Close social associations in animals and humans: functions and mechanisms of friendship

Close social associations in animals and humans: functions and mechanisms of friendship Review Close social associations in animals and humans: functions and mechanisms of friendship Jorg J.M. Massen 1,4) , Elisabeth H.M. Sterck 1,2) & Henk de Vos 3) ( 1 Department of Behavioural Biology, Utrecht University, Padualaan 8, 3584 CH Utrecht, The Netherlands; 2 Department of Ethology Research, Biomedical Primate Research Centre, Rijswijk, The Netherlands; 3 Department of Sociology, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands) (Accepted: 1 August 2010) Summary Both humans and group-living animals associate and behave affiliatively more with some in- dividuals than others. Human friendship has long been acknowledged, and recently scientists studying animal behaviour have started using the term friendship for close social associates in animals. Yet, while biologists describe friends as social tools to enhance fitness, social scientists describe human friendship as unconditional. We investigate whether these different descriptions reflect true differences in human friendship and animal close social associations or are a by-product of different research approaches: namely social scientists focussing on proximate and biologists on ultimate explanations. We first stress the importance of similar measures to determine close social associations, thereafter examine their ultimate benefits and proximate motivations, and discuss the latest findings on the central-neural regulation of social bonds. We conclude http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Behaviour Brill

Close social associations in animals and humans: functions and mechanisms of friendship

Behaviour, Volume 147 (11): 1379 – Jan 1, 2010

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Publisher
Brill
Copyright
© 2010 Koninklijke Brill NV, Leiden, The Netherlands
ISSN
0005-7959
eISSN
1568-539X
DOI
10.1163/000579510X528224
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

Review Close social associations in animals and humans: functions and mechanisms of friendship Jorg J.M. Massen 1,4) , Elisabeth H.M. Sterck 1,2) & Henk de Vos 3) ( 1 Department of Behavioural Biology, Utrecht University, Padualaan 8, 3584 CH Utrecht, The Netherlands; 2 Department of Ethology Research, Biomedical Primate Research Centre, Rijswijk, The Netherlands; 3 Department of Sociology, University of Groningen, Groningen, The Netherlands) (Accepted: 1 August 2010) Summary Both humans and group-living animals associate and behave affiliatively more with some in- dividuals than others. Human friendship has long been acknowledged, and recently scientists studying animal behaviour have started using the term friendship for close social associates in animals. Yet, while biologists describe friends as social tools to enhance fitness, social scientists describe human friendship as unconditional. We investigate whether these different descriptions reflect true differences in human friendship and animal close social associations or are a by-product of different research approaches: namely social scientists focussing on proximate and biologists on ultimate explanations. We first stress the importance of similar measures to determine close social associations, thereafter examine their ultimate benefits and proximate motivations, and discuss the latest findings on the central-neural regulation of social bonds. We conclude

Journal

BehaviourBrill

Published: Jan 1, 2010

Keywords: FRIENDSHIP; RELATIONSHIP QUALITY; CLOSE SOCIAL ASSOCIATIONS; RECIPROCAL ALTRUISM; COOPERATION; SOCIAL BENEFITS

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