Status and Hierarchy in Nonhuman Primate Societies

  • Ted D. Wade
Part of the Perspectives in Ethology book series (PEIE, volume 3)


In recent years, two authors (Gartlan, 1968; Rowell, 1974) have examined and found wanting the application of concepts of social dominance to the behavior of, primarily, nonhuman primates. These criticisms, I believe, fulfill the purpose of ridding us of an outmoded unitary concept, but they also suffer from a degree of unclarity and excessive zeal, brushing aside many well-established, puzzling, and interesting findings. While preparing a reply to these criticisms, I found two ideas to be of underlying importance. One of these is that discussions of social dominance must guard against muddling of conceptual levels. The other is that certain time-honored approaches to the study of dominance attempt to dispense with variability when that variability is itself likely to be our clue to any further understanding. These and other, minor, novelties I hope will make this paper more than just a reply to a critique.


Rhesus Monkey Status Relationship Dominance Rank Social Dominance Agonistic Behavior 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ted D. Wade
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of PsychiatryUniversity of Colorado Medical CenterDenverUSA

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