Phylogenetic analyses of behavior support existence of culture among wild chimpanzees

@article{Lycett2007PhylogeneticAO,
  title={Phylogenetic analyses of behavior support existence of culture among wild chimpanzees},
  author={Stephen J. Lycett and Mark Collard and William C. McGrew},
  journal={Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences},
  year={2007},
  volume={104},
  pages={17588 - 17592}
}
Culture has long been considered to be not only unique to humans, but also responsible for making us qualitatively different from all other forms of life. In recent years, however, researchers studying chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) have challenged this idea. Natural populations of chimpanzees have been found to vary greatly in their behavior. Because many of these interpopulation differences cannot be readily explained by ecological factors, it has been argued that they result from social… 
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This study refutes the genetic hypothesis and provides further evidence that patterns of behavior in chimpanzees are the product of social learning and therefore meet the main condition for culture.
The importance of history in definitions of culture: Implications from phylogenetic approaches to the study of social learning in chimpanzees
  • S. Lycett
  • Psychology, Medicine
    Learning & behavior
  • 2010
TLDR
It is argued here that cultural mosaics of multiple behaviors that differ intercommunally, both in humans and chimpanzees, are an emergent property of a phylogenetic process of descent with modification, mediated by mechanisms of social transmission, variation, and sorting through time.
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The authors conclude that the phylogenetic trees that best describe the affinities between the behavioral profiles of different chimpanzee communities are not compatible with a genetic explanation and instead support the cultural interpretation.
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It is found that geography, and longitude in particular, was the best predictor of behavioral variation, and this results support the idea that inter-community dispersal patterns have played a major role in structuring behavioral variation.
Controlled studies of chimpanzee cultural transmission.
TLDR
The following chapter details a series of experimental studies at Yerkes National Primate Research Center of Emory University designed to investigate the conditions under which chimpanzees learn from one another, how behaviors are transmitted, and how cultures are maintained over generations.
Cultural assemblages show nested structure in humans and chimpanzees but not orangutans
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A significant degree of nestedness is found in human and chimpanzee cultural repertoires, but not for orangutans, suggesting that the traits required for sequential cultural evolution first appeared in the last common ancestor of chimpanzees and humans.
Tradition over trend: Neighboring chimpanzee communities maintain differences in cultural behavior despite frequent immigration of adult females
TLDR
The data support a cultural transmission process in adult chimpanzees, which leads to persisting cultural behavior of one community over time, and that the high level of similarity in behavior is actively adopted by group members possibly even when originally expressing the behavior in another form.
Simulating trait evolution for cross-cultural comparison
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A spatially explicit simulation model is described that can be used to generate data with known degrees of horizontal donation showing that horizontal transmission increases the type I error rate of phylogenetically independent contrasts in studies of correlated evolution.
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