Natural Conflict Resolution

By Filippo Aureli; Frans B. M. De Waal | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 5
Dominance and
Communication

Conflict Management in Various Social Settings
Signe Preuschoft & Carel P. van Schaik

To win without fighting is the best.

Sun Tzu, The Art of War


Introduction

Is dominance a conflict management device? To what extent can dominance be seen as an adaptation to reduce the frequency of aggression and the probability of escalating violence? Much of the theory developed for animal conflict refers to contests between animals unfamiliar to one another. This chapter, however, will be largely concerned with the nature of dominance in groups, where virtually all conflicts occur within social long-term relationships—the very context in which reconciliation and peaceful conflict resolution are functionally most relevant (e.g., de Waal, Chapter 2). To appreciate fully what is special about dominance, it is necessary first to see how conflicts are handled between strangers. After showing that even among strangers escalated fighting is the last resort, we will examine how familiarity, spatial association, and interindividual bonding affect the way in which conflicts are managed. Our point of departure is the familiar framework of decision making in animals: the economics of escalation and assessment of fighting abilities, and the socioecology of resource acquisition.


Conflict of Interest and Modes of Competition

Conflicts of interest can arise between two animals when their goals are incompatible, either because both individuals seek different things but one can suppress the other in realizing its goal (as during weaning), or because two animals seek to have the same thing but only one can have it (as in competition for food; Hand 1986).

Conflicts are not always expressed in behavioral interactions. The strategy chosen to resolve a conflict is best conceived in terms of a costbenefit analysis carried out by each competitor.

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Natural Conflict Resolution
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page *
  • Contents v
  • Preface ix
  • Acknowledgments xi
  • Introduction 1
  • Chapter 1 - Why Natural Conflict Resolution? 3
  • References *
  • Part I - History 11
  • Introduction 13
  • Chapter 2 - Foundations of Conflict Resolution Research in Animals 15
  • References *
  • Chapter 3 - Conflict Management in Children and Adolescents 34
  • References *
  • Chapter 4 - Searching for Natural Conflict Resolution in Homo Sapiens 54
  • References *
  • Part II - Controlling Aggression 71
  • Introduction 73
  • Chapter 5 - Conflict Management in Various Social Settings 77
  • References *
  • Chapter 6 - Covariation of Conflict Management Patterns Across Macaque Species 106
  • References *
  • Chapter 7 - Coping with Crowded Conditions 129
  • References *
  • Chapter 8 - The Peacefulness of Cooperatively Breeding Primates 155
  • References *
  • Part III - Repairing the Damage 171
  • Introduction 173
  • Chapter 9 - Reconciliation and Relationship Qualities 177
  • References 196
  • Chapter 10 - The Role of Emotion in Conflict and Conflict Resolution 199
  • References 219
  • Chapter 11 - Expanding the Reconciliation Horizon 225
  • References *
  • Chapter 12 - A Multicultural View of Peacemaking Among Young Children 243
  • References *
  • Part IV - Triadic Affairs 259
  • Introduction 261
  • Chapter 13 - Post-Conflict Affiliation of the Aggressor 263
  • References *
  • Chapter 14 - How Targets of Aggression Interact with Bystanders 281
  • References *
  • Part V - Ecological and Cultural Contexts 303
  • Introduction 305
  • Chapter 15 - The Natural History of Valuable Relationships in Primates 307
  • References 327
  • Chapter 16 - Conflict Management in Cross-Cultural Perspective 334
  • References *
  • Chapter 17 - The Evolution and Development of Morality 352
  • References *
  • Conclusion 373
  • Chapter 18 - Shared Principles and Unanswered Questions 375
  • Appendixes 381
  • Appendix A - The Occurrence of Reconciliation in Nonhuman Primates 383
  • References *
  • Appendix B - Key Terms Used in the Volume 387
  • References *
  • Contributors 389
  • Index 391
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