‘Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age’ Book Club

This month, the ICCI website is hosting a Book Club devoted to Alberto Acerbi’s book, ‘Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age’.

“Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age” Book Club General Discussion

Join the discussion of our Book Club here!

You will find on the Book Club page: the précis of the book by Alberto Acerbi, commentaries by Alex Mesoudi, Hugo Mercier, Mathieu Charbonneau, Olivier Morin, Pascal Boyer, Sacha Altay and Tiffany Morisseau, and finally Alberto's response to the commentaries. The general discussion starts today and will continue until July 12th. Everyone is welcome to join.

To post a comment, you should be registered and logged in. Please provide a short title for your comment. If it responds to another commentator, you might use “@Xxx” in your title. New comments appear at the bottom.

Comments are moderated and may only appear after a short delay. For any practical question, send an email to: tiffany@cognitionandculture.net.

...

Read More

Alberto Acerbi’s response: There is much work to do

It was a great pleasure having a book club dedicated to Cultural evolution in the digital age. Writing a book feels like a long and solitary experience and it is comforting that, when done, it may result in such productive exchanges. Thus, first of all, I want to thank the organisers, Tiffany Morisseau and Dan Sperber, and all the participants for their commentaries: kind, sometimes even flattering, but always perceptive and stimulating. I organised my reply around three macro-themes that emerged in the book club: the role of producers of cultural traits, the features of specifically digital cultural transmission, and a discussion on some more foundational issues in cultural evolution, namely the importance of faithful transmission for cumulative culture and our reliance on social information.

...

Read More

Truth is not always the point

Thank you, Alberto, for writing this book! In addition to being a captivating reading, it shed light on some thoughts I had on how people share information on social media, and what truth has to do

Read More

Cultural evolution – The mystery of production

Alberto Acerbi’s book is not just an impressive and timely summary of our knowledge of cultural transmission in the digital world (that in itself would be a good reason to read it). It also

Read More

The Participatory Age

Of central interest to Alberto, and to cultural evolutionists in general, are the impacts of the transmission of cultural information from one person to the next—what is transmitted to whom, where

Read More

Consuming vs. sharing information online

In his brilliant book, Alberto notes a series of significant differences between information sharing in oral cultures and online (to take two extremes). Oral cultures are dependent on memorization

Read More

Cultural transmission, reinvention, and progress

I sometimes wonder why some of the cleverest things about the digital age seem to date from before the digital age really started. Few philosophical analyses beat thought experiments like Turing's

Read More

What’s the recipe?

In his book, Alberto pointed out that information can now be passed on, and ultimately become cultural, without being memorized or even understood. But online information can also become cultural

Read More

Are humans ‘wary learners’?

I thoroughly enjoyed reading Alberto Acerbi’s Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age (Acerbi, 2019). It provides not only a much-needed corrective to overblown claims about the power of social

Read More

A précis of ‘Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age’

When, at the beginning of 2016, I started to think about the project that would have become the book Cultural evolution in the digital age, my goal was to apply cultural evolution theory to a topic

Read More

‘Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age’ Book Club

Alberto Acerbi’s timely new book, Cultural Evolution in the Digital Age, offers a cultural evolutionary perspective on our behavior online, and on its cumulative effects on information diffusion

Read More