Lienard, P., & Boyer, P. (2006). Whence collective rituals: A cultural selection model of ritualized behavior. American Anthropologist, 108, 814-824. 

What is ritualized behavior and how does it differ from ritual?

What is cultural selection and what important implication does it hold for recurrent cultural practices?

 Describe the Turkana ariwo ritual. What are the “obvious” features of it that need explanation?

On p. 817, the authors state: “…anthropological theories often emphasize processes (the transmission of norms or of shared cultural symbolism, or a demonstration of social commitment, etc.) that could and do occur also outside ritualized behavior; these, therefore do not explain the specific features of rigidity, scriptedness, etc.”  Why do I (see Rossano, in press) disagree with this?

 What is the Fiske hypothesis and function does it see for collective social rituals?

What do the authors mean by a hazard precaution system?

What is the relationship between ritualized behavior and working memory? What relevance might this have for performance under stress such as athletic performance?

What are the features of collective rituals that may trigger the hazard precaution system and how are do rituals seem to be an effective response to danger?

 Distinguish between routine behaviors and ritualized behaviors.