Term Paper: Do Animals Have Culture?

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¶ … animals have culture?

Animal Culture

Culture in animals has been a controversial issue especially when people hear of culture deviated from the norm. Animal culture is slowly gaining popularity; it entails social transmission of behavior among animal species from generation to generation. Cross-Cultural Capability in animals also deals with the values and skills impacted on an animal to enable it to live and interrelate with other creatures in a multicultural way (Whitehead, 2010). The transmitted behavior can be shared within a group of animals but not specific between different groups of the same species of animal. Behavior among the animals can be transmitted in a variety of ways, such as; through language, teaching and imitation.

Culture in animals started in the ancient times, but it advancement started around the year 1940 where the Japanese scientist (primatologist) found the impact of food of primates behavior leading to the creation of socially transmitted food behavior among them. During those times and even now, primates are more commonly used in an experiment to find out whether there is culture among animals because of their proximity in resemblance to human beings. This theory relies on the fact that there are some cultural traits which are developed as a result of repeating the same event daily or as a routine practice in an animal's life (Laland, 2009). This culture are mostly adopted by animals if they have a positive impact on them such as if they are associated with food or those actions which determine their survival rate. For example an experiment done on chimpanzees where they were shown to use sticks in such a way that they can access food more easily, with time the chimpanzees were able to, not only utilize, the sticks but also, other tools in their effort to reach for food. Therefore, this became one of their culture.

Mimicry in animals is the most commonly used among the three methods, on the other hand, the use of teaching and less of language can best be used on certain specific species of animals with a higher cultural capabilities, but not all. Animals, especially those with the same genes, acquired mostly through birth are more likely to develop the culture more than other animals of the same species. Transmission of behavior into these animals takes time and while doing so the vicinity should be conducive for the animals so as to focus their attention towards learning and mastering the behavior. There… [END OF PREVIEW]

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Do Animals Have Culture?.  (2012, February 21).  Retrieved December 11, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/animals-culture/340402

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"Do Animals Have Culture?."  21 February 2012.  Web.  11 December 2019. <https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/animals-culture/340402>.

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"Do Animals Have Culture?."  Essaytown.com.  February 21, 2012.  Accessed December 11, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/animals-culture/340402.