Ethan Watters excellent long piece in Pacific Standard is here. The basic notion: our cultural mores result from different behavioral solutions to societal stress from infectious disease. The author of this idea is University of New Mexico’s Randy Thornhill who is an evolutionary biologist. Thornhill has a new book coming out soon: The Parasite-stress Theory of Values and Sociality: Infectious Disease, History and Human Values Worldwide New York, NY: Springer. It looks like it’ll be a good read.