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  1. Comparative phylogenetic analyses uncover the ancient roots of Indo-European folktalesDa Silva, Sara Graça - Royal Society open science, 2016 - 2 Hypotheses

    The authors compare language phylogenies and spatial distributions with folktale frequencies of Indo-European peoples in order to reconstruct their cultural transmission. A stronger association is found between folktale frequency and language phylogeny than has been proposed in earlier literature studies, indicating that vertical transmission is more influential on folktale distribution than horizontal transmission through spatial proximity. Finally, the frequencies of certain folktales appear to trace the ancestral divergences of Indo-European languages to a much deeper level than previously though, suggesting that folktales are representative of broader features of culture, rather than recent literary inventions.

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  2. Cultural complexity and demography: The case of folktakesAcerbi, Alberto - Evolution and Human Behavior, 2017 - 3 Hypotheses

    Acerbi, Kendal, and Tehrani examine the relationship between population size and cultural complexity as measured by a non-technological cultural domain: folktales. Three measures of complexity for folktales are analyzed, 1) number of tale types, 2) number of narrative motifs, and 3) number of traits in variants of two international folktales. Findings suggest that the relationship between cultural complexity and population may depend on the domain, as different domains vary in cultural maintenance and transmission.

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