Evolution of Human Behavior

Primate Models

Edited by Warren G. Kinzey

Subjects: Primatology
Paperback : 9780887062681, 316 pages, December 1986
Hardcover : 9780887062674, 316 pages, December 1986

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Table of contents


Warren G. Kinzey

I. Behavioral Innovations

1. Gathering by Females: The Chimpanzee Model Revisited and the Gathering Hypothesis

Nancy M. Tanner

2. Transportation of Resources: Reconstructions of early hominid socioecology: a critique of primate models

Richard Potts

II. Primate-derived Models

3. African Apes: The significance of African apes for reconstructing human social evolution

Richard W. Wrangham

4. Chimpanzees: Pygmy chimpanzees and common cimpanzees: models for the behavioral ecology of the earliest hominids

Randall L. Susman

5. Baboons: Baboon models and muddles

Shirley C. Strum & Willam Mitchell

6. Monogamous Primates: A primate model for human mating systems

Warren G. Kinzey

7. Howler Monkeys: Diet, dimorphism, and demography: perspectives from howlers to hominids

Carolyn M. Crockett

III. Paleoecological Models

8. Cytogenetic Methods: Social and ecological aspects of primate cytogenetics

Jon Marks

9. Morpho-Physiological Analysis of Diets: Species-specific dietary patterns in primates and human dietary adaptations

Robert W. Sussman

IV. Theoretical Issues

10. The reconstruction of hominid behavioral evolution through strategic modeling

John Tooby and Irven Devore



Author Index

Subject Index


This book represents an important meeting ground in the primatology field by exploring the various primate models that have been used in the reconstruction of early human behavior. While some models are based on the proposition that a key behavioral feature such as hunting, eating of seeds or monogamous mating led to the evolutionary separation of apes and humans, other models suggest that one primate species, such as the baboon or chimpanzee, best exemplifies the behavior of our early ancestors.

Several contributors to the book take the position that no single primate is a good model and contend instead that a model must be eclectic. One of the more innovative essays suggests that ancestral behavioral states can, in fact, be derived by comparing the behavior of all living hominid (ape and human) species. Additionally, several other contributors analyze and discuss the concept of model-making, noting deficiencies in earlier models while offering suggestions for future development. Although it is true that a powerful conceptual model for reconstructing hominid behavior does not yet exist, The Evolution of Human Behavior: Primate Models suggests ways one may be constructed based on behavioral ecology and evolutionary theory.

Warren G. Kinzey is Professor and Chairman of the Department of Anthropology at City College.