Adriaan Kortlandt

Last updated
Adriaan Kortlandt, lecturing in 1966. Kortland lecturing 1966.jpg
Adriaan Kortlandt, lecturing in 1966.
Kortlandt demonstrates how a goat responds to his goatlike attack. Kortlandt demonstration with goat.jpg
Kortlandt demonstrates how a goat responds to his goatlike attack.

Prof. Dr. Adriaan Kortlandt (25 January 1918, Rotterdam - 18 October 2009, Amsterdam) was a Dutch ethologist.

Contents

He was famous for his work on displacement activities (Dutch: overspronggedrag) [1] and the hierarchy of instincts. Already in the thirties he realised the common characteristics between instincts in humans and other animals. In one of his experiments in Western Africa he exposed a stuffed panther with an electronic moving head to chimpanzees, who attacked it with sticks, thus illustrating to which extent early man could have kept wild animals at bay even before spears and other weapons were invented.

He also was the author of the "Rift Valley theory", [2] better known under the name given by French paleoanthropologist Yves Coppens: "East Side Story".

Related Research Articles

Charles F. Hockett American linguist

Charles Francis Hockett was an American linguist who developed many influential ideas in American structuralist linguistics. He represents the post-Bloomfieldian phase of structuralism often referred to as "distributionalism" or "taxonomic structuralism". His academic career spanned over half a century at Cornell and Rice universities. Hockett was also a firm believer of linguistics as a branch of anthropology, making contributions that were significant to the field of anthropology as well.

Nikolaas Tinbergen Dutch Zoologist, ethologist

Nikolaas "Niko" Tinbergen was a Dutch biologist and ornithologist who shared the 1973 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Karl von Frisch and Konrad Lorenz for their discoveries concerning organization and elicitation of individual and social behavior patterns in animals. He is regarded as one of the founders of modern ethology, the study of animal behavior.

Ape superfamily of apes

Apes (Hominoidea) are a branch of Old World tailless simians native to Africa and Southeast Asia. They are the sister group of the Old World monkeys, together forming the catarrhine clade. They are distinguished from other primates by a wider degree of freedom of motion at the shoulder joint as evolved by the influence of brachiation. In traditional and non-scientific use, the term "ape" excludes humans, and can include tailless primates taxonomically considered monkeys, and is thus not equivalent to the scientific taxon Hominoidea. There are two extant branches of the superfamily Hominoidea: the gibbons, or lesser apes; and the hominids, or great apes.

<i>The Language Instinct</i> book by Steven Pinker

The Language Instinct is a 1994 book by Steven Pinker, written for a general audience. Pinker argues that humans are born with an innate capacity for language. He deals sympathetically with Noam Chomsky's claim that all human language shows evidence of a universal grammar, but dissents from Chomsky's skepticism that evolutionary theory can explain the human language instinct.

Comparative anatomy Study of similarities and differences in the anatomy of different species

Comparative anatomy is the study of similarities and differences in the anatomy of different species. It is closely related to evolutionary biology and phylogeny.

Eugène Dubois Dutch paleoanthropologist

Marie Eugène François Thomas Dubois was a Dutch paleoanthropologist and geologist. He earned worldwide fame for his discovery of Pithecanthropus erectus, or "Java Man". Although hominid fossils had been found and studied before, Dubois was the first anthropologist to embark upon a purposeful search for them.

Frans de Waal Dutch primatologist and ethologist

Franciscus Bernardus Maria "Frans" de Waal is a Dutch primatologist and ethologist. He is the Charles Howard Candler Professor of Primate Behavior in the Department of Psychology at Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia, director of the Living Links Center at the Yerkes National Primate Research Center at Emory, and author of numerous books including Chimpanzee Politics (1982) and Our Inner Ape (2005). His research centers on primate social behavior, including conflict resolution, cooperation, inequity aversion, and food-sharing. He is a member of the United States National Academy of Sciences and the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Comparative psychology refers to the scientific study of the behavior and mental processes of non-human animals, especially as these relate to the phylogenetic history, adaptive significance, and development of behavior. Research in this area addresses many different issues, uses many different methods and explores the behavior of many different species from insects to primates.

Animal languages are forms of non-human animal communication that show similarities to human language. Animals communicate by using a variety of signs such as sounds or movements. Such signing may be considered complex enough to be called a form of language if the inventory of signs is large, the signs are relatively arbitrary, and the animals seem to produce them with a degree of volition. In experimental tests, animal communication may also be evidenced through the use of lexigrams. While the term "animal language" is widely used, researchers agree that animal languages are not as complex or expressive as human language.

<i>The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex</i> 1871 book by Charles Darwin

The Descent of Man, and Selection in Relation to Sex is a book by English naturalist Charles Darwin, first published in 1871, which applies evolutionary theory to human evolution, and details his theory of sexual selection, a form of biological adaptation distinct from, yet interconnected with, natural selection. The book discusses many related issues, including evolutionary psychology, evolutionary ethics, differences between human races, differences between sexes, the dominant role of women in mate choice, and the relevance of the evolutionary theory to society.

Personal grooming specific behavior of an organism relating to grooming, cleaning and brushing to remove dirt and parasites

Grooming is the art of cleaning and maintaining parts of the body. It is a species-typical behavior.

<i>On Aggression</i> 1963 book by Konrad Lorenz

On Aggression is a 1963 book by the ethologist Konrad Lorenz; it was translated into English in 1966. As he writes in the prologue, "the subject of this book is aggression, that is to say the fighting instinct in beast and man which is directed against members of the same species."

The killer ape theory or killer ape hypothesis is the theory that war and interpersonal aggression was the driving force behind human evolution. It was originated by Raymond Dart in the 1950s; it was developed further in African Genesis by Robert Ardrey in 1961.

Monkey Animal of the "higher primates" (the simians), but excluding the apes

Monkey is a common name that may refer to groups or species of mammals, in part, the simians of infraorder Simiiformes. The term is applied descriptively to groups of primates, such as families of New World monkeys and Old World monkeys. Many monkey species are tree-dwelling (arboreal), although there are species that live primarily on the ground, such as baboons. Most species are also active during the day (diurnal). Monkeys are generally considered to be intelligent, especially the Old World monkeys of Catarrhini.

Yves Coppens French anthropologist

Yves Coppens is a Breton anthropologist and co-discoverer of the fossil known as "Lucy". A graduate from the University of Rennes and Sorbonne, he has studied ancient hominids and has had multiple published works on this topic, and has also produced a film. On Saturday, 18 October 2014, Professor Coppens was named an Ordinary Member of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences by Pope Francis.

Displacement activity

Displacement activities occur when an animal experiences high motivation for two or more conflicting behaviours: the resulting displacement activity is usually unrelated to the competing motivations. Birds, for example, may peck at grass when uncertain whether to attack or flee from an opponent; similarly, a human may scratch their head when they do not know which of two options to choose. Displacement activities may also occur when animals are prevented from performing a single behaviour for which they are highly motivated. Displacement activities often involve actions which bring comfort to the animal such as scratching, preening, drinking or feeding.

Veneer theory is a term coined by Dutch primatologist Frans de Waal to label the Hobbesian view of human morality that he criticizes throughout his work. Although he criticizes this view in earlier works, the term in this form is introduced in his 2005 book "Our Inner Ape", denoting a concept that he rejects, namely that human morality is "a cultural overlay, a thin veneer hiding an otherwise selfish and brutish nature". The idea of the veneer theory goes back to Thomas Henry Huxley and has more recently been advocated by biologists like George C. Williams.

The history of evolutionary psychology began with Charles Darwin, who said that humans have social instincts that evolved by natural selection. Darwin's work inspired later psychologists such as William James and Sigmund Freud but for most of the 20th century psychologists focused more on behaviorism and proximate explanations for human behavior. E. O. Wilson's landmark 1975 book, Sociobiology, synthesized recent theoretical advances in evolutionary theory to explain social behavior in animals, including humans. Jerome Barkow, Leda Cosmides and John Tooby popularized the term "evolutionary psychology" in their 1992 book The Adapted Mind: Evolutionary Psychology and The Generation of Culture. Like sociobiology before it, evolutionary psychology has been embroiled in controversy, but evolutionary psychologists see their field as gaining increased acceptance overall.

Gibbon–human last common ancestor Gibbon–human last common ancestor

The phylogenetic split of the superfamily Hominoidea (apes) into the Hylobatidae (gibbons) and Hominidae families is dated to the early Miocene, roughly 20 to 16 million years ago.

The Man I Became is a fictional work written by Dutch postmodernist writer Peter Verhelst. It is translated from the Dutch by David Colmer. The satirical work focuses on modern society's excessive materialism and individualism. Set primarily in a location known as "Dreamland", an amusement park designed to integrate animals into a human society, the story is told from the perspective of an unnamed captive gorilla as he progresses through the trials of becoming human.

References

  1. Displacement Activities and Arousal
  2. Kortlandt, A. (1972) - New perspectives on ape and human evolution, Amsterdam, Stichting voor Psychobiologie.

Select publications

Kleindienst, M. R., Burton, F. D., & Kortlandt, A. (1975). On new perspectives on ape and human evolution. Current Anthropology, 16(4), 644-651. Link to article