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Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Art of Dueling


A couple weeks ago, I discovered a new gem in the online writing world called Inna Tysoe. In her latest article, she tackles the subject of dueling, or "to duel", by way of using a psychological approach as to why the act of dueling actually happens. What's the motivation for each person involved?

Dueling has been around for a very long time and is still prevalent today despite its quite obvious uselessness. If you win a duel, all it really proves is that you are better (or luckier) with the gun or knife than I. And still people duel. Why is that? The three authors who grappled with this subject (and whose answers to this question I shall briefly summarize) all agree that dueling is a form of costly signaling. I have written about Zahavi’s concept of the costly signal elsewhere but to reiterate: according to Zahavi defines “signals as traits whose value to the signaler is that they convey information to those who receive them” (Zahavi, 58).

Read more about the Art of Dueling and Why it Occurs


RS Wing said...

Very interesting read and write. This old ritual was definitely a display of machismo, but it was taken quite seriously considering the outcome is 99% death. I wonder how they practiced.

Carl said...

Interesting..I have several thoughts about it. I think like all human behavior it comes from complexed emotions. :)

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