Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
A Different Kind of AnimalHow Culture Transformed Our Species$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Robert Boyd

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780691195902

Published to Princeton Scholarship Online: May 2020

DOI: 10.23943/princeton/9780691195902.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM PRINCETON SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.princeton.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Princeton University Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in PRSO for personal use.date: 16 May 2022

Imitation, Hayek, and the Significance of Cultural Learning

Imitation, Hayek, and the Significance of Cultural Learning

Chapter:
(p.125) Chapter 3 Imitation, Hayek, and the Significance of Cultural Learning
Source:
A Different Kind of Animal
Author(s):

H. Allen Orr

Publisher:
Princeton University Press
DOI:10.23943/princeton/9780691195902.003.0004

This chapter discusses biologist H. Allen Orr's two large and interesting questions about Robert Boyd's model of cultural learning. He wonders, first, whether Boyd exaggerates the contrast between the “Big Brain” model, which emphasizes cognitive explanations for human success, and the imitative model that Boyd prefers. Orr argues that successful imitation often requires considerable “neuronal firepower.” In addition, Orr usefully describes the partial convergence of Boyd's view with that advanced by the well-known free-market economist and social theorist Friedrich Hayek. Hayek also emphasized that social success and progress depend on the use of tacit and dispersed local knowledge, culturally transmitted social norms and ethical mores, and institutions that are the product of social evolution. Orr wonders whether scientists and social scientists pay less attention to Hayek than they should because of Hayek's politics.

Keywords:   Robert Boyd, cultural learning, imitation, Friedrich Hayek, local knowledge, social norms, ethical mores, institutions, social evolution

Princeton 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.