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Love, War and Cultures: an Institutional Approach to Human Evolution

  • Ugo Pagano

    ()

Love, War and Culture have all played an important role in the evolution of human institutions and they have been characterized by complex relationships. War can select unselfish groups ready to sacrifice themselves for the love of their communities that they recognize to be culturally different from the others. At the same time, horizontal cultural differentiation cannot be taken for granted. Culture is the outcome of long evolutionary processes. It requires some human specific characteristics, including a large brain, that are likely to have been influenced by sexual selection and by the peculiar structure of human love affairs. Thus, if war may have generated love, also the reverse may be true: by favoring the development of human culture, love may have produced the conditions for war among culturally differentiated groups. In turn, war may have co-evolved with group solidarity only under the prevailing social arrangements of hunting and gathering economies. In general, human relations have been influenced by the prevailing features of the goods (private, public and positional) that have characterized production in different stages of history. They have been embedded in institutions involving very different levels of inequality, ranging from mostly egalitarian hunting and gathering societies to typically hierarchical agrarian societies and to wealthdifferentiated industrial societies. The perspectives of the present-day knowledge-intensive economy can also be seen through the same institutional approach to human evolution. The different nature of contemporary production processes involves a new set of alternative possible arrangements that have different implications for social (in)equality and different capabilities to satisfy basic human needs.

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Paper provided by Department of Economics, University of Siena in its series Department of Economics University of Siena with number 632.

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Date of creation: Feb 2012
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Handle: RePEc:usi:wpaper:632
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  1. Veblen, Thorstein, 1899. "The Theory of the Leisure Class," History of Economic Thought Books, McMaster University Archive for the History of Economic Thought, number veblen1899.
  2. Di Tommaso, M. L. & Shima, I. & Strøm, S. & Bettio, F., 2007. "As bad as it gets: Well being deprivation of sexually exploited trafficked women," Memorandum 09/2007, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
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  4. David, Paul A, 1985. "Clio and the Economics of QWERTY," American Economic Review, American Economic Association, vol. 75(2), pages 332-37, May.
  5. Ugo Pagano, 2007. "Cultural globalisation, institutional diversity and the unequal accumulation of intellectual capital," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 31(5), pages 649-667, September.
  6. Ugo Pagano, 2003. "Nationalism, development and integration: the political economy of Ernest Gellner," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 27(5), pages 623-646, September.
  7. Pagano, Ugo & Rowthorn, Robert, 1994. "Ownership, technology and institutional stability," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 5(2), pages 221-242, December.
  8. John S. Earle & Ugo Pagano & Maria Lesi, . "Information Technology, Organizational Form, and Transition to the Market," Upjohn Working Papers and Journal Articles jse20065, W.E. Upjohn Institute for Employment Research.
  9. Pagano, Ugo, 2000. "Public markets, private orderings and corporate governance," International Review of Law and Economics, Elsevier, vol. 20(4), pages 453-477, December.
  10. Samuel Bowles & Ugo Pagano, 2003. "Economic Integration, Cultural Standardization and the Politics of Social Insurance," Department of Economics University of Siena 408, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
  11. Ugo Pagano, 2010. "Interlocking Complementarities and Institutional Change," Department of Economics University of Siena 598, Department of Economics, University of Siena.
  12. Adam Gifford, 2009. "Rationality and intertemporal choice," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 11(3), pages 223-248, December.
  13. D'Antoni, Massimo & Pagano, Ugo, 2002. "National cultures and social protection as alternative insurance devices," Structural Change and Economic Dynamics, Elsevier, vol. 13(4), pages 367-386, December.
  14. Ugo Pagano & Maria Rossi, 2004. "Incomplete Contracts, Intellectual Property and Institutional Complementarities," European Journal of Law and Economics, Springer, vol. 18(1), pages 55-76, July.
  15. Richard Gilbert, 2011. "A World without Intellectual Property? A Review of Michele Boldrin and David Levine's Against Intellectual Monopoly," Journal of Economic Literature, American Economic Association, vol. 49(2), pages 421-32, June.
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  22. repec:cup:cbooks:9780521879286 is not listed on IDEAS
  23. Alberto Battistini & Ugo Pagano, 2008. "Primates’ fertilization systems and the evolution of the human brain," Journal of Bioeconomics, Springer, vol. 10(1), pages 1-21, April.
  24. Ugo Pagano & Maria Alessandra Rossi, 2009. "The crash of the knowledge economy," Cambridge Journal of Economics, Oxford University Press, vol. 33(4), pages 665-683, July.
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