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Following the RulesPractical Reasoning and Deontic Constraint$
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Joseph Heath

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780195370294

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2009

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195370294.001.0001

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A Naturalistic Perspective

A Naturalistic Perspective

(p.166) 6 A Naturalistic Perspective
Following the Rules

Joseph Heath (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

This chapter attempts to demonstrate the plausibility, from an evolutionary standpoint, of the action-theoretic model presented so far. It begins with an overview of contemporary debates over the problem of altruism and the puzzle of human cooperation. It shows how evolutionary theorists have wound up focusing upon two features of human social behavior as the key to understanding the occurrence of large-scale cooperation amongst genetically unrelated individuals. The first is imitativeness with a conformist bias, the second is moralistic punishment. These two features, it is argued, correspond closely to the action-theoretic primitives being posited in the formal model of deontic constraint outlined in the previous chapters.

Keywords:   inclusive fitness, reciprocal altruism, strong reciprocity, dual inheritance, cultural evolution, imitation, altruistic punishment, sociobiology

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