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Why cultures change - audio

by Professor Felipe Fernández-Armesto (William P. Reynolds Professor of History, University of Notre Dame, Indiana USA )

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Description

Archaeology and History are among many academic fields dedicated to the scrutiny, description and characterization of how cultures change; typically, practitioners show a lot of interest in why particular changes happen, but the problem of why they happen at all is rarely addressed except in the context of debate over whether the laws of evolution, or some similar laws, govern culture. The lecturer raids not just history and archaeology but a wide array of relevant disciplines, including ethology, primatology, biology and cognitive science, in an attempt to open previously unexplored and under-explored lines of enquiry and debate. He hopes to make new contributions to understanding change and the acceleration of change in cultural organisms generally and, especially, in human ones.