Re: intelligence

Ralph L Holloway (rlh2@COLUMBIA.EDU)
Sun, 5 Feb 1995 12:38:34 -0500

Speculation about the relationship between the brain and social behavior
has been around some time, from Darwin on. If I may beat my breast
briefly, I wrote a few important (I thought) papers on the subject: (1)
1981, Cultural symbols and human brain evolution. Dialectical
Anthropology, 5:287-303. (2) 1975 The role of social behavior in the
evolution of the human brain. 43rd James Arthur Lecture on the Evolution of
the Human Brain. NY:Amer. Mus. Nat. Hist. (3) 1967, Evolution of the
human brain: some notes toward a synthesis between neural structure
and the evolution of complex behavior. In General Systems, Vol 12 3-19

On Sun, 5 Feb 1995, Boris Katz wrote:

> Boris Katz is here. On Feb. 3 Rob Quinlan wrote:
> Intelligence seems to go along with increasing social complexity.
> ...
> Therefore, I suggest that intelligence evolved in this context for
> the purpose of manipulating social relationships.
> I'd like to draw your attention that this was first suggested by Nicholas
> Humphrey in in his classical paper "The social function of intellect" (In:
> P.P.G. Bateson and R.A. Hinde (eds) "Growing points in ethology", Cambridge U.
> Press, 1976). Recently, Matt Ridley very lucidly presented Humphrey's ideas
> in "The Red Queen: Sex and the evolution of human nature" (Macmillan, 1993),
> where he, for example, said:
> We use our intellects not to solve practical problems but to outwit
> each other. Deceiving people, detecting deceit, understanding people's
> motives, manipulating people -- these are what the intellect is for.