The Idea of Cultural Tranmission

published 5 years ago by BBC Radio

How cultural transmission across time and space keeps us well ahead of other species. Gillian Anderson explains.

WNED one way we differ from other animals is that we can Paulson all culture own knowledge of skills not just in face to face interactions. But across generations to strangers we've never met. Even those living long after we have died. Chimpanzees have a culture of sorts to different societies of chimps for instance use different tools to do the same job even though the same materials are available to them. One society of chimps uses sticks to get honey from trees while another uses chewed leaves as a kind of sponge to perform the same task. These are learned behaviors chimpanzees watch and copy tool uses around them. And so pick up these local patterns of behavior. But we humans can cause some what we learned over great distances and across time ...

more episodes from A History of Ideas animations