Wealth transmission and inequality among hunter-gatherers

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Publication Type Journal Article
School or College College of Social & Behavioral Science
Department Anthropology
Creator Wiessner, Pauline W.
Other Author Smith, Eric Alden; Hill, Kim; Marlowe, Frank W.; Nolin, David; Gurven, Michael; Bowles, Samuel; Mulder, Monique Borgerhoff; Hertz, Tom; Bell, Adrian
Title Wealth transmission and inequality among hunter-gatherers
Date 2010-02
Description We report quantitative estimates of intergenerational transmission and population-wide inequality for wealth measures in a set of hunter-gatherer populations. Wealth is defined broadly as factors that contribute to individual or household well-being, ranging from embodied forms, such as weight and hunting success, to material forms, such as household goods, as well as relational wealth in exchange partners. Intergenerational wealth transmission is low to moderate in these populations but is still expected to have measurable influence on an individual's life chances. Wealth inequality (measured with Gini coefficients) is moderate for most wealth types, matching what qualitative ethnographic research has generally indicated (if not the stereotype of hunter-gatherers as extreme egalitarians). We discuss some plausible mechanisms for these patterns and suggest ways in which future research could resolve questions about the role of wealth in hunter-gatherer social and economic life.
Type Text
Publisher University of Chicago Press - Journals
Journal Title Current Anthropology
Volume 51
Issue 1
First Page 19
Last Page 34
DOI 10.1086/648530
citatation_issn 0011-3204
Language eng
Bibliographic Citation Smith, E. A., Hill, K., Marlowe, F. W., Nolin, D., Wiessner, P., Gurven, M., Bowles, S., Mulder, M. B., Hertz, T., & Bell, A. (2010). Wealth transmission and inequality among hunter-gatherers. Current Anthropology, 51(1), 19-34. February.
Rights Management (c) University of Chicago Press http://www.journals.uchicago.edu/; DOI: 10.1086/648530
Format Medium application/pdf
Format Extent 338, 120 bytes
Identifier ir-main,11764
ARK ark:/87278/s64j0z8f
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ID 703046
Reference URL https://collections.lib.utah.edu/ark:/87278/s64j0z8f