation and symbolism. The chapter closes by arguing that a framework of multi-modal inheritance, provides a suitable framework to account for the coevolution of human cognition and culture.

Paper long abstract:

The paper considers the gene-culture coevolution between the cognitive capacity for social learning and socially learned information. In the first section, we focus on the evolution of psychological mechanisms and biases affecting cultural evolution. In the second section, we consider the cognitive evolution in the hominid lineage that resulted in some unique characteristics of human culture, including cumulative cultural evolution, large-scale cooperation and symbolism. The chapter closes by arguing that a framework of multi-modal inheritance, provides a suitable framework to account for the coevolution of human cognition and culture.

panel P16
Genes and culture, past and present