Social Learning In Animals

The Roots of Culture

Edited by

  • Cecilia Heyes, University College, London, U.K.
  • Bennett Galef, Jr., McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

The increasing realization among behaviorists and psychologists is that many animals learn by observation as members of social systems. Such settings contribute to the formation of culture. This book combines the knowledge of two groups of scientists with different backgrounds to establish a working consensus for future research. The book is divided into two major sections, with contributions by a well-known, international, and interdisciplinary team which integrates these growing areas of inquiry.
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The primary audience is comprised of the membership of the Animal Behavior Society and the American Society of Primatologists. Advanced undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty interested in how the context of social systems and imitation influence the evolution of culture, as well as a sophisticated retail audience will be interested.


Book information

  • Published: May 1996
  • ISBN: 978-0-12-273965-1


"Clearly, this volume offers much that appeals to a wide ranger of potential readers. Moreover, this panarama of intriguing material is presented at a level that is accessible by both students and faculty. The only thing left at this point is to acquire a copy of this fine work."

"Bennett Galef and Celia Heyes provide useful introductory chapters to each of these sections... Overall I found this book authoritative, informative, and frequently entertaining."

Table of Contents

Social Learning:B.G. Galef, Jr., Introduction.J. Terkel, Cultural Transmission of Feeding Behavior in the Black Rat (Rattus rattus).B.G. Galef, Jr., Social Enhancement of Food Preferences in Norway Rats: A Brief Review.D.M. Fragaszy and E. Visalberghi, Social Learning in Monkeys: Primate 'Primacy' Reconsidered.L.A. Dugatkin, Copying and Mate Choice.L. Lefebvre and L.-A. Giraldeau, Is Social Learning and Adaptive Specialization?K.N. Laland, P.J. Richeron, and R. Boyd, Developing a Theory of Animal Social Learning.M.E. West, Social Learning: Synergy and Songbirds.R.R. Provine, Contagious Yawning and Laughing: Significance for Sensory Feature Detection, Motor Pattern Generation, Imitation and the Evolution of Social Behavior.Imitation:C.M. Heyes, Introduction: Identifying and Defining Imitation.T.R. Zentall, An Analysis of Imitative Learning in Animals.B.R. Moore, The Evolution of Imitative Learning.M.A. Huffman, Acquisition of Innovative Cultural Behaviors in Nonhuman Primates: A Case Study of Stone Handling, a Socially Transmitted Behavior in Japanese Macaques.A. Whiten and D. Custance, Studies of Imitation in Chimpanzees and Children.M. Tomasello, Do Apes Ape?A. Meltzoff, The Human Infant as Imitative Generalist: A 20-Year Progressive Report.C.M. Heyes, Genuine Imitation?Chapter References.Author Index.Subject Index.