Social Intelligence: From Brain to Culture

Overview


Why are humans so clever? Social Intelligence explores the idea that this cleverness has evolved through the increasing complexity of social groups. Our ability to understand and control nature is a by-product of our ability to understand the mental states of others and to use this knowledge to co-operate or deceive. These abilities have not emerged out of the blue. They can be found in many social animals that co-operate and compete with one another, birds as well as mammals. ...
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Overview


Why are humans so clever? Social Intelligence explores the idea that this cleverness has evolved through the increasing complexity of social groups. Our ability to understand and control nature is a by-product of our ability to understand the mental states of others and to use this knowledge to co-operate or deceive. These abilities have not emerged out of the blue. They can be found in many social animals that co-operate and compete with one another, birds as well as mammals.

This book brings together contributions from an impressive list of authorities in the field, appropriately concluding with a chapter by Nick Humphrey (one of the pioneers in this field). This volume examines social intelligence in many different animal species and explores its development, its evolution and the brain systems upon which it depends. Better understanding and futher development of social intelligence is critical for the future of the human race and the world that we inhabit. Our problems will not be solved by mere cleverness, but by increased social co-operation.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780199216543
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 2/9/2008
  • Pages: 432
  • Product dimensions: 9.40 (w) x 6.80 (h) x 1.50 (d)

Table of Contents


List of Contributors     vii
Introduction   Nathan Emery   Nicola Clayton   Chris Frith     ix
Comparative Perspectives
Cognitive adaptations of social bonding in birds   Nathan J Emery   Amanda M Seed   Auguste M P von Bayern   Nicola S Clayton     1
Social cognition by food-caching corvids: The western scrub-jay as a natural psychologist   Nicola S Clayton   Joanna M Dally   Nathan J Emery     33
Social intelligence in the spotted hyena (Crocuta crocuta)   Kay E Holekamp   Sharleen T Sakai   Barbara L Lundrigan     63
The adaptive value of sociality in mammalian groups   Joan Silk     89
Social brains, simple minds: does social complexity really require cognitive complexity?   Louise Barrett   Peter Henzi   Drew Rendall     123
Culture in great apes: using intricate complexity in feeding skills to trace the evolutionary origin of human technical prowess   Richard Byrne     147
Dolphin social intelligence: complex alliance relationships in bottlenose dolphins and a consideration of selective environments for extreme brain size evolution in mammals   Richard C Connor     161
The evolution of animal 'cultures' and social intelligence   AndrewWhiten   Carel P van Schaik     189
Developmental & Neural Perspectives
Getting back to the rough ground: deception and 'social living'   Vasudevi Reddy     219
Cooperation and human cognition: the Vygotskian intelligence hypothesis   Henrike Moll   Michael Tomasello     245
Understanding primate brain evolution   Robin Dunbar   Susanne Shultz     261
Before and below 'theory of mind: embodied simulation and the neural correlates of social cognition   Vittorio Gallese     279
The social brain?   Chris Frith     297
Broader Perspectives
Socially intelligent robots: dimensions of human-robot interaction   Kerstin Dautenhahn     313
Did farming arise from a misapplication of social intelligence?   Steven Mithen     353
Social intelligence, human intelligence and niche construction   Kim Sterelny     375
On the lack of evidence that non-human animals possess anything remotely resembling a 'theory of mind'   Derek C Penn   Daniel Povinelli     393
The society of selves   Nicholas Humphrey     415
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