Social Learning and Culture in Primates

Elizabeth E. Price and Andrew Whiten

in The Oxford Handbook of Comparative Cognition

Second edition

Published in print March 2012 | ISBN: 9780195392661
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 Social Learning and Culture in Primates

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  • Psychology
  • Cognitive Psychology
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Social learning plays an essential role in the creation and maintenance of human cultural and technological complexity. As such, it is the focus of much comparative work, which typically seeks to highlight key similarities and differences between human and nonhuman subjects. Here we focus on social learning in nonhuman primates, including how it can be identified in free-ranging populations and experimentally dissected. We discuss the potential benefits and shortcomings of work specifically comparing human social learning with that of our closest living relatives, chimpanzees. Finally, we suggest future lines of inquiry to further advance our understanding of the subject.

Keywords: culture; traditions; cultural traits; social learning; primates; chimpanzees

Article.  12488 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Psychology ; Cognitive Neuroscience

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