Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
The Innate Mind Volume 2: Culture and Cognition$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Peter Carruthers, Stephen Laurence, and Stephen Stich

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195310139

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2007

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195310139.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2020. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 04 August 2020

Culture, Adaptation, and Innateness

Culture, Adaptation, and Innateness

(p.23) 2 Culture, Adaptation, and Innateness
The Innate Mind

Robert Boyd (Contributor Webpage)

Peter J. Richerson

Oxford University Press

Culture has fundamentally changed the nature of human evolution because it creates a novel evolutionary tradeoff. Social learning allows human populations to rapidly evolve accumulate cultural evolution of highly adaptive culturally transmitted behaviors. However, to get the benefits of social learning, humans have to be credulous, for the most part accepting the ways that they observe in their society as sensible and proper; such credulity opens up human minds to the spread of maladaptive beliefs. These costs can be reduced by tinkering with our evolved psychology, but they cannot be eliminated without losing the adaptive benefits of cumulative cultural evolution. The classic nature-nurture controversy neglects the processes of gene-culture coevolution. An evolutionary psychology lacking an account of this fundamental tradeoff cannot successfully explain human evolution.

Keywords:   cultural evolution, gene-culture coevolution, nature-nurture controversy, evolutionary psychology, human evolution

Oxford Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs , and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us .