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The Labour Theory of Culture: A Re-examination of Engels' Theory of Human Origins
Linköping University, REMESO - Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and Society. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences. Linköping University, Department of Social and Welfare Studies.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1933-3847
2009 (English)Book (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

Despite its importance in understanding the social relations of labour little attention has been paid by Western Marxists to evolutionary theory. Taking as a starting point an unfinished essay by Engels, the author argues that the human species must be seen as discontinuous with its nearest biological ancestors – that a qualitative distinction was brought about by social labour. It is argued that the most likely forms of human organization were co-operative and field studies are discussed which apparently provide evidence for tool use and linguistic ability among the higher primates. The relationship between hand and brain in terms of Marxist psychology is also elaborated.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Routledge , 2009, 2. , 124 p.
, Routledge Library Editions, 42
Keyword [en]
Human evolution, culture, Marxist theory
National Category
Cultural Studies
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-56727ISBN: 978-0-415-55583-8OAI: diva2:321648
Available from: 2010-06-01 Created: 2010-06-01 Last updated: 2014-10-08Bibliographically approved

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Woolfson, Charles
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REMESO - Institute for Research on Migration, Ethnicity and SocietyFaculty of Arts and SciencesDepartment of Social and Welfare Studies
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