Natural Conflict Resolution

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

CHAPTER 17
The Evolution and
Development of Morality
Melanie Killen & Frans B. M. de Waal

What are the origins of morality, both phylogenetically and ontogenetically? Phylogeny deals with possible homologies between species and with stages of evolution over millions of years. Naturally, evolution also deals with the issue of adaptive function. After all, how could we have evolved moral tendencies if such tendencies lacked positive effects on survival and reproduction? The ontogenetic question, however, focuses on the development over a much more limited time, between infancy and adulthood, within a single species. In this chapter, we make two fundamental assertions regarding the evolution of morality: (1) there are specific types of behavior demonstrated by both human and nonhuman primates that hint at a shared evolutionary background to morality; and (2) there are theoretical and actual connections between morality and conflict resolution in both nonhuman primates and human development.

In our analysis of the literature we make several points that apply to both human and nonhuman primates. First, the transition from nonmoral or premoral to moral is more gradual than commonly assumed. No magic point appears in either evolutionary history or human development at which morality suddenly comes into existence. In both early childhood and in animals closely related to us, we can recognize behaviors (and, in the case of children, judgments) that are essential building blocks of the morality of the human adult. Second, we theorize that the phylogenetic origins of human morality can be detected in the social interactions of nonhuman primates, our closest biological relatives, and the ontogenetic origins of morality can be observed in the early social

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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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