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Socio-Economic Environment and Human PsychologySocial, Ecological, and Cultural Perspectives$
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Ayse K. Üskül and Shigehiro Oishi

Print publication date: 2018

Print ISBN-13: 9780190492908

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2018

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190492908.001.0001

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Ecocultural Perspective on Human Behavior

Ecocultural Perspective on Human Behavior

(p.3) Chapter 1 Ecocultural Perspective on Human Behavior
Socio-Economic Environment and Human Psychology

John W Berry

Oxford University Press

The ecological approach to understanding phenomena examines them in their contexts and attempts to identify relationships between the phenomena and these contexts. Essential to this approach are the concepts of interaction and adaptation. Interaction implies reciprocal relationships among elements in an ecosystem; adaptation implies that changes in these elements will take place that may (or may not) increase their mutual fit or compatibility. The core claims of the ecocultural approach to understanding human behavior are that cultural features of human populations interact with, and are adaptive to, the ecological contexts in which they develop and live and that the development and display of individual human behavior are adaptive to these ecological and cultural contexts. There are two kinds of cultural contexts that shape the development and display of human behavior: enculturation and acculturation. This chapter reviews these core ideas, and illustrates them with research on cognitive and social behavior.

Keywords:   adaptation, ecocultural approach, ecology, culture, acculturation, enculturation, ecological context

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