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Osaka: National Museum of Ethnology, 1998

By most accounts our field consists of at least two major subfields—the evolutionary study of religion and the cognitive science of religion. For at least a decade, numerous projects, conferences, books, and academic programs have been marked by successful collaborations between evolutionary and cognitive scholars of religion. This journal, of course, is also an example of the productive conjoining of these subfields. Nevertheless, it is fair to say that the evolutionary study of religion and the cognitive science of religion have not always been happy bedfellows. The evolutionary-cognitive division within the biocultural study of religion is reflective of the wider division that exists within the evolutionary study of human behavior in general. Historically, the evolutionary study of human behavior consisted of three main approaches: human behavioral ecology, evolutionary psychology, and dual-inheritance theory, more commonly referred to today as gene-culture coevolutionary theory. These approaches are still alive and well, but their boundaries have become increasingly blurred, and many younger evolutionary scholars no longer feel the territorial tensions of their mentors and are seeking integration across these fields.