via Third Parties
Post-Conflict Affiliation of the Aggressor
Reconciliation (i.e., affiliation between opponents shortly after an aggressive conflict) has been extensively studied in primates for nearly two decades (de Waal, Chapter 2). The phenomenon of postconflict third-party affiliation (i.e., affiliation between opponents and other group members) has received far less attention. Although de Waal & van Roosmalen described “consolation” (i.e., postconflict affiliation between targets of aggression and third parties) in chimpanzees (Pan troglodytes) in 1979, it was not until the 1990s that research explicitly focused on post-conflict third-party affiliation. Most of these studies did not investigate the function of post-conflict third-party affiliation but merely demonstrated its occurrence or absence. In this chapter, I discuss post-conflict third-party affiliation involving the aggressor (see Watts et al., Chapter 14, for a discussion on postconflict third-party affiliation involving targets of aggression). The chapter focuses primarily on macaques because most studies of this affiliative behavior have been conducted on these species (Table 13.1). This is a relatively new field of study, and we are still in the phase of formulating working hypotheses for the function of this behavior. The chapter presents an overview of different types of post-conflict third-party affiliation and discusses hypotheses regarding their function with the intention to stimulate thinking and generate directions for future research. Throughout the chapter, the term conflict is used in the meaning of aggressive conflict.