The book aims to integrate our understanding of mammalian societies into a novel synthesis that is relevant to behavioural ecologists, ecologists, and anthropologists. It adopts a coherent structure that deals initially with the characteristics and strategies of females, before covering those of males, cooperative societies and hominid societies. It reviews our current understanding both of the structure of societies and of the strategies of individuals; it combines coverage of relevant areas of theory with coverage of interspecific comparisons, intraspecific comparisons and experiments; it explores both evolutionary causes of different traits and their ecological consequences; and it integrates research on different groups of mammals with research on primates and humans and attempts to put research on human societies into a broader perspective.
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