Culture & Evolution

Stephanie Wilson (swilson@BIGCAT.MISSOURI.EDU)
Thu, 3 Feb 1994 16:06:32 -0600

Another iron to throw in the culture definition fire...

We have been discussing culture as learned behavior, but this only
addresses on aspect of evolution: reproduction. We also have to look for
a means of Natural Selection. Could conformity be this selective factor?
If people are learning behaviors/beliefs/traditions/etc., what happens to
those who are unable or unwilling to conform to the social norms? For the
moment I am excluding those members of society who have learning problems
(i.e. mentally retarded). What about those people who are outlaws or

In less extreme examples, what about methods of conformity? Could peer
pressure in adolescents represent a means of forcing/encouraging people
to conform to "acceptable" behavior?

Stephanie Wilson