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[icon] Notes: Wade Before the Dawn 4 - The World Through Green Almond Eyes
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Subject:Notes: Wade Before the Dawn 4
Time:11:19 pm

ch 8 Sociality

141 "T templates fr chimp & hmn soc bh hmn soc bhvr r v similr in a central feature, that of terr defense & t willingness to solve t prob of a hostile neighboring soc by seeking its extermination."

142-3 Patrilocality in hmns & chimps, rare in other primates.
Chimps: communities up to 120 members, move in bands of ~20 w shifting membership, "fission-fusion soc".
aggr defend terr, lethal raids on neighbors.
Fem gather fruit in terr, lrgr terr more kids.
144 M dom over f: "Every adult m demands deference frm every f, resorting to immediate violence if a submiss response is nt forthcoming."
m becomes alpha in violent "election". alpha m 36% of all conceptions, other hi rnk m's 50%.
145 f ihierarchy, infanticide of rival offspring by dom f
146 chimps use tools, bonobos nt.

Bonobos: no gorillas in terr, eat both fruit & herbs, abundant food in terr, less competitive.
f's form alliances & gang up on m's. concealed estrus, unknown patenity, less m comp

Hmn bhvr midway btwn chimp & bon.

151 "Warfare btwn pre-state socs ws incessant, merciless, & condcted w t general purpse, often achieved, of annihilating t opponent."

Primitive soc's:: 65% at war const, 87% > once/yr. Avg lost .5% pop in combat /yr. 30% ang lost in pitched battles.

155 Cannibalism - fnd in Anasazi of Amer SW, Central & S Amer, Fiji, NZ, New Guinea, Africa.
Protection agnst mad cow disease, fnd in UK & wrldwide, came frm gen immunity to hmn brain prions amng early cannibals

Reciprocal atruism & post-tribal soc
160 50-100 max size fr kin-based soc.
Reciprocity, fairness, trade, trust - oxytocin & vasopressin

165 Religion coevolved w/lang as counteractive against lying, cheating & freeloading. Sacred = guarantee of truth, oaths, vows
* doesn't explain concept of Trickster gods, Gr poets as divinely-inspired liars.

Ritual began at hunter-gath stage.
167 "when leaders & elites emerged in settled socs.... t elites coopted t ritual practices as another mech of soc cntrl & as a means of justifying thr privileged position."
theocracy, sacred kings
* sacred city, geom of centralization v. agoric sprawl

169 Pr bondng, "privatization of sex", taboo agnst pub sex disply unlike exhibitionist chimps - decreases temptation & reduces m comp
171 Mistaken paternity - 5-10% in avg Amer & UK pops. 10% avg Amer.
171-2 Sperm competition causes sperm genes to evolve rapidly in chimps & hmns. Heteropaternity - twins by diff dads

176 Gracialization - thinning of skull - indicates more civilized, less aggressive. Domestication o hmns. Asians & Sub-Sahar Afs most gracile, Euros more robust

Pedomorphic evol - domestic animals retain juvenile traiits into adulthood. Tameness breeds cuteness. Bonobos more pedomorphic thn chimps.

178-9 Early socs 3 lvls o complexity: local grps, regional polities (archaic states)
Hunter-gath family based, w some trans-family reciprocity.
Settled socs surpluses, trade, headmen
Archaic states - last 5000 yrs

180 "In the emergence of these early hmn states, 2 strng forces were at work, & still shape rlns btwn sts in t contemp wrld. One is t need fr defense. t other the dependence on trade. Bth o these st behavrs spring frm t deepest wells o hmn nature, t contrary instincts fr aggression & reciprocity.

In 2002, .3% of deaths caused by war

"An elemt o hmn choice, a preference fr negotiation over annihilation, hs perhaps bn injected into t genome. & tht mght explain why thr is an inescapable sense o progress abt hmn evol over t last 10,000 yrs: hmn choice hs imposed a direction on t blind forces tht hv hitherto shaped evol's random walk."
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Time:2010-06-21 06:04 am (UTC)
Do I understand from these notes that cannibalism is somehow protective vs prion dz in humans? Curious as to how. And this is the first reference I've seen to canniablism in the Anasazi.

So those humans that I know from diagnostic imaging have very thick skulls, they're more primitive, huh. It jives.
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Time:2010-06-22 04:08 am (UTC)
Wow, you can actually read my typographic shorthand. :)

Well, in a roundabout way. Cannibalism spreads prion disease through direct ingestion of infected brain tissue. (As in, "Mmmm.... braaains...") Over the generations, a cannibalistic population will develop genetic immunity to prions via natural selection. Hence the reason so many modern people are immune to mad cow disease is because their distant ancestors ate human brains.

There's still a controversy about the the Anasazi, concerning who ate whom, when & why. Evidence has been found of human bones that appear to have been cooked, and human proteins in coprolites (fossil poo).

If you can stomach it (no pun intended), here's a very interesting & informative, if gruesome, article: How Cannibalism Works.

According to Wade, gracialization is a sign of civilized status & relative pacifism. Note, however, that Sub-Saharan Africans are among the most gracile, despite being tribal until fairly recently. They're also the oldest human population, so perhaps gracialization is just something that happens over time, civilization or not.

I also wonder if Europeans have thick, robust heads due to mating with Neanderthals.
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Time:2010-06-22 05:45 am (UTC)
OK, I get that rationale for human resistance to prions and it is possible. How do you know that some humans ARE resistant?

Anasazi: now that you mention it I remember about the bones. Also I've heard somthing something about them taking dumps in other tribes fire rings as revenge/violation, though I don't know if originating in a human is enough to provide the proteins you say are found in coprolites.

Will save the link for a day when I'm not cramming for finals. Your notes are not that far different from mine, we just devolved our language into slightly different abbrevations. Gotta keep it short.
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Time:2010-06-30 10:57 pm (UTC)
The individuals I know of who've been shown via MRI or CT to have very thick skulls do have some other characteristics suggesting Neanderthal lineage.

I didn't get very far on the cannibalism article but I saved it. My stomach is churning on the thought of flambeeing a man's penis and then sharing it with him.

I follow your rationale re: immunity by natural selection, I just hadn't been made aware that ANYONE was immune to prions. I know that some of us are immune to AIDS--because we are descended from the survivors of the bubonic plague.
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[icon] Notes: Wade Before the Dawn 4 - The World Through Green Almond Eyes
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