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Chapter 2

Chapter 2: Evolution and Human Nature

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Marc A Fournier

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Sanchika K 012112 Personality Chapter 2 Evolution and Human Nature y The study of person must begin with human nature y French philosopher JeanJacques Rousseau and poets shelly and Keats offered a more optimistic view describing human nature as fundamentally innocent and good y At birth people are ready to be shaped into any form that their environment can produce y Like allliving organisms human beings have evolved to survive and reproduce y Human adaptation have indeed promoted survival and reproduction y Evolution and human nature theprovide the most fundamental context for understanding human individuality y No matter how different we all are from each other what we all have in common is that we are the products of human evolutionOn Human Nature Our Evolution Heritage Principles of Evolution y All animals and plants produce similar versions of themselves on one way or the another making for the continuity of life form one generation to another y Individual organisms are the products of a long chain of evolutionary events whereby replication systems essentially compete for limited resources with some systems providing more successful in the long run than others o The more successful systems are those that produce more viable copes of themselves for the next generation y As environment changes designs of organisms change o Not in direct response to the change but some designs will be more successful in promoting replication than others y Darwins statement o All existing living forms have evolved over time in response to their interactions with environment y Facing limited environmental resources for survival and replication organisms compete with each other and ultimately the fittest design wins y The key to evolution is natural selection o A process whereby nature gradually selects those characteristics of organisms that promote survival and reproductive success o Those organisms the possessing the advantageous characteristics should live longer and produce more offspring that those not possessing the characteristic y Nature selects and causes to persist the most adaptive characteristics in a species y Today we know that genes are responsible for the inheritance of characteristics o Genes are segments of chromosomes found in every cell in the bod and are composed of DNA o Through sexual reproduction these genes are passed down o But in transmission of genes strange things happen
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