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This chapter contains the basic theory on Homo domesticus.

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  1. 1. © Oscar Carvajal 2005All rights reserved HOMO DOMESTICUS THEORY INTRODUCTIONSociety and ecology seem deeply linked to domestication, which may be the most threatening force actingon earth today, where the human may be its most immediate victim. This theoretical interdisciplinaryanalysis re-imagines domestication as the condition of housing—the built environment, leading toconsider the human species as Homo domesticus. In terms of domestication, social and natural studies traditionally employ the metaphor ofdomestication to understand relationships among human beings and other organisms, things, and ideas.Baring in mind that this study considers the traditional notion of domestication an understanding oftaming, the following bibliographic survey indicates the comprehensive way in which authors identify theimplications of domestication (taming). Some authors apply the metaphor of domestication (taming) to animals and plants: Darwin,to animals and plants;1 Raisor and Fox, to dogs;2 Price and Grandin, to animals;3 Zohary, to plants;4Simmons, to cattle;5 Schorger, to the turkey;6 Laufer, to the reindeer;7 Roberts, to turtles;8 andMatthew, to the horse.9 Other authors apply the metaphor of domestication to different socialaspects: Rogers, to women;10 Fadlon, to alternative medicine;11 Gregoriou, to cosmopolitanism;12 1 Charles Darwin, The Variation of Animals and Plants Under Domestication (London: J. Murray, 1868). 2 Michelle Jeanette Raisor, Determining the Antiquity of Dog Origins: Canine Domestication as a Modelfor the Consilience Between Molecular Genetics and Archaeology (Oxford, England: Archaeopress, 2005); MichaelW. Fox, The Dog: Its Domestication & Behavior (New York: Garland STPM, 1978), and Canine behavior; a historyof domestication, behavioral development and adult behavior patterns, neurophysiology, psychobiology, training,inheritance, early experience and psycho-social relationships, experimental neuroses and spontaneous behavioralabnormalities, congenital anomalies and differential diagnosis of diseases (Springfield, ILL.: Thomas, 1965). 3 Edward O. Price, Animal Domestication and Behavior (Wallingford, England; New York: CABI Pub.,2002); Temple Grandin, Genetics and the Behavior of Domestic Animals (San Diego: Academic Press, 1988); andPeter J. Ucko and G. W. Dimblebay, eds., The Domestication and Exploitation of Plants and Animals [ResearchSeminar in Archaeology and Related Subjects (1968: London University)] (London: Duckworth, 1969). 4 Daniel Zohary, Domestication of Plants in the Old World: The Origin and Spread of Cultivated Plants inWest Asia, Europe and the Nile Valley (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2000). 5 Frederick J. Simmons, A Ceremonial Ox of India: The Mithan in Nature, Culture, and History, with Noteson the Domestication of Common Cattle (Madison: University of Wisconsin Press, 1968); and A. E. Mourant andF.E. Zeuner, eds., Symposium on Domestication, Royal Anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, 1960,in Man and Cattle: Proceedings of a Symposium on Domestication at the Royal Anthropological Institute, 24-26May 1960 (London: Royal anthropological Institute of Great Britain and Ireland, 1963). 6 Arlie William Schorger, The Wild Turkey: Its History and Domestication [1st ed.] (Norman: University ofOklahoma Press, 1966). 7 Berthold Laufer, The Reindeer and its Domestication (New York: Kraus Reprint, 1964). 8 Mervin F. Roberts, Turtles as Pets (Neptune City, N.J.: TFH [Tropical Fish Hobbyist] Publications,1960). 9 Matthew William Diller, Evolution of the Horse (New York: American Museum of Natural History[AMNH], 1927). 10 Barbara Rogers, The Domestication of Women: Discrimination in Developing Societies (London; NewYork: Tavistock Publications, 1981). 11 Judith Fadlon, Negotiating the Holistic Turn: The Domestication of Alternative Medicine (Albany: StateUniversity of New York Press, 2005). 1
  2. 2. Schneider, to [North] American Methodism;13 Whitworth, to foreign corporations;14 and Berker, tomedia and technology.15 Some authors consider, in a traditional way of the notion, the domestication (taming) ofplaces and the physical world: Mannion, of carbon;16 Hann, of the Turkish state;17 Hodder, ofEurope;18 Yener, of metals;19 and Rogachev, of outer space.20 Other authors see domestication inhuman attributes, values, and interests: Dörfer, to glory;21 Brenner, to desire;22 McCutcheon, todissent;23 Cobb, to violence;24 Warner, to blue notes;25 Brock, to the hero-figure;26 Godbout andCaille, to gift;27 and Regazzola, to movement.28 Finally, authors apply the metaphor of domestication to certain religious 29 30concepts: Wentz, to the divine; Placher and Young, to transcendence; and Roberts, to anti-Semitism.31 12 Zelia Gregoriou, ―Resisting the Pedagogical Domestication of Cosmopolitanism: From Nussbaum‘sConcentric Circles of Humanity to Derrida‘s Aporetic Ethics of Hospitality,‖ Philosophy of Education (2003): 257-66. 13 A. Gregory Schneider, The Way of the Cross Leads Home: The Domestication of American Methodism(Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1993). 14 John Ford Whitworth, The creation of corporations for profit in Pennsylvania: under the Corporationact of April 29, 1874, and its supplements, the merger, consolidation, judicial sale and reorganization of suchcorporations, the domestication of foreign corporations, the practice in the office of the secretary of thecommonwealth relating thereto and a collection of forms (Philadelphia T. & J. W. Johnson Company, 1906). 15 Thomas Berker, Domestication of Media and Technology (Maidenhead: Open University Press, 2006). 16 Antoinette M. Mannion, Carbon and its Domestication (Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Springer, 2006). 17 C. M. Hann, Tea and the Domestication of the Turkish State (Huntingdon: Eothen Press, 1990). 18 Ian Hodder, The Domestication of Europe: Structure and Contingency in Neolithic Societies (Oxford,England; Cambridge, Mass.: Blackwell, 1990). 19 K. Aslihan Yener, The Domestication of Metals: The Rise of Complex Metal Industries in Anatolia,Culture and History of the Ancient Near East Vol. 4 (Boston: Brill, 2000); and Jak Yakar, ―The Domestication ofMetals: The Rise of Complex Metal Industries in Anatolia,‖ Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research324 (November 2001): 114-17. 20 Vladimir Rogachev, ―Free Discussion Planned at Intl Space Conference,‖ [Information TelegraphAgency of Russia] ITAR - TASS News Wire, New York, April 2001: 1. The so-called ―outer space‖ explorationactually hides ―inner space‖ surveillance from outer space. 21 Ingemar Dörfer, System 37 Viggen; Arms, Technology and the Domestication of Glory (Oslo:Universitetsforlaget, 1973). 22 Suzanne April Brenner, The Domestication of Desire: Women, Wealth, and Modernity in Java(Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1998); Evelyn Blackwood, ―The Domestication of Desire: Women,Wealth, and Modernity in Hava,‖ The Journal of Asian Studies (JAS) 60, no. 3 (August 2001): 915-6; and ReneDevisch and Claude Brodeur, The Law of the Lifegivers: The Domestication of Desire (Amsterdam, TheNetherlands: Hardwood Academics; Abingdon: Marston, 1999). 23 Russel T. McCutcheon, Religion and the Domestication of Dissent, or, How to Live in a Less ThanPerfect Nation (London; Oakville, Conn.: Equinox Pub., 2005). 24 Sara Cobb, ―The Domestication of Violence in Mediation,‖ Law & Society Review (LSR) 31, no. 3(1997): 397-440. 25 Naphtali Wagner, ―‗Domestication‘ of Blue Notes in the Beatles‘ Songs,‖ Music TheorySpectrum (Spectrum) [official journal of the Society for Music Theory (SMT)] 25, no. 2 (Fall 2003): 353-65. 26 Claire Brock, ―Rousseauvian Remains,‖ History Workshop Journal (HWJ) 55, no. 1 (Spring 2003): 134-42. 27 Jacques T. Godbout and Alain Caille, ―The World of the Gift,‖ Anthropos 98, no. 1 (2003): 237-8. 28 Tomaso Regazzola, La Domestication du Mouvement: Poussées Mobilisatrices et Surrection de lÉtat(Paris: Editions Anthropos, 1981). 29 Richard E. Wentz, ―The Domestication of the Divine,‖ Theology Today 57, no. 1 (April 2000): 24-34. 30 William Carl Placher, The Domestication of Transcendence: How Modern Thinking About God WentWrong (Louisville, Ky.: Westminster John Knox Press, 1996); and Richard A. Young, ―The Domestication of 2
  3. 3. In terms of human domestication, as this next bibliographic survey indicates, various socialand natural science authors speak about the domestication of humans. However, their contributionsremain scattered, referring to domestication of separate dimensions of the human experience,without providing an integrated theory regarding the domestication of the human species, per se.While none of these authors employ the term Homo domesticus explicitly or deal with the conceptin a wholistic and rigorous manner, each one of them contributes in part to this study on humandomestication and Homo domesticus.32 Peter J. Wilson speaks of the domestication of the human species, investigating theethnographic implications of the formation of small villages and towns, particularly in thePalaeolithic-Neolithic transition.33 Ruth Tringham refers to sedentism as the domestication ofhumans.34 John A. Livingston refers to the role of ideology in the domestication of humans.35 JackGoody refers to the implications of the scribal culture in the development of human domestication.36Claude Lévi-Strauss speaks of the shift from myth to philosophy and to science, and refers tohuman domestication from an ethno-cultural dichotomy approach, contrasting the Neolithic humansas savage and the modern as domesticated.37 Helen M. Leach reconsiders human domestication inrelation to biological variation resulting from sedentism.38 Keiichi Omoto and Peter Sloterdijk referto human domestication through bio-physiological modification via genetic engineering.39 Enhanced definition of domesticationThis study seeks to enhance the notion of domestication to gain an inside into the human and humanrelations. The enhanced notion of domestication includes a differentiation between taming anddomestication, considering the influence exercised by the physical built environment. Domestication implies a direct influence of the built environment on organisms. Taking housingas epitome of the built environment, domestication relates to housing. Naturalist John A. Livingstoncontends that domestication literally means ―to bring it into our house.‖40 Domestication refers to theconditioning influence the presence of housing, architecture, or the built environment (used hereinterchangeably, in the broad sense) imposes on organisms. Whether they are inside or outside the house,Transcendence: How Modern Thinking About God Went Wrong,‖ Journal of the Evangelical TheologicalSociety (JETS) 42, no. 3 (September 1999): 546-59. 31 Andrew Roberts, ―The Roots of Hitler‘s Murderous Anti-Semitism,‖ The Daily Telegraph, London UK 8November 2003: 04. 32 Peter Hercules refers to Homo domesticus in his self-published electronic book, but his treatment of it islimited to an application from a psychological perspective. Peter Hercules, Liberating the Caged Human Animal(2002 copyright), [homepage of Dr. Peter Hercules] [online], available:[2006, January 15]. David Valdes uses the term Homo Domesticus to portray a same-sex relationship. DavidValdes Greenwood, Homo Domesticus: Notes from a Same-Sex Marriage (Cambridge, MA: Da Capo Press, 2007). 33 Peter J. Wilson, The Domestication of the Human Species (New Haven and London: Yale UniversityPress, 1988). 34 Ruth Tringham, Unit Title: Life in the Neolithic 1 - Living in Houses (N.A.) [online], available: [2005, December 18]. 35 John A. Livingston, Rogue Primate: An Exploration of Human Domestication (Toronto: Key PorterBooks Limited, 1994). 36 Jack Goody, The Domestication of the Savage Mind (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1977). 37 Claude Lévi-Strauss, The Savage Mind (London: Librairie Plon, 1962). 38 Helen M. Leach, et al, ―Human Domestication Reconsidered.‖ Current Anthropology (CA) 44, no. 3(June 2003): 349-68. 39 Keiichi Omoto, Jinrui no Jiko Kachikuka to Gendai (Human Self-domestication and Modern Society)(Kyoto: Jinbun Shoin, 2002); and Peter Sloterdijk, Regeln für den Menschenpark (Regulations for the Human Park)(Suhrkamp Verlag: Frankfurt am Main, 1999). 40 Livingston, Ibid, 15. 3
  4. 4. organisms are conditioned by the built environment through the influence of its very presence. Thearchitectural presence domesticates living organisms. Domestication and taming represent different dimensions of a similar conditioning process.Domestication refers to the conditions imposed on organisms by housing; taming refers to conditioningtechniques other than housing employed on organisms which reflect and reinforce housing. Tamingrefers to the utilization of the immediate contexts and sets of ideologies, sciences, techniques, andtechnologies to achieve, foster, and perpetuate relations of domination via sociological, psychological,physiological, and biological conditioning (see Appendix 1: Methods of Taming). While the builtenvironment influences culture, culture influences ideology (which influences physically and meta-physically, but originates meta-physically, as an idea) and vice versa. The influence of the builtenvironment refers to the influence (physical or meta-physical) originated physically (as or in relation to atangible thing) by the presence or expectancy of built environments. Conditioning via methodologies(including ideology, technology, and technique) represents taming and conditioning via the builtenvironment represents domestication. Domestication refers to ontological distortion through the built environment. The human builtenvironment establishes the context for domestication. As humans build an environment it in returndomesticates. The house or domestic realm universally materializes and epitomizes domestication.Domestication is the built environment conditioning ontology. Humans have also undergonedomestication for generations. Domestication and the humanThe notion of human domestication also becomes a theoretical tool to understand ancient and modernearthly life. It assists in identifying social and ecological dynamics of domination. Practically, everyreality on earth evolves under the influence and condition of domestication. Humans undergo thedomesticating influence of the built environment. There have been specific instances throughout history when humans have tamed other humans inthe sense of purposefully breeding and deliberately manipulating genetic and/or behavioural patterns, andeven though authors initially refer to that dynamic as domestication, it refers to processes and methods oftaming humans that mainly rely on the science of human knowledge or ideology.41 One way to conceptualize the condition influenced by domestication on humans is consideringtwo human aspects: the ontological and the behavioural. Ontologically, domestication refers to the waysthe built environment shapes the genetic makeup or nature of humans. Human ontology (Greek, study ofbeing) here, in the Platonic sense, refers to the human being as an existent entity, and in the Aristoteliansense, to the characterization of that human being as existent entity. That domestication influences thevery ontology of humans argues that domestication influences the very being of the modern human as anexistent entity. Domestication has moved from being an external influence to the human to become acharacteristic of the existent entity of the human. That human domestication refers to the very ontologicaltransformative distortion of the human implies that the modern human can be regarded as an existententity characteristically domesticated. Humans can be considered domesticated beings. Behaviourally, domestication refers to the ways the built environment shapes structurally andfunctionally the human within the larger ecological environment. Domestication influences the place ofthe human within the entire earthly and universal system, structure, or organism. Domestication furtherinfluences the way the human relates or functions in regards to themselves and other organisms orsubsystems. Domesticated humans shape nature in a domesticated way. Humans could be considereddomesticators, but they act as tamers. Another way to conceptualize the condition influenced by domestication on humans isconsidering four human dimensions, namely, anthropological, cosmological, social, and ecological.Anthropologically, that humans are domesticated refers to humans as beings that have been conditioned 41 Plato refers to the breeding of Spartan rulers or guardians. The Republic of Plato, Francis McDonaldCornford, trans. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1941), 160. 4
  5. 5. by the built environment, who reflect and reinforce the characteristics of tamed organisms, and whodisplay the capacity to tame and domesticate other beings. Humans have become characteristicallydomesticated. Modern humans are born, grew up, and die conditioned by the built environment.Cosmologically, domesticated humans see the world around them with domesticated eyes. Modernhuman perception refers to human domesticated perception. Modern human science refers to humandomesticated science. Human imagination refers to human domesticated imagination. Humandomesticated cosmology delineates framed under the influence of the built environment. Domesticatedhumans display a characteristic incapacity to appreciate their larger cosmos without a domesticatingperspective. Socially, human societies reflect and reinforce the tamed and domesticated characteristic ofhumans. Society refers to the association of humanity which predominantly characterizes by its tamedand domesticated, taming and domesticating condition. Modern society actually emerges as a product ofhuman domestication, fundamentally composed by domesticated humans. Human domesticated societyfollows the condition of the built environment. Ecologically, domesticated humans approach and relate totheir larger natural environment from a domesticated point of view. The ecological involvement ofdomesticated humans remarkably distinguishes by its domesticating nature. Earthly ecology evolvesunder the domesticating penetration and control of the human built environment. Domestication characterizes relations of domination among humans and the human relation to thelarger environment. For instance, palaces are architectural constructions that establish the existence andpresence of empires, hence of emperors. Facing the presence of a palace, people can establish their socialvalue in relation to the palace. The palace defines who is inside and who is outside, who rules and who isruled. And rule refers to domination; in this case, it clearly refers to human domination. People who livein palaces are evidently separated by the walls of the palace from their natural environment. Thisseparation affects human relation with the environment. Humanity has evolved in the context ofdomestication, understanding the social and ecological character of domestication enhances theunderstanding of both humanity and domination. This study considers the general influence ofdomestication on humanity, but focuses on exploring how an understanding of human domesticationinforms a critique of domination. Human domestication and dominationDomination refers to the control against individuals, species, or environments. It has been exercised bydifferent means, one of them conditioning, which refers to an external influence on organisms. One ofsuch external influences can be regarded as domestication. There are and have been other forms ofdomination besides domestication, especially since sociologists, anthropologists, ethnographers,palaeontologists, and archaeologists argue that methods of domination existed long before human-madehousing was developed. They speak of band formation, sporadic attacks, tool and fire making, hunting,and collection among nomad societies.42 Domestication functions, among other forms of domination, asone way of domination. It is widely known and accepted that domestication (taming) mediates a domination of animalsand plants that can be denominated ecological domination. The human built environment conditions thesurvival of numerous species of animals and plants. And humans also undergo domestication. The builtenvironment also conditions the survival of modern humans. Hence domestication refers to a dynamic ofsurvival and domination also at the anthropological, cosmological, sociological, and ecological levels.Thus domestication underlies ecological and social domination. Architecture generates and intensifies domestication mediating power accumulation andecological and social domination. Marvin Harris has identified similar political-economical systems in 42 Rosen considers that ―the presence of small arrowheads (fragments) and microlithic lunates…suggests acontinued role for hunting in this early [the Camel Site, Negev Early Bronze Age] pastoral society, or perhaps lowlevel warfare.‖ Steven A. Rosen, ―Early Multi-resource Nomadism: Excavations at the Camel Site in the CentralNegev,‖ Antiquity 77, no. 298 (December 2003): 749. 5
  6. 6. ancient China, India, Mesopotamia, Cuzco, and Egypt.43 These systems were characterized by thepresence of highly centralized bureaucratic classes and hereditary despotic overlords. These elitesclaimed divine mandates and mediating powers, even divinity, using architecture.44 Palaces, temples, andtombs were of particular importance, embodying architecturally dominating social institutions. Suchrulers organized society architecturally and maintained order using plain force to demand submission ofunderlings. Mesopotamians and Incas resettled defeated troops as peasant force and indoctrinated enemyleaders with imperial politics and religion. Domestication builds empire. Great architecture is synonymof great empire and vice versa. The process of architecture, indeed of domestication, refers to a process of ecological and socialdomination. Humans rely on and favor the development of architecture to maintain and advance thetaming and domestication of animals and plants, indeed of other humans. Through housing, humanschallenge the elements. Shelters alter time cycles (day and night), influence sources of energy (diurnalfood and nocturnal sleep), and disturb life moods (awaken and asleep). By altering life cycles, energysources, and organic moods, housing alters the human condition, including its feelings, needs, etc.Furthermore, elites would strive to control the housing or architectural domain and its industry. Socialelites would reinforce housing as a human need for social domination and the sake of power.45 Human domestication established through architecture has evolved to such a degree that it hasbeen taken for granted and even desired. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) by theUnited Nations (UN) in 1948 claims: ―Everyone has the right to a standard of living,‖ includinghousing.46 It is estimated housing appeared 40,000 years ago. Within the 2.5 million years of humanhistory, housing represents a relative recent development, popularized in the last 10,000 years (seeAppendix 2: A History of Pre-Human Life). Dynamically changing and mutating limited and exclusive social circles of humans, bothconcentrated and dispersed throughout the world, here denominated elites, dominate human populationsthrough the built environment. The United Nations reaffirmed on June 15, 2006, its study released onMarch 25, 2004, by the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs (DESA),which projected that the fifty percent of the human population would live in urban settings in 2007;47 by2030 five billion humans would live in cities, two billions of whom would live in slums.48 Sheltersrepresent a cultural development or created need rather than a natural need. Elites take advantage ofhousing for status and control purposes. Powerful multinational corporations in cooperation with state 43 North American anthropologist Marvin Harris (1927-2001). 44 McMillan speaks of progressive politics as the taming of power, and refers to the United States‘ socialstructure ―by far the greatest concentration of organized power in the modern world.‖ Joyce McMillan, ―Blair‘sHigh-Risk Strategy: The Taming of America,‖ The Scotsman (February 2003): 14. 45 English anthropologist Ruth Tringham designed at the UC-Berkeley Archaeological Research Facility(ARF) a module for sixth grade students at UC-Berkeley/Roosevelt Middle School Oakland, intended to help themthink ―about humans domesticating plants and animals, as well as how the humans themselves become domesticatedthrough learning to live with each other in confined spaces (architecture).‖ ―The Neolithic is a time when peoplebegan to settle down and construct and live in dwellings, which would last not only throughout the year but also formany years, perhaps many generations. This change that archaeologists call ‗sedentism‘ is an important prelude tosome other significant changes. Some of us think this is the most important change since it means the domesticationof humans.‖ Tringham, 46 Universal Declaration of Human Rights: Article 25 (1), adopted and proclaimed by General Assemblyresolution 217 A (III) of 10 December 1948), Universal Declaration of Human Rights [UDHR] (2000-2006), UnitedNations [online], available: [2006, March 20]. 47 [United Nations] UN Report Says World Urban Population of 3 Billion Today Expected to Reach 5Billion by 2030 (2004 copyright), United Nations Information Service (UNIS) [online], available: [2006, July 6]. 48 Guardian Unlimited: Urban Population to Overtake Country Dwellers for First Time (2006 copyright),Guardian Newspapers Limited [online], available:,,1798774,00.html [2006, July 6]. 6
  7. 7. governments and other political, economic, financial, industrial, and commercial groups seek to controlthe construction, and particularly the housing, market.49 An obvious observation from daily life, it is neither a secret nor is it a naïve coincidence that thesocio-geographic landscape of modern, as well as ancient, settlements corresponds to a planned, executed,and controlled process of architectural imbalance of social stratification. One can tell the differencebetween impoverished neighborhoods and privileged zones by noticing their architectural differences.Present human life seems impossible without housing, provided and regulated by human elites. Domestication represents a pervasive underlying dynamic of domination. Even more, housingdesign and building technology tend to self-replicate. Domestic humans understand and behaveaccording to a conditioning situation represented by housing and architecture.50 Domesticated humansreplicate social and ecological structures and systems that have been historically developed to frame theirexistence. They build their life experience on the principles laid down for them, in many wayscorresponding to architectural design. They replicate their condition in every aspect of their ontological,cosmological, social, and ecological experience. They carry on their life experience within the constraintsof specific functions designed and imposed on them. The functionality of domestic humans responds to the structural domesticated condition.Domesticated humans reflect a conditioned ontology, articulated in disturbed cosmology, and imbued intheir own artificiality, reflected in a deformed social arrangement and dysfunctional ecological presence.Domesticated humans search for survival under the shadows of their built environment, deceived bypower and domination. The notion of human domestication represents a valuable theoretical tool to identify dynamics ofdomination perpetrated against human individuals, society in general, and the ecological environment atlarge. Such dynamics include traditional symbolism, social stratification, confinement, the extremes ofprivacy, and ecological devastation, in particular, the domination of plants and animals. These issues willnot be adequately addressed by changes in building, no matter how well intentioned and radical they mayseem. For instance, ecologically friendly buildings, unfortunately, do not carry the capacity to address thevery unfriendliness of the human built environment per se. This is not to oppose such wonderfulinitiatives, given the situation, but to alert to the deficiencies of such initiatives when confronted with thepervasive and devastating context of social and ecological domination shaped by domestication. To explore the positive contributions of domestication and the built environment may fill upmyriads of theses but goes beyond the purpose of this study concerned with understanding domination.Certainly, domesticated humans would find infinite features in domestication that they would understandas enriching earthly life, particularly the modern human mode of life. In fact, human domesticatedscience is devoted to this end. In many ways, we domesticated humans do not know and cannotappreciate other modes of life beside the domesticated one. I do not think we domesticated humans havethe ability, for instance, to chose a nomad life style; if needed, it would remain a choice forced by thelarger ecological environment. A preliminary word regarding ethics, Peter J. Wilson provides perhaps the key conclusion aboutethics in his comparison between nomad and sedentary societies. For him, the change was from ethics inthe Paleolithic to altruism in the Neolithic. He goes further to argue that Neolithic or domesticatedhumans talk about ethics while Paleolithic humans did ethics. The change can be perceived in thetransition from relational ethics to institutional altruism. Among nomads, ethics seems a given, while,with the preoccupation for domesticated relations or institutionalization under the built environment,ethics becomes a topic in the age of human domestication. 49 Biles studies the case of Soul City in North Carolina and reveals the intricate alliances between publicand private organizations managing housing. Roger Biles, ―The Rise and Fall of Soul City: Planning, Politics, andRace in Recent America,‖ Journal Of Planning History (JPH) 4, no. 1 (February 2005): 52-72. 50 Lawson argues that most humans live in social clusters, interpreting life styles that reflect their housingconditions. Julie Lawson, ―Comparing the Causal Mechanisms Underlying Housing Networks Over Time andSpace,‖ in Journal of Housing and the Built Environment (HBE) 16, no. 1 (March 2001): 29-52. 7
  8. 8. For instance, would domesticated humans consider leaving the sick, the lame, and the old to dieby themselves—practices not uncommon among nomads—ethically sound? Would individual ethics takeprecedence over the ethics of the group or vice versa? If yes, for instance, would the freedom of theindividual override the freedom of the group or vice versa? We domesticated humans seek to elucidatesuch questions but end up in eternal debates, often resolved via ethical imposition based on the amount ofaccumulated domesticated authority or supremacy, usually following institutional procedures that obeyparticular traditional and legal measures. Ethical advances among domesticated beings remain focused on addressing the symptoms ofconditioning dynamics, among them obvious and scandalous inadequacies of domestication, but withoutchallenging the very legitimacy of those dynamics, particularly of domestication. The said symptoms andinadequacies are inevitably judged from a domesticated view point by domesticated humans. Thatsituation occurs mainly because human life has evolved to such a degree under domestication thateliminating domestication would imply eliminating the human itself. PROLOGUEIn preparation for the interdisciplinary discussion in this work, this Prologue discusses the broaderscholarly context and reviews the state of current scholarship in social and natural sciences concerninghuman domestication via housing, architecture, or the built environment, in the broad sense. It addressesthe use of the metaphor of domestication for understanding domination. It includes a working definitionof domestication and its argument and a statement regarding the relationship between domination anddomestication, particularly of humans. This study explores a social-anthropological question, the domestication of humans, within acosmological and ecological perspective.51 For that purpose, this section introduces the main disciplinesregarding social anthropology in dialogue in this study, particularly Charles Darwin‘s work.52 Currents in social anthropologyAnthropology refers to the study of humans. Historically, anthropologists started by examiningtraditional non-Western peoples. Analytically, anthropology may be regarded as a holistic andcomparative branch of sociology. Holistically, anthropologists seek to connect the various parts thatmake up a social and cultural whole, rather than specializing on one specific subsystem within the whole. 51 This section adapts materials from: American Sociological Association (2006, January 19) [online],available: [2006, January 19]; Anovasofie [Analyzing and Overcoming theSociological Fragmentation in Europe]: European Virtual Library of Sociology (2004-2006) [online], available: or [2006, January 19]; SearchableDatabase of Anthropological Texts (N.A.) [online], available: [2006, January 19]; andAmerican Anthropological Association (AAA) (1996-2004 copyright) [online], available:[2006, January 19]. 52 Marvin Harris‘s description of competing anthropological approaches seems instructive: Sociobiologyand Biological Reductionism, a research strategy that seeks to explain human social life by means of the theoreticalprinciples of Darwinian and neo-Darwinian evolutionary biology; Dialectical Materialism, often known as Marxists,focus on the importance of infrastructure with a dialectical view of history developed by philosopher GeorgWilhelm Friedrich Hegel, which plays a central role in Marxist theories; Structuralism, in spite of the proponents ofstructuralism declarations of the primacy of the infrastructure, structuralism places more importance on words andideas, and resists scientific method; Structural Marxism, combining aspects of structuralism with aspects ofdialectical and historical materialism, heaps scorn on cultural materialists as ―mechanical,‖ ―vulgar,‖ and ―so-calledMarxists;‖ Psychological and Cognitive Idealism, that the mental, emic (insider view), and personality aspects ofsocio-cultural systems determine the etic (outsider view) and behavior aspects; Eclecticism, ―By picking andchoosing epistemological and theoretical principles to suit the convenience of each puzzle, eclecticism guaranteesthat its solutions will remain unrelated to each other by any coherent set of principles;‖ and Obscurantism, ―aresearch strategy whose aim is to subvert the possibility of achieving a science of human social life.‖ Marvin Harris(2005 copyright), The Realm of MacGoddess [homepage of Nancy G. McClernan] [online], available: [2006, January 15]. 8
  9. 9. Comparatively, anthropology describes the diverse cultures, subcultures, groups and institutions, buildingup a rich databank of human cultural and social forms to compare, contrast, and to bring out specificitiesand social idiosyncrasies. Methodologically, anthropology advocates for a qualitative approach touncover through fieldwork what things, relationships, persons, and activities mean to people, rather thanwhat these phenomena are in themselves. The notion of human domestication emerges in the context of social anthropology, whichdeveloped in different ways. Social Anthropology (SA) developed as a scholarly discipline in the 1900sin Great Britain, influenced by French sociological ethnologie theory. The movement was led by ÉmileDurkheim, father of modern sociology.53 He focused on forms of social integration (solidarity), collectiverepresentations, and ritual. It was also led by Marcel-Israël Mauss, father of modern Frenchanthropology.54 Of particular importance is Mauss‘ Essay Sur le Don (1923-24), translated into Englishas The Gift: Forms and Functions of Exchange in Archaic Societies (1954), a comparative essay on gift-giving and exchange in primitive societies. Social anthropology was inspired by the methodological ideals of fieldwork pioneered byBronislaw Malinowski, spreading from Britain to such countries as Norway, Sweden, and Holland.55Social anthropology is often contrasted to the North American cultural anthropology developed by FranzBoas.56 Cultural Anthropology (CA) is considered less sociologically inclined and more influenced bylinguistics and history.57 Domestication and natural selectionThis study on domination and particularly on human domestication emerges chiefly in the context of andas a critique to the natural selection theory (see Appendix 5: Modern Synthesis and Domestication).Since Charles Darwin‘s On The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or The Preservation ofFavoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859) deeply informs current scientific discussions onevolutionary history (see Appendix 6: Human Evolution), including human emergence and development,this study includes an interpretation of Darwin‘s ideas.58 Darwin put forward a notion of domination 53 French-Jewish sociologist Émile Durkheim (1858–1917). 54 French-Jewish anthropologist and sociologist Marcel-Israël Mauss (1872-1950) founded the Instituted’etnologie at the University of Paris. 55 Polish-Austrian anthropologist Bronislaw Kasper Malinowski (1884-1942). 56 German-Jewish anthropologist Franz Boas (1858-1942). 57 Traditionally, while the anthropological school in the U.S. refers to cultural studies, the anthropologicalschool in the United Kingdom (UK) refers to social studies. The UK school is now known as socio-culturalanthropology. Social scientists frequently refer to Applied Anthropology (practical research), AcademicAnthropology (theoretical research), Cultural Relativism (suspended field work judgment), Cybernetics (informationflow in complex systems), Evolutionism (gradual organization complexity), Neo-evolutionism (multilinearevolution), Scientific Dialectical Materialism (organic society and power accumulation), Neo-Marxism (productionbeyond economy), Functionalism (integrated social whole), Structuralism (complexity of structural meaning),Structural Functionalism (social function and social system), and Postmodernism (deconstruction of knowledge);Peter Metcalf, Anthropology: The Basics (London; New York: Routledge, 2005); Barbara D. Miller, Penny VanEsterik, and John Van Esterik, Cultural Anthropology. 3er Canadian ed. (Toronto: Pearson/Allyn and Bacon, 2007);and Louis Dumont, [Introduction à Deux Théories Danthropologie Sociale. English] An Introduction to TwoTheories of Social Anthropology: Descent Groups and Marriage Alliance, Robert Parkin, trans. and ed. (New York:Berghahn Books, 2006). 58 English naturalist Charles Robert Darwin‘s (1809-1882) On The Origin of Species by Means of NaturalSelection, or The Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life (1859) established evolution by commondescent as the dominant scientific theory of diversification in nature. Charles Darwin, On the Origin of Species byMeans of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of Favoured Races in the Struggle for Life, ed. J. W. Burrow(London: Penguin, 1985); On the Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection, or the Preservation of FavouredRaces in the Struggle for Life (2005, May 23), The Online Literature Library [online], available: [2005, December 18]; TheOrigin of Species (2004 copyright), The Free Library by Farlex [online], available: 9
  10. 10. based on domestication (taming) but camouflaged with naturism. Darwin‘s methodology is deeplyinfluenced by experimentation on taming. His method superposes sociological projections onto ecology. This general introduction refers to some aspects of Darwin‘s theory on natural selection, commondescent, and some general laws, ―taken in the largest sense,‖ acting around us.59 As Darwin summarizes, Growth with Reproduction; Inheritance which is almost implied by reproduction; Variability from the indirect and direct action of the external conditions of life, and from use and disuse; a Ratio of Increase so high as to lead to a Struggle for Life, and as a consequence to Natural Selection, entailing Divergence of Character and the Extinction of less-improved forms… On these principles, I believe, the nature of the affinities of all organic beings may be explained.60 Searching to explain those principles of organic affinity, Darwin traveled extensively to explorenature in exotic regions, including his famous expedition to the Galapagos Islands. However, his methodof experimentation was greatly influenced by his understanding of and familiarity with taming, whichDarwin denominates domestication, following the traditional custom to refer to taming. He observed―variation under domestication‖ and extended it to illustrate natural selection, to explain coadaptation,―the case of the coadaptations of organic beings to each other and to their physical conditions of life,‖ andto make his fundamental critique of Christianity: that the belief ―that each species has been independentlycreated—is erroneous.‖61 He concluded that the best suited or adapted—i.e., the fittest62—dominates andsurvives.63 [2005, December 18]; and Charles Darwin (1809-1882)(2004 copyright), The Free Library by Farlex [online], available: [2005, December 18]. 59 George John Romanes, Darwin and After Darwin: An Exposition of the Darwinian Theory and aDiscussion of Post-Darwinian Questions (London: Longmans Green & Co., 1893); Thomas Henry Huxley,―Obituary of Charles Darwin,‖ Proceedings of the Royal Society (RS) 44 (1888); Daniel C. Dennett, Darwin’sDangerous Idea: Evolution and the Meaning of Life (New York: Simon & Schuster, 1995); Dennis F. Bratchell, TheImpact of Darwinism: Texts and Commentary Illustrating Nineteenth Century Religious, Scientific and LiteraryAttitudes (London: Avebury Publishing, 1981); and A.J. Cain, ―The True Meaning of Darwinian Evolution,‖ inEvolution and Its Influence, Alan Grafen, ed. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1989). 60 The Origin of Species: Chapter IV.-Natural Selection, 61 However, he closes his introduction with both a strong claim and a humble acknowlegement. ―I amconvinced that Natural Selection has been the main but not exclusive means of modification.‖ ―Introduction,‖ TheOrigin of Species, 62 Although Darwin used it, the phrase ―survival of the fittest‖ was originally applied to economics andcoined by English philosopher and liberal political and sociological theorist Herbert Spencer (1820-1903) in hisPrinciples of Biology of 1864. Spencer led classical Social Darwinism. However, some think Spencer applied moreprinciples of ―use and disuse‖ (Lamarkism) than of ―natural selection‖ (Darwinism). Herbert Spencer, ThePrinciples of Biology (London: Williams and Norgate, 1864-1867). 63 A similar approach has been promoted in recent decades in North America. As a critique of that theory,Jared Diamond would argue that, for instance, the dominance of the peoples from the Fertile Crescent in ancienttimes and from the United States in modern times do not occur due to their ―biological superiority,‖ but rather to ―anaccident of biogeography.‖ Jared Diamond, ―The Erosion of Civilization; The Fertil‘s Crescent Fall Holds aMessage for Today‘s Troubled Spots,‖ Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles, 15 June 2003: M 1. Proquest Informationand Learning Company (2006 copyright) [online], available: [2006,January 20]. 10
  11. 11. We can so far take a prophetic glance into futurity as to foretell that it will be the common and widely-spread species, belonging to the larger and dominant groups, which will ultimately prevail and procreate new and dominant species.64 Some studies before Darwin‘s argued that species suit their context over generations.65 ButDarwin saw it with particular intensity through the lenses of domination. His notions of strength,superiority, and fittest-ness refer to projections upon nature elaborated by human subjectivities seeking tostandardize the appreciation of natural processes from a privileged position. John A. Livingston refers toDarwin as an artifact of the ideology of his time.66 Darwin imposed his thought on his view of nature,thought that was shaped by the culture of his time, in general, and by his experimentation on taming, inparticular. Nature clearly transcends the laboratory, which represents a main context for taming, whichconsequently refers to Darwin‘s starting point. Darwin assumed the natural context as a battlefield; ―the struggle for existence‖ was a ―war.‖―Thus, from the war of nature, from famine and death, the most exalted object which we are capable ofconceiving, namely, the production of the higher animals, directly follows.‖67 One difficulty withDarwin‘s notion is the blurredness between his notion of fittest and a notion of ―fiercest.‖ While manyargue for a very pessimistic diagnostic of war, Darwin envisioned how nature‘s war improves ecologicalreality. ―Hence we may look with some confidence to a secure future of equally inappreciable length.And as natural selection works solely by and for the good of each being, all corporeal and mentalendowments will tend to progress towards perfection.‖68 In his own words, ―This principle ofpreservation, I have called, for the sake of brevity, Natural Selection.‖69 It reveals a principle based onfiery domination rather than fitness. Darwin valued adaptability, fitted-ness, and ultimately survival, all of which relate toreproduction. He would value a defective survivor to an ideal extinct. However, he fails to identify animplicit anthropomorphic determinism and favoritism in his approach. He deals poorly with thepervasive and predatory human power and its epicenter among elites. His portrayal of natural adaptationreveals a sort of ―anthropo-elite-centric‖ selection appeal. He clearly struggled with dominant Victoriandescriptions of nature.70 Darwin challenges common Christian theories of divine design, focusing onorigin or genesis, replacing the agent (nature for the divine) and its method (selection for design).71 Darwin crafted the notion of ―natural selection‖ and characterized it to an extreme where thespecies are disavowed of their agency. Seeking to rescue Darwin from this pitfall, Richard Richards 64 The Origin of Species: Chapter IV.-Natural Selection, 65 Darwin‘s theories follow a long standing trend of research. James Hutton (1726-1797), known as thefather of modern geology, spoke of gradual development over aeons of time (uniformitarian theory); EtienneGeoffroy Saint-Hilaire (1772-1844) established the principle of ―unity of composition‖ arguing that species arevarious degenerations of the same type; Erasmus Darwin (1731-1802), grandfather of Charles Darwin, referred toorganisms passing changes to offspring (common descent theory); Dr. W. C. Wells‘s (1813) ―An Account of aWhite female, part of whose skin resembled that of a Negro;‖ Jean-Baptiste Lamarck (1744-1829), first to use theterm biology, thought of acquiring and passing on needed traits (Lamarckism); Robert Edmund Grant (1793-1874)developed others theories of transmutation; and that The Rev. Thomas Robert Malthus (1766-1834) showed thathuman populations increase to exceed resources (Whig Poor Law). ―Chapter XIV.-Recapitulation and Conclusion,‖The Origin of Species, 66 Livingston, Ibid, 76. 67 ―Chapter XIV.-Recapitulation and Conclusion,‖ The Origin of Species, 68 Ibid, 14-1-2. 69 ―Chapter VI.-Natural Selection,‖ The Origin of Species, 70 William Irvine, Apes, Angels and Victorians: The Story of Darwin, Huxley and Evolution (Lanham, MD:University Press of America, 1955). 71 M. Midgley, Evolution as a Religion (London: Methuen, 1985). 11
  12. 12. disassociates causality and immutability: ―the causal efficacy‖ Darwin attributed to natural selection doesnot suggest ―the immutability of species.‖72 Richards aims precisely at correcting Darwin‘s strongimpression in this regard. Instead, Alanna Mitchell prefers to see this agency as transformational; a―Darwinian endeavor of metamorphosis.‖73 In the struggle for survival and reproduction (transcendence), species seem to adapt, vary, andsurvive. Seen from a non-Darwinian angle, species collectively present life conditions. Species incarnatethe conditions of life. Species mutually condition one another. The dichotomy Darwin enforces betweennature and life conditions seems a fallacy. Darwin pictures a nature selecting the fittest species whichexist and live within life conditions. Darwin redesigns nature. ―Selection‖ and ―the fittest‖ correlate. Onthe contrary, argues this study, while species naturally struggle for survival, the fittest neither necessarilynor naturally survive. Sometimes the fiercest, the luckiest, and the weakest survive. But when thesurvivor is not the fittest, which happens often, selection does not correlate. Selection does not explain allnatural survival. The fittest survivor notion seems contextual and subjective. Species represent natural agents.Rather than selection in the abstract, survival seems the species‘ concrete natural agency. As JeffreyRoss-Ibarra, Gabriel Marais, and Brian Charlesworth insist, species adapt; they recombine in order tosurvive.74 Species survive. But some species, notably the human, do not simply survive; they destroyand, worse, enjoy doing it. They seem capable of dominating for domination‘s sake. In this context, thenotion of natural selection disguises and perpetuates domination. Darwin projected his social theories onto his observations of nature, which noticeably reflect hisexperimentation on taming. Selection, as a working metaphor, could make sense from a tamingviewpoint or selection by human agency and under human standards. But such selection misrepresentsnature and rather reflects human artificiality. While humans may value selection (e.g., taming), survivaldoes not necessarily happen directly proportional to adaptability and variation. The notion of selectionemerges by human conception and imposition primarily through taming. Darwin failed to recognize thathe observed nature with a domesticated and domesticating eye. Selection not necessarily reflects natureat large but the development of human behavior in particular. Overemphasizing selection forces Darwinian theories to become selective, oversimplifying therole of random probabilities and of context in natural processes. Darwin eventually foresaw a cease to thestruggle for adaptation. That the struggle between natural selection on the one hand, and the tendency to reversion and variability on the other hand, will in the course of time cease; and that the most abnormally developed organs may be made constant, I can see no reason to doubt.75 Whether Darwin foresaw a total domination of the fittest or not, nevertheless, adaptation,variation, and survival represent perhaps Darwin‘s most influential and best documented ideas of hiscommon descent theory. They have revolutionized the sciences, as Darwin fervently prophesized. 72 Richard A. Richards, ―Darwin and the Inefficacy of Artificial Selection,‖ Studies in History andPhilosophy of Science (SHPS) 28, no. 1 (March 1997): 75-97. 73 Alanna Mitchell, Dancing at the Dead Sea: Tracking the World’s Environmental Hotspots (Toronto: KeyPorter Books, 2004), 18. 74 Ross-Ibarra uses plant cytogenetical literature to explore the implications of the theories ofrecombination and preadaptation. Jeffrey Ross-Ibarra, ―The Evolution of Recombination Under Domestication: ATest of Two Hypotheses,‖ The American Naturalist (AN) 163, no. 1 (January 2004): 105-15. Marais andCharlesworth, at the Institute of Cell, Animal and Population Biology, University of Edinburgh, research on theimpact of recombination on the evolution of genome. Gabriel Marais and Brian Charlesworth, ―Genome Evolution:Recombination Speeds Up Adaptive Evolution,‖ in Current Biology (CB) 13, no. 2 (January 2003): R68-R70. 75 ―Chapter V.-Laws of Variation,‖ The Origin of Species, 12
  13. 13. In the distant future I see open fields for far more important researches. Psychology will be based on a new foundation, that of the necessary acquirement of each mental power and capacity by gradation. Light will be thrown on the origin of man [humans] and his [their] history.76 Darwin‘s influential formulation in natural and social science, particularly regarding the origin ofhumans, indicates that species reproduce (simple and hybridized or mongrelized) and reach reproductiverates that prompt life struggle (facing conditions of their environments). Life struggle occurs under agenerational cumulative dynamic (i.e., natural selection), favoring a clustered variability (i.e., characterdivergence), transmitting traits with growth correlation (change correspondence between embryo or larvaand mature animal)77 to offspring (descendants) via inheritance (non-mutated)78 and methodic(domestication) or unconscious (use and disuse) modification (mutated). Thereby species adapt (higherstate, winning novel characters), become more fit and perfect; or they regress (lesser state, losingancestral characters), become less fit and subsequently extinguish. The final result is thus rendered infinitely complex…79 The several subordinate groups in any class cannot be ranked in a single file, but seem rather to be clustered round points, and these round other points, and so on in almost endless cycles.80 Although Darwin recognized the complexity of survival and referred to two selections—namely,natural and human (taming)—he shows more interest in arguing for selection as natural, neglecting toexplicate their relationship. Darwin failed to identify the primary role of the built environment in theprocess of domestication. Darwin did not explain nature; at best, he addressed natural survival throughexplaining non-human variation under taming and domestication. There is no obvious reason why the principles which have acted so efficiently under domestication should not have acted under nature. In the preservation of favored individuals and races, during the constantly-recurrent Struggle for Existence, we see the most powerful and ever- acting means of selection.81 Darwin starts with taming to explain natural selection. Nevertheless, he finds adaptation,variation, and survival among the major guidelines species follow in their pilgrimage on earth. ButDarwin focused so acutely on non-human organisms that he failed to identify selection against humans 76 One would hardly find references to women in relation to doing science, and particularly physics,including the summary offered by Darwin in his Preface to his On The Origins of Species, however, Margaret C.Jacob and Dorothee Sturkenboon would present another picture when they refer to the Dutch Women‘s Society forNatural Knowledge who met from 1785 to 1887. They refer to an early ―domestication‖ of science, meaningscience at home, however the domestication might actually refer to the dominance of science by men. Margaret C.Jacob and Dorothee Sturkenboon, ―A Women‘s Scientific Society in the West: The Late Eighteenth-CenturyAssimilation of Science,‖ Isis 94, no. 2 (June 2003): 217-52. 77 ―Chapter I.-Variation Under Domestication,‖ The Origins of Species, 78 Darwin clarifies, inheritance ―when beneficial to the individual.‖ ―Chapter V.-Laws of Variation,‖ TheOrigin of Species, Darwin admits that modificationsmay lead both to upgrade or downgrade. 79 ―Chapter I.-Variation Under Domestication,‖ The Origins of Species, 80 ―Chapter IV.-Natural Selection,‖ The Origins of Species, 81 ―Chapter 14: Recapitulation and Conclusion,‖ The Origins of Species (2005, May 23), Online Literature Library [online], available: [2005, December 18]. 13
  14. 14. under domestication and even taming. In any event, with or without selection, natural or human,domestication continues to be a major evolutionary force, implicating the evolutionary impact of humanbeings via the built environment. Unlike the notion of natural selection, the notion of domestication has the potential to betterexplain one of the major forces that has been shaping society and ecology since the emergence of ancienthuman civilizations. To what extend domestication emerges in natural discontinuity, setting in motiondisruptive dynamics regarding the adaptation, variation, and survival of species, particularly as it refers tothe domination of humans by humans, greatly occupies the following section. HUMAN DOMESTICATIONThis study employs the metaphor of domestication to understand humans. It discusses traditionalunderstandings of taming and domestication in the context of evolution. It explores the relation amongfood supply, the process of storing information, and taming and domestication. It submits a revision ofthe notion of domestication based on the influence the built environment imposes on organisms. Itintegrates contributions from different disciplines to extend a notion of domestication from naturalist andecological scholarship to understand the human condition. It explores the influence of domestication onhuman beings or human domestication and calls the human species Homo domesticus. It presents adiscussion of human domestication from diverse angles to differentiate between taming through ideology,technology, or technique, and domestication through the built environment. It then presents an historicalcontext to appreciate the emergence and development of human domestication. It discusses the notion ofhuman domestication adopting an ethnographic comparison between sedentary and nomadic societies.And finally, it presents a formal argument for the notion of human domestication, including thediscussion of some of its dominant elements and some of its cosmological, anthropological, sociological,and ecological implications. It argues that the human race is better understood as Homo domesticus. While transiting through this study, we need to bear in mind that in the literature domestication isconsidered a direct human action over plants and animals. My contention is that domestication is thedirect influence of the built environment and that the traditional definition of domestication refers totaming. This revision of the notion of domestication would appear confusing in this study since in orderto continue engaging the available works it will be necessary to use their language but mindful that heretheir notion of domestication is reconsidered as a notion of taming, which will be explained and indicatedwhile trying to avoid a cumbersome corrective rehearsal. 2.1. AN INTRODUTION TO TAMING AND DOMESTICATION Diverse scholars traditionally consider historical coincidences in the rise of taming anddomestication and of civilization.82 Researchers believe humans were originally unstable scatterednomads. As farming sprang up, civilization emerged, and cities and cultures developed.83 Farming andherding represent perhaps the most significant developments during the late part of the Paleolithic-Holocene and throughout the Neolithic periods. Taming and domestication developed into relationalpractices by humans for improved lifestyles at the expense of diverse organisms and things. Humanscontinue to use tamed and domesticated animals and plants as food stock, work force, field research,social symbols, technological devices, entertainment, companions, decoration, and pets.84 According to 82 Frey presents this kind of approach to domestication and civilization by analyzing the work of theEnglish poet Blake. Northrop Frye, Fearful Symmetry: A Study of William Blake (Princeton: Princeton UniversityPress, 1947). 83 Harvey Weiss, ed., The Origins of Cities in Dry-farming Syria and Mesopotamia in the Third MillenniumB.C. (Guilford, Conn.: Four Quarters Pub. Co., 1986); and Leonard Weisgard, The Beginnings of Cities: Re-creationin Pictures and Text of Mesopotamian Life from Farming to Early City Building (New York: Coward-McCann,[1968]). 84 Pam J. Crabtree, and Kathleen Ryan, eds., Animal Use and Culture Change (Philadelphia: MASCA, TheUniversity Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of Pennsylvania, 1991). 14
  15. 15. scientific accounts, taming and domestication refer to the process of collective alteration that differentorganisms, species or families of organisms, or biological populations endure when controlled by multiplegenerations of humans.85 The essential criterion for domestication is the maintenance by humans of a self-perpetuating breeding population of animals isolated genetically from their wild relatives, with resulting behavioural, and usually also phenotypic, changes in the domestic stock.86 The above definition places most of the emphasis on the human agency exercised to dominateother species including plants, but particularly animals. 2.2. A REVISED DEFINITION OF DOMESTICATION Traditionally, taming and domestication has been differentiated in terms of their reach: tamingreferring to conditioning on individuals or groups and domestication on species. The main reason for thiscriterion was the presumption that taming and domestication were actions of humans over plants andanimals; humans were considered domesticators and not domesticated. It was understood that when thereare no remaining wild individuals of a determined species, when they all were tamed, the species becomesdomesticated and its generations are born and grew up domesticated. It was thought that a speciesreaches that taming point in the context of domestication. In that traditional theoretical context, tamingshows on a small scale what domestication establishes at large scale, where taming could be referred to asmicro while domestication as macro. Scientific communities traditionally define domestication as the process of collective alterationthat species or families of organisms or biological populations endure under the control of multiplegenerations of humans. 85 Unless otherwise referenced, the general introductory survey this section presents adopts materialspublished in: WWW Virtual Library (2005 copyright; 2005, October 21) [online], available: [2006,January 21]; Ashbya Genome Database (2006, January 23), Biozentrum: University of Basel, Switzerland [online],available: [2006, January 23]; International Commission on Stratigraphy (2005, December)[online], available: [2005, December 19]; International Union of Pre- andProtohistoric Sciences (2002, January 23) [online], available:[2005, December 20]; The Online Literature Library (2005, May 23), [online], available: [2005, December 20]; Helicon (2006 copyright), Research Machines plc [online],available: [2006, January 18]; International Council for Archaeozoology (2005,November 15), National Museum of Natural History: Archaeobiology Program [online], available: [2005, December 17]; Zooarchaeology (2004, December 06), The World Wide Web’s Virtual Library for the Archaeology of Animals [online], available: [2005, December 21]; Houghton Mifflin Company (2006 copyright) [online],available: [2006, January 23]; Dictionary of the History of Ideas(2003 copyright), The Gale Group [The University of Virginia Library: The Electronic Text Center] [online],available: [2005, December 19]; Free Online Dictionary by Farlex(2005 copyright), Farlex Inc. [online], available: [2005, December 17];Encyclopaedia Britannica Online (2006 copyright), Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. [online], available from [2006, January 22]; The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (2006 copyright), TheStanford University: The Metaphysics Research Lab [online], available: [2006, January19]; Genetic Engineering (2002-2006 copyright), [G. Ganesh, Dennis, Nathaniel, Cai Peng][online], available: [2006, January 20]; Cambridge Centerfor Behavioral Studies (1997-2006 copyright) [online], available: [2006, January 22]; andInternational Union of Geological Sciences (2005, March 2) [online], available: [2006, January22]. 86 Roy Ellen and Katsuyoshi Fukui, eds., Redefining Nature: Ecology, Culture and Domestication (Oxford:Berg, 1996), 454. 15
  16. 16. The essential criterion for domestication is the maintenance by humans of a self-perpetuating breeding population of animals isolated genetically from their wild relatives, with resulting behavioural, and usually also phenotypic, changes in the domestic stock.87 When researchers from the natural sciences refer to domestication as the process of genetic andbehavioural alteration that a species endures when manipulated by humans in order to produce a breedingpopulation separate from their wild relatives to meet human needs, they place the agency of domesticationon humans. This helpful remains a vague definition of domestication that leans toward defining taming.As complete the above definition may seem it misses perhaps the most foundational etymological featureof domestication, namely, the influence of housing on organisms. When researchers from the socialsciences speak of domestication as the influence housing in small-towns exercises on organisms,including humans, they place the agency of domestication on housing and small towns. John A.Livingston directly associates domestication and housing. ―To domesticate some non-human being,literally, is to bring it into our house.‖88 My contention is that the agency of domestication locates in the human built environment. Oncethe built environment comes into being, whether actually or potentially, it influences organisms on itsown about and beyond the initial intention of the human who built or projected the building enterprise inthe first place. Although the above traditional definitions have been helpful in the process of articulating theawareness of the said conditionings, they can be enhanced to gain an inside regarding the human and itsrelation to the larger ecological environment. The traditional notion of domestication elaborated byresearchers from the natural sciences enhances when incorporating the insight regarding the influence ofhousing in small towns in order to differentiate between taming and domestication. Taming anddomestication reflect and reinforce each other. Both taming and domestication refer to conditioning:taming via scientific, technological, and technical methods of knowledge; where domestication via thebuilt environment. The notion of domestication elaborated by researchers from the social sciences also enhanceswhen acknowledging that the influence of domestication goes beyond housing and small-towns.Domestication moves beyond the relation between life and house, whether inside or outside it.Domestication refers to the condition exercised by the human built environment in the broad sense onorganisms. The built environment seen in the broad sense, includes monuments, bridges, roads, dams,satellites, space stations, etc., where housing functions as epitome of the built environment andarchitecture lies at the heart of the building enterprise. Architecture or housing here refers to the time-spatial physical presence or expectancy of the built environment and the modification of space-time byhumans. Houses, for instance, shape earthly space and time. Houses demark geography and epoch. My preference is to use the term ―housing‖ as a concrete way in the broad sense to refer toshelters or the built environment in general. Architecture perhaps adequately captures this broad sense ofhousing to refer to the key tenets the constructions humans build to protect themselves from the elements.However, since architecture has evolved in many ways far from just housing, often it seems difficult toestablish connections between architecture and housing or sheltering. My frequent use of the term―housing‖ seeks to maintain in perspective the ancient origin of architecture, which is closely related tothe building of shelters or houses. 87 Ellen and Fukui, Ibid, 454. 88 Livingston, Ibid, 15. Livingston, however, moves too quickly to a ―symbolic‖ approach from regardingdomestication in relation to the house in a ―literal‖ sense and treats domestication in terms of ideology anddependence. He states: ―I believe that in spite of our cultural conditioning and domesticated ideologicaldependence, as living beings we still have simultaneous access, if we will it, to all four states of self-consciousness:individual, group, community, planetary. In theory at least, we all retain the capacity for wildness.‖ Ibid, 118. 16
  17. 17. Domestication was formally established and reflected via sedentary living conditions, patterns,and habits. Ruth Tringham89 speaks about humans domesticating plants and animals, ―as well as how thehumans themselves become domesticated through learning to live with each other in confined spaces(architecture).‖ The most important changes in daily life in the Neolithic don‘t really have anything to do with ‗stone‘. The Neolithic is a time when people began to settle down and construct and live in dwellings, which would last not only throughout the year but also for many years, perhaps many generations. This change that archaeologists call ‗sedentism‘ is an important prelude to some other significant changes. Some of us think this is the most important change since it means the domestication of humans.90Tringham‘s helpful approach, however, deserves qualification. ―Sedentism‖ does not correspond todomestication, but to settling. More distinctively, architecture denotes built or framed rather than―confined‖ space. Resembling traditional accounts, Tringham‘s view implies two conditions for humandomestication, namely, human agency by ―learning to live with each other‖ and ―in confined spaces(architecture).‖ But previous to the emergence of built shelters, humans settled and learned to inhabit,with each other, confined spaces—caves—and that did not make them domesticated. Nomadic tribes became domesticated as built shelters emerged, first temporarily (whilecontinuing nomadic lifestyles), then permanently (becoming sedentary). The first human centers ofpopulation were unsettled or transitory nomadic conglomerates in the Palaeolithic. They evolved intolong-lasting settlements in the Neolithic. More distinctively than transiting from unsettled to settledsocieties, in terms of domestication, humans were retrieving from natural environments to inhabit builtenvironments. While domestication emerged among nomads, the condition of buildings was established firmlyamong settled peoples. Nevertheless, judging by the degree of today‘s built environment, domesticationnow conditions sedentary and nomadic peoples alike. The built environment stapled its indelible mark onearth. Domestication is very recent but powerfully threatening. Greatly contributing to mass extinctionand unprecedented suffering via weaponry, pollution and global warming, the city embodies the leadingdomestic intervention on society and ecology. Human life within caves represents a pre-domesticating phase. Dwelling in caves represents thetransiting from inhabiting natural spaces into inhabiting human built and artificial constructions. Initially,humans accommodated themselves to natural habitats, later to caves, which still significantly representnatural habitats. But the built environment shifted human accommodation into ecological transformation.This shift and dynamic transformational discontinuity typically characterizes and differentiates betweennatural and artificial living environments. Artificial environments refer to ―modified‖ natural or wildenvironments. Buildings—the architectural modification of wild environments—marks domestication.The influence of the built environment emerged among nomads but developed and became establishedamong settled peoples. The debate regarding the difference between natural or artificial splits between fixists (settledorder of things) and fuxists (do not settled order of things). Ernest Adams considers that ―allclassifications are to a degree natural and to a degree artificial.‖91 Natural or artificial depends not in thethings in themselves but in the way of conceptualizing about them. Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent and 89 English anthropologist Ruth Tringham (born 1940). 90 Ruth Tringham, Unit Title: Life in the Neolithic 1 - Living in Houses (N.A.) [online], available: [2005, December 18]. 91 Ernest W. Adams, Archaeological Typology and Practical Reality: A Dialectical Approach to ArtifactClassification and Sorting (Cambridge University Press, 2007), 279. 17
  18. 18. William R. Newman contend that ―the notions of nature and art are mutually constructed.‖92 Theyresolve the debate as a matter of degree and argue for the inseparability of natural and artificial. Art and nature are two inseparable partners whose movements continuously shape and reshape the map of those cultures that have inherited the ancient yet modern distinction between techne¯ and physis.93 However partners they may be considered, and acknowledging the dynamic or fuxistcharacteristic of earthly systems, which implicitly avoids a fixist posture, my contention is that naturaland artificial greatly differ on their social and ecological impact. While natural dynamics tend to addressmatters of survival, artificial dynamics tend to go beyond survival and introduce and nurturediscontinuities incarnating matters of domination and predation. For instance, artificial dynamics havedegenerated into the pleasure of infringing suffering. Precisely, to accept such domination dynamics asnatural reflects an extreme predatory artificiality. Beyond the physical dimension of the human built environment, domestication also refers to themetaphysical influence and conditioning on organisms via the very notion and conception of the existenceand potential presence of the human built environment, e.g., destroyed architecture, projectedconstruction. Hence, since humans have endured domestication and since domestication has reached humanityas a ―whole,‖ the human species can be referred to as Homo domesticus. When adopting the notion that domestication refers to the influence of the built environment onorganisms, the theoretical context changes. While domestication and taming differ in their means (tamingvia technique, domestication via the built environment), they represent dimensions of a similarconditioning enterprise. Taming and domestication replicate and reinforce each other. While sometechniques influence only individuals, others condition entire species. In the case of humans, the tamingconditioning effect of ideology influences individuals, groups, and the entire human species, while thedomesticating conditioning influence of the built environment has reached, directly or indirectly, theentire human species. The theoretical context where we can arrive after the above considerations is thatmodern earthly life has for some time and currently continues to evolve under the influence ofdomestication. 2.3. INTRODUCTION TO HUMAN DOMESTICATION Human domestication refers to the influence of the built environment on the human species.Even though Livingston contends that domestication literally means ―to bring it into our house,‖94 herefers to human domestication through ideology: the ―domesticated prosthetic devise‖.95 Wilson arguesthat humans are domesticated in small towns and villages. Whether in or out of the house, in the presenceof abandoned ancient ruins, rural routes, small towns, or mega-cities, my contention is that domesticationrefers to the influence the presence or expectancy of the built environment exercises on organisms, hencewe can speak of human domestication. Domestication establishes no dualism to classify humanity. Jack Goody criticizes Claude Lévi-Strauss96 dichotomy of savage and domesticated.97 He prefers to understand historical changes—e.g., 92 Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent and William R. Newman, eds., The Artificial and the Natural: An EvolvingPolaritys (The Massachusetts Institute Technology Press, 2007), 18. 93 Ibid, 18. 94 Livingston, Ibid, 15. Livingston, however, moves too quickly to a ―symbolic‖ approach from regardingdomestication in relation to the house in a ―literal‖ sense and treats domestication in terms of ideology anddependence. He states: ―I believe that in spite of our cultural conditioning and domesticated ideologicaldependence, as living beings we still have simultaneous access, if we will it, to all four states of self-consciousness:individual, group, community, planetary. In theory at least, we all retain the capacity for wildness.‖ Ibid, 118. 95 Ibid, 11, 56, 57, and 58. 96 French anthropologist Claude Lévi-Strauss (born 1908). 18
  19. 19. from gesture to oral, from oral to writing—as critical and complex conditions rather than dichotomies.Goody acknowledges human domestication. ―If we wish to speak of the ‗savage mind,‘ these were someof the instruments of its domestication…‖98 Since the relation between humans and other organisms is avast and complex enterprise, this study refers to domestication as a metaphor, using it as a linguistic andphilosophical mechanism to theorize about humans. Humans have lived for generations under conditionsof domestication. Norbert Sachser anticipates that mammals will grow up as individuals relating primarily toconspecifics or individuals of the same species.99 Studying domestic and wild guinea pigs fromphysiological, domestication, and social evolution perspectives led him to conclude that the study ofontogeny and behaviour among mammals goes back beyond environment and social experiences throughbirth, and to prenatal, and ancestral conditions. Sachser‘s rules for domesticated group-living mammals,including the human race are: they succeed in reproduction; their perceived degree of welfare and stressrepresent consequences of social interactions marked by natural selection through social evolutionaryprocesses of their wild ancestors; and their behavioural and physiological patterns were brought aboutduring the process of domestication.100 2.4. A HISTORICAL CONTEXT FOR HUMAN DOMESTICATION Homo is the genus that includes modern humans and their close relatives. 101 Lucy102 (the mostancient Homo remains, found in 1974 in Tanzania) dates to about 3 megaannums (Ma) Before Present 97 English social anthropologist Sir John (Jack) Goody (born 1919) disagrees with the binarist or dualistapproach. He aptly speaks of a generalized victim condition under the inaccuracy of ―the ethnocentric binarismenshrined in our own categories, of the crude division of world societies into primitive and advanced, European andnon-European, simple and complex. As general signposts these terms may be permissible. But to build on soslender a base the distinct approaches to the physical universe seems scarcely justified.‖ Jack Goody, TheDomestication of the Savage Mind (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1977), 8. 98 Ibid, 162. 99 Norbert Sachser, ―Of Domestic and Wild Guinea Pigs: Studies in Sociophysiology, Domestication andSocial Evolution,‖ Naturwissenschaften 85, no. 7 (27 July 1998): 307-17. 100 Ibid, 307-17. 101 Unless otherwise referenced, the general introductory survey this section presents adapts materialspublished in: National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI): National Institutes of Health (NIH) (2005September), [online], available: [2005, December 18]; Ashbya GenomeDatabase (AGD) (2006, January 23), Biozentrum: University of Basel, Switzerland [online], available: [2006, January 23]; International Commission on Stratigraphy (ICS) (December 2005)[online], available: [2005, December 19]; International Union of Pre- andProtohistoric Sciences (Congrès international des Sciences préhistoriques et protohistoriques - CISPP) (2002,janvier 23) [online], available: [2005, December 20]; TheOnline Literature Library (2005, May 23), [online], available: [2005,December 20]; Helicon (2006 copyright), Research Machines plc [online], available:[2006, January 18]; International Council for Archaeozoology (ICAZ) (2005, November 15), National Museum ofNatural History (NMNH): Archaeobiology Program [online], available:[2005, December 17]; Zooarchaeology (2004, December 06), WWW The World Wide Web’sVirtual Library for the Archaeology of Animals [online], available: [2005,December 21]; Houghton Mifflin Company (HMCo) (2006 copyright) [online], available: [2006, January 23]; Dictionary of the History of Ideas (DHI) (2003copyright), The Gale Group [The University of Virginia Library: The Electronic Text Center] [online], Available: [2005, December 19]; Free Online Dictionary by Farlex (2005copyright), Farlex Inc. [online], available: [2005, December 17]; EncyclopaediaBritannica Online (2006 copyright), Encyclopaedia Britannica, Inc. [online], available from [2006, January 22]; The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy (SEP) (2006 copyright),The Stanford University: The Metaphysics Research Lab [online], available: [2006,January 19]; Genetic Engineering (2002-2006 copyright), [G. Ganesh, Dennis, Nathaniel, Cai Peng][online], available: [2006, January 20]; Cambridge Center 19
  20. 20. (BP).103 Evidence shows Homo habilis or ―handy man‖ (handy human) existing 2 Ma BP, using primitivestone tools (choppers) in Tanzania.104 By 1.6 Ma BP Homo erectus appeared in Africa and migrated toother continents, primarily to south Asia, and between 0.50 and 0.25 Ma BP Homo erectus evolved intoHomo sapiens. By 150,000 in Africa and Asia and 28,000 years ago in Europe appeared the singlesurviving hominid species, the modern human.105 Humans define themselves in many ways, includingbiologically, socially, and spiritually. Nonetheless humans are still biologically classified as a bipedalprimate of the superfamily of Hominoidea, including the apes (chimpanzees, bonobos, gorillas,orangutans, and gibbons). Modern humans belong to the species Homo sapiens, which from the Latinrefers to ―wise or clever human.‖106 Archaeologists and anthropologists developed the ―Three Age System‖ to classify humanprehistory (before writing history, dated for Egypt to 3500 BCE) into periods named according to therespective tool-making technologies.107 It divides human prehistory into Stone, Bronze, and Iron ages.108The term Stone Age designates the vast pre-metallurgic period whose stone tools survived far morewidely than tools made from other (softer) materials. The period encompasses the first widespread use oftechnology and technique in human evolution and the spread of humanity from the savannas of EastAfrica to the rest of the world. It ends with the development of agriculture, the domestication of certainanimals and the smelting of copper ore to produce metal. The Stone Age was subsequently subdividedinto three periods: Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, and Neolithic, when human domestic settlements appeared. 2.5. CONTRASTING ETHNOGRAPHIES: SEDENTARY VIS-A-VIS NOMADIC A comparison between sedentary and nomad societies enlightens the awareness of humandomestication. Peter J. Wilson explores domesticated sedentary ethnography in contrast to that of nomadsocieties to argue for small town life as domesticated human life. For him, human domestication refers tofor Behavioral Studies (CCBS) (1997-2006 copyright) [online], available: [2006, January22]; World Archaeological Congress (WAC) (2003-4 copyright), Flinders University [online], available: [2006, July 4]; International Union of Pre- and Protohistoric Sciences [Congrèsinternational des Sciences préhistoriques et protohistoriques (CISPP)] (2002, janvier 23), lUniversité de Liègeand[online], available:; and International Union of Geological Sciences (IUGS) (2005,March 2) [online], available: [2006, January 22]. 102 Cremo argues that Lucy was formed from two skeletal remains. He comments that archaeologists andanthropologists in general know about it, and that it shows an example of how many conflictive findings have beensystematically veiled from public domain. Michael Cremo and Forbidden Archaeology Etc., 103 In professional literature, Ma is used to mean megaannum or million years. The abbreviation mya isused in popular science writing and stands for ―million years ago.‖ Also, metrologists use the expression BeforePresent (BP) to actually mean before 1950. 104 Homo habilis probably lived with Paranthropis robustus. While the homos are meat-eating, theParanthropus eats plants and termites. 105 All Homo species except Homo sapiens are extinct. The last surviving relative, Homo neanderthalensis,died out 30,000 years ago, although recent evidence suggests that Homo floresiensis, ―Man of Flores (Flowers),‖remarkable for its small body, small brain, and survival until relatively recent times, lived as recently as 12,000years ago. 106 Peter Gärdenfors, How Homo Became Sapiens: On the Evolution of Thinking (Oxford; New York:Oxford University Press, 2003). 107 John Lubbock, Pre-historic Times: As Illustrated by Ancient Remains and the Manners and Customs ofModern Savages (London; Edinburgh: Williams and Norgate, 1865). 108 Because of its helpful simplicity, this study uses the Three-Age System (developed by the Danishcurator of the National Museum of Denmark C.J. Thomsen, at the instigation of his predecessor Rasmus Nyerup,and to resolve display issues), although acknowledging that archaeological discoveries suggest a more complexprehistory. This general referential system seems increasingly inapplicable. Also, it initially applies to the ―olderworld‖ (Euro-Asian-African). Other systems have been designed for the ―newer world‖ (America). Elaine Dewar,Bones, Discovering the First Americans (Carroll & Graf Publishers, New York, 2002). 20
  21. 21. the influence the small town exercises on humans. To minimize the temptation of pejorative or romanticdescriptions, he interprets nomads from inside, aware of his own positioning in a tribal ethnographicperspective. 2.5.1. Domestication as a cultural development From a natural selection view and since society means the interplay and influence amonghumans, humans are domesticated in society. Domestication is not intrinsic to humans, says Wilson, buta major cultural innovation—i.e., an evolutionary event adopted by humans. Domestication, apparently,did not follow agriculture; rather, ―Archeological evidence clearly indicates that agriculture was not aprerequisite for sedentism and that human domestication occurred independently of plant and animaldomestication.‖109 Human domestication may have inspired animal and plant domestication. Anthropologists and archaeologists show that hominids gradually shifted their living practicesfrom arboreal environments to permanent houses and settlements on the plains. In principle, for Wilson,―domesticated society relies to a great extent on the house as both a dominant cultural symbol and acentral relaying point and context for social organization and activity.‖110 Technically, Wilson refers todomesticated peoples neither as hunter/gatherers nor as modern urban dwellers, but as villagers, peopleliving in hamlets and small towns. Wilson argues: All [civilizations] featured architecture at their centre…. In turn, architecture itself is founded on the discipline and imperatives of geometry…. We are the direct heirs of Neolithic geometry and the arts and sciences that derive from it: tonal music, perspective painting, architecture, mechanics, ballistics, formal gardens, town planning, and theatre, to mention but a few.111 Adopting Wilson‘s analysis, since modern society is rooted in the past, including Wilson‘sdomesticated societies or present human conglomerates living in small towns, modern society relates todomesticated society. 2.5.2. Domestication and human perception According to Wilson, domestication alters humans‘ ability to pay attention. While appreciatingthe role of instincts in human evolution and conduct, he sees human senses as foundational for emotionsand instincts. The study of proto-human primates indicates that their societies were oriented towarddominance (the subject of competition) and subordination (the subject of hierarchy). In primates, hencein humans, intrinsically uncertain (error-prone) visual perception (equivalent of believing and knowing toEnglish speakers) and attention were dominant for adaptation, survival, and well being.112 Social life is grounded in vision. Domestication influences vision, particularly human vision.Chimpanzees master pretence, use revelation and deception, and cultivate appearance. Survival learningand feeding-touching interactions among mammals also represent crucial mother-infant relationshipsrelying on constant visual attention and perception. Vision, however, presents for human society inherentdifficulties and complexity, more as a matter of interpretation (structuring, destructuring, restructuring,inference, induction, and hypothesis) than of direct access. Vision seems highly subjected to uncertainty.Thus, uncertain vision dominates human perception. Domestication further distorts already uncertainhuman perception. 109 Wilson, The Domestication of the Human Species, Ibid, 59. 110 Ibid, 4. 111 Ibid, 152. 112 Chance refers to four kinds of attention relations: Hedonic, relying on rewards and approval in return fordisplay; Agnostic, binding with threats; Centric, surrounding by others and being the focus of their attention;Acentric, dividing attention between the self and the objects of the environment. Michael R. A. Chance and Ray R.Larsen, eds., The Social Structure of Attention (London; New York: Wiley, 1976). 21