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Book Information

   

Title: Cultural Evolution
Written By: Kate Distin
URL: http://www.cambridge.org/catalogue/catalogue.asp?isbn=9780511784255
Description:

In this book, Kate Distin proposes a theory of cultural evolution and shows
how it can help us to understand the origin and development of human
culture. Distin introduces the concept that humans share information not only
in natural languages, which are spoken or signed, but also in artefactual
languages like writing and musical notation, which use media that are made
by humans. Languages enable humans to receive and transmit variations in
cultural information and resources. In this way, they provide the mechanism
for cultural evolution. The human capacity for metarepresentation - thinking
about how we think - accelerates cultural evolution, because it frees cultural
information from the conceptual limitations of each individual language. Distin
shows how the concept of cultural evolution outlined in this book can help us
to understand the complexity and diversity of human culture, relating her
theory to a range of subjects including economics, linguistics, and
developmental biology.

- Explains the origin of culture as the product of both natural and artefactual
languages
- Introduces a powerful new conceptual tool, namely the distinction
between natural and artefactual languages
- Presents evidence, from a range of academic disciplines, that cultural
evolution is a defensible theory with genuine explanatory value

Publication Year: 2010
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Review: Not available for review. If you would like to review a book on The LINGUIST List, please login to view the AFR list.
BibTex: View BibTex record
Linguistic Field(s): Sociolinguistics
Issue: All announcements sent out by The LINGUIST List are emailed to our subscribers and archived with the Library of Congress.
Click here to see the original emailed issue.

Versions:
Format: Electronic
ISBN-13: 9780511784255
Pages: 280
Prices: U.S. $ 22.00
 
Format: Hardback
ISBN-13: 9780521769013
Pages: 280
Prices: U.K. £ 55.00

 
 
Format: Paperback
ISBN-13: 9780521189712
Pages: 280
Prices: U.K. £ 17.99