Chapter

From Experiential-based to Relational-based Forms of Social Organization: A Major Transition in the Evolution of <i>Homo sapiens</i>

Dwight Read

in Social Brain, Distributed Mind

Published by British Academy

Published in print April 2010 | ISBN: 9780197264522
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734724 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.5871/bacad/9780197264522.003.0010

Series: Proceedings of the British Academy

From Experiential-based to Relational-based Forms of Social Organization: A Major Transition in the Evolution of Homo sapiens

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The evolutionary trajectory from non-human to human forms of social organization involves change from experiential- to relational-based systems of social interaction. Social organization derived from biologically and experientially grounded social interaction reached a hiatus with the great apes due to an expansion of individualization of behaviour. The hiatus ended with the introduction of relational-based social interaction, culminating in social organization based on cultural kinship. This evolutionary trajectory links biological origins to cultural outcomes and makes evident the centrality of distributed forms of information for both the boundary and internal structure of human societies as these evolved from prior forms of social organization.

Keywords: social organization; social interaction; great apes; cultural kinship; human society

Chapter.  11185 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Psychology

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