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PSYC 3100
Hank Davis

PSYC 3100 – Week 9 Lecture 15 – November 5 Paper info - Pick a specific topic (not just mating behaviour) with lots of previous literature from point of view of regular psychology o How does evolutionary psychology bring something new to this? - At least 1 external reference (1 is fine) - 1000 words! Chapter 10 (cont’d) - Health from Darwinian point of view o How well are we adapted to the current environment? o 3 or 4 best-selling drugs  Cholesterol drugs (13 billion dollars a year)  Our diets suck  We didn’t evolve for sweet and fatty food; we evolved for scare food  Ulcer drugs (6 billion dollars a year)  We’re fucking stressed out!  Depression drugs (4-5 billion dollars a year)  Everything happens to humans   Allergies (3 billion for prescription, 5 billion for non-prescription)  Don’t seem to be adjusted to the environment - Infectious Diseases (Pathogens) o Infectious diseases (pathogens) are a major source of human suffering and death  Even in Pleistocene o If you examine opposition (organisms), you learn a lot about natural selection  How they oppose us, their life cycle, how their adaptations help them o Only try to attack body when there are a lot of them (attack in mass) - Darwinian Medicine o We often make it easier for pathogens to fuck us o Doesn’t see most symptoms as annoyances like you do  Eg. While fever feels awful, it kills bacteria o It makes no sense for a pathogen to kill the host, it just wants to make you sick and transmit o Killing a host without transmitting is an evolutionary dead end  Rhinovirus (cause colds) – Direct transmission  Produce conditions that ensure transmission from one host to another o Reproduce in nasal passage, cause sneezing, then go to another host o If you are able to go to work, you infect more people  Malaria – Vector transmission  Protozoa invades you, multiplies in red blood cells  Mosquito (vector) transmits the virus to others  In general, directly-transmitted diseases are mild, while vector-transmitted are severe  Cold/flu < Malaria, Bubonic Plague - Paul Ewald: Vector-borne diseases o Severity of pathogen is influenced by method of transmission - Main cause of death in humans: Diarrhea o Dysentery, etc. o Causes dehydration o Fastest way out of the host’s body if bacteria is water-borne o Legionnaires  Bacteria got into air conditioning, spread to everyone (normally isn’t dangerous) o Toxic Shock Syndrome  Bacteria on tampons goes into vagaygay  Bacteria normally isn’t lethal, found in women’s bodies  If it gets in the vagaygay (where it usually wouldn’t get), it can actually do stuff - HIV/AIDS o First thing HIV does is destroys the cells that could have destroyed it  Eg. Seize control of the media when invading a country - Red Queen Effect o Organisms don’t hold still genetically o Host and parasites constantly changing in order to stay where they are o Just to break even you have to be running  Competitors are running too o Eg. Awesome guy from minor league does worse in majors once pitchers adjust to him, so he has to adjust to the pitchers - The environment of every organism contains other organisms o Other organisms make environment unpredictable (they, too, evolve) Lecture 16 – November 7 What Causes Abnormal Behaviour - Whether you think it’s demons or viruses, you don’t have control over it o Lose responsibility (“I’m crazy, but it’s not my fault”) o External and internal causes are used as excuse (Devil = external, heredity = internal) o With extreme cases, few people excuse others for these reasons (rape, drunk driving) - “Normal” is a strictly statistical term - “Mental Illness” brings about the medical model o Less likely to see it as a personal choice - People are more critical of those who are very different, but not in the way they’re different o If someone’s fat, people see other traits as worse, but avoid the whole “fat” thing - Evolutionary psych offers novel ways to look at abnormal behaviour o Things we call weird or abnormal aren’t disorders; they’re adaptive defenses  Similar to fever and pain (feel crappy, serve a purpose)  Anxiety could be seen as an increase of vigilance (good thing in Pleistocene) o Abnormal behaviour represents side-effects of genes that do hold fitness benefits  Piggy-backing  While phenotype is selected for, genot
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