The Significance of the Social Group
Man is a social being who requires the support and companionship of others throughout life. In addition to learning, social cooperation has played an essential part in man’s survival as a species, just as it has in the survival of sub-human primates. Konrad Lorenz1pointed out, men are neither fleet of foot nor equipped by nature with a tough hide, powerful tusks, claws, or other natural weapons. In order to protect themselves from more powerful species and in order to succeed in hunting large animals, primitive men had to learn cooperation; their survival depended upon it. Modern man has moved a long way from the social condition of the hunter-gatherer, but his need for social interaction and positive ties with others has persisted.