I therefore propose an alternative scenario:
the mother–child paradigm at the time of postnatal brain growth. The two facts that are missing in Tomasello’s work are mentioned here.
1. There is now a proposal for the situation in which the first step was taken: Postnatal brain growth led to the helpless human newborn, which was dependent on cooperation and intentional communication.
The situation was inevitable because it was predetermined by biological evolution, and it was permanent and not unique or accidental because all individuals went through this childlike stage of development. The situation therefore required some form of an evolutionary adjustment.
2. There is now a proposal for the individual who took first step. This was the newborn’s mother, who could only ensure the survival of the child through cooperative actions.
The individual’s situation was inevitable because it was pre-determined by biological evolution, and it was permanent and not unique or accidental because all mothers found themselves to be in the same situation. The mothers or social groups that adapted to the situation had an evolutionary advantage.
Another argument I can make for my proposal concerns the economic facts that Tomasello introduces into his hypothesis by presenting common activities oriented towards economic benefit as a cause of evolutionary change.
However, selection on the basis of Darwin’s survival of the fittest principle contradicts the primacy of the economics in evolution. I think Robin Dunbar’s hypothesis of the social brain is more plausible, namely that social circumstances are crucial for evolution.