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Status Hierarchy

Status hierarchy is the ordering of individuals in a social group, whereby some have more power, influence, resources, or prestige than others. These structures are inherently asymmetric, characterized by unequal roles, divisions of labor, uneven distributions of resources, asymmetric patterns of affiliation, and disproportionate influence. Status hierarchies are a pervasive feature of both human and nonhuman social organizations. They are found in human cultures around the globe and have been documented in a variety of species, including humans and ants, bees, fish, birds, dogs, monkeys, and apes. Status hierarchies have thus been assumed to have an evolutionary basis, benefiting individuals in a group by enabling them to form cooperative alliances and coalitions that help with accessing limited resources, achieving reproductive success, and ultimately boosting survival. ...

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