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Lucy to LanguageThe Benchmark Papers$
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R. I. M. Dunbar, Clive Gamble, and J. A. J. Gowlett

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780199652594

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199652594.001.0001

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The Costs of Being a High-latitude Hominin

The Costs of Being a High-latitude Hominin

(p.356) 16 The Costs of Being a High-latitude Hominin
Lucy to Language

Eiluned Pearce

Andrew Shuttleworth

Matt Grove

R.H. Layton

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines the challenges that hominins occupying higher latitudes have had to deal with. More specifically, it analyses how hominins were able to maintain social networks over the larger geographic areas associated with decreasing population densities at higher latitudes, along with the mechanisms by which the largest encompassing groups can be maintained. The chapter first considers what the term ‘group’ means before discussing the apparent trends in hominin group size and social organisation over time. It then explains why it is important to maintain extended community networks and the cognitive and time budgeting challenges presented by higher latitudes. It also compares Neanderthals and anatomically modern humans in terms of network sizes and in maintaining their extended social networks.

Keywords:   hominins, higher latitudes, social networks, group size, social organisation, extended community networks, time budgeting, Neanderthals, anatomically modern humans, groups

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