Meaning in Action: Constructions, Narratives, and Representations

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are far from genetically ? xing what behavioral preferences they may possess. Instead, learning mechanisms offer a ? exible way of attaining locally important cultural knowledge within temporal windows of opportunity as has been convi- ingly shown by research in language and culture attainment. Similar mechanisms are likely to exist for other social capacities, such as mate preferences, for example. It is this role of our biological inheritance that social science must appreciate in order to furnish a more complete understanding of human behavior. Within the natural range of variation of capacities and armed with biologically conditioned learning mechanisms we live out lives of meaning - in which we hold some things to be real, rational, valuable or morally right, and others not. It is this world of meaning in which we ? nd love and hate, struggles for justice, power, and money, and the dramas that lend to life both its depth and passion.