Fitting Linear Mixed-Effects Models Usinglme4 Academic Article uri icon

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abstract

  • The English and French Revolutions represent a turning point in history, marking the beginning of the modern rise of democracy. Recent advances in cultural evolution have put forward the idea that the early modern revolutions may be the product of a long-term psychological shift, from hierarchical and dominance-based interactions to democratic and trust-based relationships. In this study, we tested this hypothesis by analyzing theater plays during the early modern period in England and France. We found an increase in cooperation-related words over time relative to dominance-related words in both countries. Furthermore, we found that the accelerated rise of cooperation-related words preceded both the English Civil War (1642) and the French Revolution (1789). Finally, we found that rising per capita gross domestic product (GDPpc) generally led to an increase in cooperation-related words. These results highlight the likely role of long-term psychological and economic changes in explaining the rise of early modern democracies.

publication date

  • November 17, 2020