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Andrew Buskell
Cambridge University
  1. Cultural Attractor Theory and Explanation.Andrew Buskell - 2017 - Philosophy, Theory, and Practice in Biology 9 (13).
    Cultural attractor theory (CAT) is a highly visible and audacious approach to studying human cultural evolution. However, the explanatory aims and some central explanatory concepts of CAT remain unclear. Here I remedy these problems. I provide a reconstruction of CAT that recasts it as a theory of forces. I then demonstrate how this reinterpretation of CAT has the resources to generate both cultural distribution and evolvability explanations. I conclude by examining the potential benefits and drawbacks of this reconstruction.
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  2. Looking for Middle Ground in Cultural Attraction Theory.Andrew Buskell - 2019 - Evolutionary Anthropology 28 (1):14-17.
    In their article, Thom Scott‐Phillips, Stefaan Blancke, and Christophe Heintz do a commendable job summarizing the position and misunderstandings of “cultural attraction theory” (CAT). However, they do not address a longstanding problem for the CAT framework; that while it has an encompassing theory and some well‐worked out case studies, it lacks tools for generating models or empirical hypotheses of intermediate generality. I suggest that what the authors diagnose as misunderstandings are instead superficial interpretive errors, resulting from researchers who have attempted (...)
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    Domains of Generality.Andrew Buskell & Marta Halina - 2017 - Behavioral and Brain Sciences 40.
    We argue that general intelligence, as presented in the target article, generates multiple distinct and non-equivalent characterisations. Clarifying this central concept is necessary for assessing Burkart et al.’s proposal that the cultural intelligence hypothesis is the best explanation for the evolution of general intelligence. We assess this claim by considering two characterisations of general intelligence presented in the article.
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