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Machiavellian Intelligence II: Extensions and Evaluations 2nd Edition

2 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0521559492
ISBN-10: 0521559499
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Editorial Reviews


"This new book will bring readers up to date with the most important developments, extending the scope of the original ideas and evaluating them empirically from different perspectives." Animal Cognition

Book Description

Monkeys and apes use their intelligence to manipulate and outmanoeuvre others socially. The 'Machiavellian Intelligence Hypothesis' implies that it was for these social purposes that intelligence first developed, and was brought to fruition in humans. In 1988, Machiavellian Intelligence provided the groundwork for these ideas: in Machiavellian Intelligence II, they are evaluated empirically, and extended in many new directions. The book will be essential reading for all those interested in the behavioural sciences, primatology and evolution.


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 416 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; 2 edition (October 13, 1997)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521559499
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521559492
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.4 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,520,038 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Peter A. Kindle on June 19, 2003
Format: Paperback
Collected as a self-conscious extension of the 1988 work edited by Byrne and Whiten, "Machiavellian Intelligence: Social Expertise and the Evolution of Intellect in Monkeys, Apes, and Humans," this volume contains 14 articles. In spite of the explosion of empirical research sparked by the 1988 volume, this collection does not emphasize a review of this new work. Instead, one is left with the impression that this collection is heavily weighted toward theory and speculation.
My evaluation of this collection is that it contains less extension and more refinement of the 1988 presentation. The contributions in this volume tend to limit the grosser conclusions of the earlier work while refining the Machiavellian intelligence concept more precisely.
Only a few of the articles warrant specific note, in my opinion. I found Hauser's article on deception to be of value, especially in its careful distinction between functional and intentional deception. Whiten's review of theory of mind research holds promise for anyone interested in that subject. The three empirical articles, Russon's on exploiting expertise, Menzel's on foraging, and Barton and Dunbar on encephalization quotients, also make significant contributions.
New theoretical speculations regarding evolutionary triggers include brain modularity, technical expertise, sexual competition, and language left me wishing for more data and less speculation. Only the Boehm chapter on egalitarian behavior and intelligence seemed to warrant a second reading.
My advice is to skip this book and go straight to Sternberg and Kaufman's collection "The Evolution of Human Intelligence" (2001) or Corballis and Lea's "The Descent of Mind" (1999).
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By James G. Dangelo on June 5, 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a jaw dropping collection of papers on a topic that still deserves much more attention. Anthropology, indeed all rock music ("War what is it good for?") has yet to embrace our inner Niccolo (and let go of our awkward and self laudatory noble savage). Most of these papers are fresh, incisive and exceedingly well written. I'm in the process of rereading Geoffrey Miller's piece (chapter 12) which addresses the evolution of randomness (why butterflies don't fly straight or predictably) in order to avoid predation or murder. It has implications for everyone who feels they've really gotten to know someone...and sprinkles our hubris with humility. Skin tingling, I wanted to read other reviewers opinions of this book only to find a disturbing lack thereof. It is a shame the book is so poorly distributed and available at such a ridiculous expense (precisely why I don't have a copy of its predecessor). It certainly is the reason for the very insider comments by another reviewer. Perhaps he was so close to the subject it became difficult to see what a layman might experience. Hopefully this topic will one day reach the mainstream. Five stars. Deserves more.
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