Robin Dunbar Institute of Cognitive & Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Oxford, Oxford, UK
British Academy Centenary Research Project, Institute of Cognitive & Evolutionary Anthropology, University of Oxford, 64 Banbury Road, Oxford, OX2 6PN, UK

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Biology and the social sciences parted company at a time when evolution itself was poorly understood. As a result, the social sciences left with a rather impoverished view of evolution, and therefore failed to take note of the developments that emerged later. Among these have been an appreciation of Tinbergen's “Four Whys”, Hamilton's broadening of the concept of fitness into what he termed “neighbour modulated fitnesses” and multi-level selection (as distinct from group selection). I argue that a better appreciation of some of these developments might go some way towards facilitating a rapprochement between the social and evolutionary sciences.

  • B.C.R. Bertram 1982 Reciprocal altruism, kin selection and mutualism B.C.R. Bertram T.H. Clutton-Brock R.I.M. Dunbar R.I. Rubenstein R.W. Wrangham Current Problems in Sociobiology Cambridge Univeristy Press Cambridge.

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  • D.L. Cheney 1983 Extrafamilial alliances among vervet monkeys R.A. Hinde Primate Social Relationships Blackwell Oxford 278 286.

  • T.H. Clutton-Brock 1988 Reproductive Success Cambridge University Press Cambridge.

  • R.I.M. Dunbar 1983 Lifehistory tactics and alternative strategies of reproduction P. Bateson Mate Choice Cambridge University Press Cambridge 423 433.

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  • R.I.M. Dunbar 1995 The Trouble with Science Faber & Faber London.

  • R.I.M. Dunbar 2007 The biological in the social: Evolutionary approaches to human behaviour D. Parkin S.J. Ulijaszek Holistic Anthropology: Emergence and Convergence Berghahn Oxford 52 71.

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  • R.I.M. Dunbar 2008 Mind the gap: Or why humans aren't just great apes Proc. Brit. Acad 154 403 423.

  • R.I.M. Dunbar 2010 Brain and behaviour in primate evolution P.H. Kappeler J. Silk Mind the Gap: Tracing the Origins of Human Universals Springer Verlag Berlin 315 330.

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  • R.I.M. Dunbar S. Shultz 2007 Evolution in the social brain Science 317 1344 1347.

  • A. Gardner 2008 The Price equation Curr. Biol. 18 R198 R202.

  • A. Hughes 1988 Evolution and Human Kinship Oxford University Press Oxford.

  • E. Mayr 1982 The Growth of Biological Thought Belknap Press Cambridge (MA).

  • H.C. Plotkin 2004 Evolutionary Thought in Psychology: A Brief History Blackwell Oxford.

  • G.R. Price 1970 Selection and covariance Nature 227 520 521.

  • S. Shultz R.I.M. Dunbar 2007 The evolution of the social brain: Anthropoid primates contrast with other vertebrates Proc. R. Soc. Lond. 274B 2429 2436.

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  • N. Tinbergen 1963 On aims and methods of ethology Z. Tierpsychol. 20 410 433.

  • M. an V Veelen 2005 On the use of the Price equation Evolution 237 412 426.

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Journal of Evolutionary Psychology 
Language English
Year of
2007 (2003)
changed title
per Year
per Year
Founder Akadémiai Kiadó
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Publisher Akadémiai Kiadó
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Chief Executive Officer, Akadémiai Kiadó
ISSN 1789-2082 (Print)
ISSN 2060-5587 (Online)

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