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Lecture 8

PSYC 3100 Lecture Notes - Lecture 8: Edvard Westermarck, Cousin Marriage, Kibbutz

Course Code
PSYC 3100
Pat Barclay

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Tuesday, October 2nd, 2018
Evolutionary Psychology
Kinship Detection- Lecture 8
Mechanisms on how we integrate cues to learn who kin are
Potential proximate mechanisms: aversion and/or complete sexual non-
attraction, genuine their concern for well-being
Cues of kinship: Situational predictors
Westermarck Hypothesis
Edward Westermarck
o Why is that that people avid incest? Why don’t people mate with their
o People just aren’t sexually attracted to who they grow up with
Westermarck hypothesis
o How important are taboos in dealing with incest? Two main reasons
why taboos aren’t the reason for incest
There are some cultures with some specific taboos about
mating with siblings
And without these taboos some cultures still manage
not mating with siblings
Which cousins are you allowed to marry?
There are some societies that do condone marriage
between cousins
Even within the last 200 years
o Non-humans
Not-humans don’t have social norms that say you can’t have
sex with your siblings and they still don’t mate with their
siblings anyways
Rat pups that grow up together don’t mate even when they
grow up together
We need to test this Westermarck hypothesis
1. If two people are raised together in a sibling like relationship their
sexual attraction will be lower or prevented
Take unrelated people and raise them as siblings and see if they
are sexually attracted to each other
Prediction averse to mating with each other
To test lower rates of fertility
To test more divorce and affairs
2. If two siblings are raised apart, then they might be sexually attracted
to each other
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