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In 1987, the University of Chicago Press published Primate Societies, the standard reference in the field of primate behavior for an entire generation of students and scientists. But in the twenty-five years since its publication, new theories and research techniques for studying the Primate order have been developed, debated, and tested, forcing scientists to revise their understanding of our closest living relatives. Intended as a sequel to Primate Societies, The Evolution of Primate Societies compiles thirty-one chapters that review the current state of knowledge regarding the behavior of nonhuman primates. Chapters are written by the leading authorities in the field and organized around four major adaptive problems primates face as they strive to grow, maintain themselves, and reproduce in the wild. The inclusion of chapters on the behavior of humans at the end of each major section represents one particularly novel aspect of the book, and it will remind readers what we can learn about ourselves through research on nonhuman primates. The final section highlights some of the innovative and cutting-edge research designed to reveal the similarities and differences between nonhuman and human primate cognition. The Evolution of Primate Societies will be every bit the landmark publication its predecessor has been.
Primate Societies is a synthesis of the most current information on primate socioecology and its theoretical and empirical significance, spanning the disciplines of behavioral biology, ecology, anthropology, and psychology. It is a very rich source of ideas about other taxa. "A superb synthesis of knowledge about the social lives of non-human primates."—Alan Dixson, Nature
In this book, Hans Kummer, one of the world's leading primate ethologists, examines the patterns of social interaction among primates. He examines this social behavior from the fundamentally biological viewpoint of evolutionary adaptation as part of the survival mechanisms for the species. Recognizing that all activity is constituted in part of genetic programming and in part of adaptive behavior, he explores the borderline area between the genetic and the "cultural." By use of astute observation and clever experimentation he shows that many aspects of social behavior are inherited, and differentially inherited among various primate groups. These data also show, however, that the individuals and troops learn much in primate social life and that these forms are responsive to particular ecological situations. Drawing heavily on knowledge gleaned from his own well-known studies of the Hamadryas baboon, Dr. Kummer introduces the reader to the daily life of a particular primate society. From this sample case, he proceeds to a more general characterization of primate societies, using as examples the great apes and monkeys of Africa, Asia, and South America and particularly the widely studied terrestrial monkey species. The particularities of primate communication, social structure, and economy are described and special attention is devoted to the primate counterparts of kinship and age groups-behavioral differences based on age and sex, and mating and grouping systems. This is followed by a chapter dealing with the ecological functions of the major parameters of primate social life, such as group size and the coordination of activities within it-dominance, leadership systems, and spatial arrangements. The second part of the book is concerned with the origins of behavioral traits of primates, discussed from phylogenetic, ecological, and cultural points of view, again using data-based examples. Dr. Kummer explains why some traits have not evolved that would have been adaptive, and traces the rise of several secondary functions in their place. The final section of- the book confronts man with his fellow primates, emphasizing the probable limits imposed upon human culture by the existing phylogenetic heritage. Hans Kummer earned his Ph.D. in zoology from the University of Zurich. His research projects include study of the spatial and fami1y organization of primate groups at the Delta Regional Primate Research Center at Covington, La., and three years of field study of the social behavior of baboons in Ethiopia. Dr. Kummer has contributed articles to many journals and symposia. Since 1969, he has been Assistant Professor of Zoology at the University of Zurich.
As part of the SFI series, this book presents the most up-to-date research in the study of human and primate societies, presenting recent advances in software and algorithms for modeling societies. It also addresses case studies that have applied agent-based modeling approaches in archaeology, cultural anthropology, primatology, and sociology. Many things set this book apart from any other on modeling in the social sciences, including the emphasis on small-scale societies and the attempts to maximize realism in the modeling efforts applied to social problems and questions. It is an ideal book for professionals in archaeology or cultural anthropology as well as a valuable tool for those studying primatology or computer science.
Examines how simians cope with aggression, and how they make peace after fights.
Societies develop as a result of the interactions of individuals as they compete and cooperate with one another in the evolutionary struggle to survive and reproduce successfully. Gorilla society is arranged according to these different and sometimes conflicting evolutionary goals of the sexes. In seeking to understand why gorilla society exists as it does, Alexander H. Harcourt and Kelly J. Stewart bring together extensive data on wild gorillas, collected over decades by numerous researchers working in diverse habitats across Africa, to illustrate how the social system of gorillas has evolved and endured. Gorilla Society introduces recent theories explaining primate societies, describes gorilla life history, ecology, and social systems, and explores both sexes’ evolutionary strategies of survival and reproduction. With a focus on the future, Harcourt and Stewart conclude with suggestions for future research and conservation. An exemplary work of socioecology from two of the world’s best known gorilla biologists, Gorilla Society will be a landmark study on a par with the work of George Schaller—a synthesis of existing research on these remarkable animals and the societies in which they live.

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