Why war is a man's game

@article{Micheletti2018WhyWI,
  title={Why war is a man's game},
  author={Alberto J. C. Micheletti and Graeme D. Ruxton and Andy Gardner},
  journal={Proceedings of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences},
  year={2018},
  volume={285}
}
Interest in the evolutionary origins and drivers of warfare in ancient and contemporary small-scale human societies has greatly increased in the last decade, and has been particularly spurred by exciting archaeological discoveries that suggest our ancestors led more violent lives than previously documented. However, the striking observation that warfare is an almost-exclusively male activity remains unexplained. Three general hypotheses have been proposed, concerning greater male effectiveness… 

Figures from this paper

Warfare in an evolutionary perspective
  • B. Majolo
  • Psychology, Biology
    Evolutionary anthropology
  • 2019
TLDR
It is argued that cultural and evolutionary explanations on the emergence of warfare are not alternative but analyze biological diversity at two distinct levels and that lethal violence and aggression toward outgroup individuals are two linked but distinct phenomena.
Evolutionary and Life History Insights into Masculinity and Warfare
In this paper I present, evaluate, and discuss evidence that evolutionary and life history theory can inform our understanding of violence and warfare as well as how these human challenges are
The demography of human warfare can drive sex differences in altruism
Abstract Recent years have seen great interest in the suggestion that between-group aggression and within-group altruism have coevolved. However, these efforts have neglected the possibility that
The evolution of altruism through war is highly sensitive to population structure and to civilian and fighter mortality
  • M. Dyble
  • Biology
    Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences
  • 2021
TLDR
A well-known model that explores the coevolution of altruism and war is reexamine under a much broader range of conditions to those used in the original paper, showing that the degree of genetic differentiation between groups produced by Choi and Bowles’ original model is much greater than empirical estimates of FST between hunter-gatherer groups.
An Evolutionary Explanation for the Female Leadership Paradox
Social influence is distributed unequally between males and females in many mammalian societies. In human societies, gender inequality is particularly evident in access to leadership positions.
Cultural extinction in evolutionary perspective
TLDR
This work proposes an analytical framework to examine the phenomenon of cultural extinction and reviews recent evolutionary studies that have informed cultural extinction processes and discusses avenues of future studies.
Subsistence strategy mediates ecological drivers of human violence
Inter-personal violence (whether intra- or inter-group) is a pervasive yet highly variable human behavior. Evolutionary anthropologists suggest that the abundance and distribution of resources play
The Impacts of Conservation and Militarization on Indigenous Peoples
TLDR
Principal conclusions are that conservation and militarization efforts have led to a reduction in land and resources available to indigenous people, higher levels of poverty, increased socioeconomic stratification, and lower levels of physical well-being.
Do Women Contribute More Effort than Men to a Real Public Good?
We present evidence from a lab-in-the-field experiment, conducted in eight small, rural villages in Mexico, in which subjects choose to exert real effort to fund real health centers in their own and
Anthropology Now
  • M. Kissel
  • History
    Evaluating Evidence in Biological Anthropology
  • 2019

References

SHOWING 1-10 OF 87 REFERENCES
An evolutionary theory of large‐scale human warfare: Group‐structured cultural selection
TLDR
It is proposed that group‐structured cultural selection explains the phenomenon of dead warriors and how humans solve the problem of collective action in warfare at the evolutionarily novel scale of hundreds of genetically unrelated individuals.
The evolution of war: theory and controversy
  • A. Lopez
  • Political Science
    International Theory
  • 2015
The use of evolutionary theory for explaining human warfare is an expanding area of inquiry, but it remains obstructed by two important hurdles. One is that there is ambiguity about how to build an
Did Warfare Among Ancestral Hunter-Gatherers Affect the Evolution of Human Social Behaviors?
TLDR
A model of the evolutionary impact of between-group competition and a new data set that combines archaeological evidence on causes of death during the Late Pleistocene and early Holocene with ethnographic and historical reports on hunter-gatherer populations finds that the estimated level of mortality in intergroup conflicts would have had substantial effects, allowing the proliferation of group-beneficial behaviors that were quite costly to the individual altruist.
Warfare and reproductive success in a tribal population
TLDR
Data on participation in small-scale livestock raids among the Nyangatom, a group of nomadic pastoralists in East Africa, suggests that in this cultural context raiding provides opportunities for increased reproductive success over the lifetime.
War, space, and the evolution of Old World complex societies
TLDR
A model that uses cultural evolution mechanisms to predict where and when the largest-scale complex societies should have arisen in human history supports theories that emphasize the role of institutions in state-building and suggests a possible explanation why a long history of statehood is positively correlated with political stability, institutional quality, and income per capita.
Lethal Aggression in Mobile Forager Bands and Implications for the Origins of War
TLDR
Investigating lethal aggression in a sample of 21 mobile forager band societies derived systematically from the standard cross-cultural sample suggests that most incidents of lethal aggression among MFBS may be classified as homicides, a few others as feuds, and a minority as war.
Evolution of coalitionary killing.
  • R. Wrangham
  • Psychology
    American journal of physical anthropology
  • 1999
TLDR
Current evidence supports the hypothesis that selection has favored a hunt-and-kill propensity in chimpanzees and humans, and that coalitional killing has a long history in the evolution of both species.
Why Sex Matters: A Darwinian Look at Human Behavior
TLDR
Sexual differences among humans are illustrated by showing that in places as diverse as the parishes of nineteenth-century Sweden, the villages of seventeenth-century China, and the forests of twentieth-century Brazil, men have tended to seek power and resources to attract mates, while women have sought a secure environment for raising children.
Grounds for War: The Evolution of Territorial Conflict
In international relations, unlike the natural sciences, there are few fundamental principles or laws. The world map, however, reveals at least one iron law of global politics: human territoriality.
Ancestral War and the Evolutionary Origins of “Heroism”
TLDR
Two simulations explore the possibility that heroism evolved as a specialized form of altruism in response to war and show that war selects strongly for heroism but only weakly for a domain-general altruistic propensity that promotes both heroism and other privately costly, group-benefiting behaviors.
...
...