What makes us human? What made us become the way we are? One way to answer these questions is to identify the traits that all humans share, traits that are universal features of all human societies. Another way to do so is to ask how humans differ from other species, particularly from our closest relatives, the nonhuman primates. The contributors to this book pursue both approaches, in an effort to understand how evolution has shaped modern human behavior and societies.
From the reviews: "This edited, 22-chapter volume organizes contributions by experts from a wide range of disciplines ! to address the origins and evolution of human universals--specifically, those behavioral and cognitive features that make humans a distinct species from other primates. ! In looking for evidence of both convergence and common descent in specific traits, as is common in comparative primatology, contributors make a very strong effort to evaluate the available evidence for evolutionary continuity in human social behavior. ! Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through researchers/faculty." (R. A. Delgado Jr., Choice, Vol. 47 (11), August, 2010)