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Advances in Culture and Psychology$
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Michele J. Gelfand, Chi-yue Chiu, and Ying-yi Hong

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199336715

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199336715.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 13 April 2021

Economics, Sex, and the Emergence of Society

Economics, Sex, and the Emergence of Society

A Dynamic Life History Model of Cultural Variation

(p.78) Chapter 2 Economics, Sex, and the Emergence of Society
Advances in Culture and Psychology

Douglas T. Kenrick

Luis Gomez-Jacinto

Oxford University Press

Cultural variations in social norms have sometimes been taken as evidence against evolved universal predispositions. This chapter discusses several cultural variations—including male competitiveness, ages of marriage partners preferred by men and women, prevalence of bride price versus dowry, and polygyny versus polyandry. The chapter reviews these cultural variations in light of relevant principles from evolutionary life history theory. An evolutionary life history model considers behavioral variation through the lens of evolutionary economics—asking how any given pattern of behavior might be a manifestation of universal tradeoffs that all organisms must make as they attempt to optimally allocate their inherently limited resources. Discussion considers how cultural norms can emerge dynamically from interactions between individuals making selfish choices based on underlying evolved decision-biases.

Keywords:   evolutionary life history, behavioral ecology, dynamical systems theory, dynamical evolutionary psychology, cultural variation, cultural variations, male competitiveness

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