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Chapter 12

Chapter 12 - Humans, Human Brains, and Evolution

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Ted Petit

Chapter 12Humans Human Brains and EvolutionModule 121 Evolution of HumansCharles Darwin published On the Origin of Species and fundamentally changed our understanding of biologywhich attempts to apply theLevel of acceptance has yet not been achieved for evolutionary psychologyprinciples of adaptation and selection to human behaviourWhere We Are Going This module will discuss the development of evolutionary theory and the evolution of hominid brains This module will also discuss the inferences that we are entitled to make and those that we are not on the basis of the evolution of human species The second module will discuss how the principles of evolution can be used to understand brain function and behaviourEvolutionary TheoryThe discovery of generally credited to Charles Darwin and Alfred Russel Wallace who on July 1 1858 presented the theory of evolution to Linnean Society of London Darwin sailed on Beagle in December 1831 and went to Galapagos lasted 5 years and he was interested how species emerged and how georgraphic isolation on islands reduced such variety of features in what were same speciesWallace was in Amazon River and Indonesia for years and was intrigued with relationship bw geography and effects on specific characteristics of speciesOn the Tendency of Varieties to Depart Indefinitely form the Original TypeDarwin and Wallace had similar ideas 1 The classification of organisms based on structure by Carolus Linnaeus He observed that there were commonalities in structure among related speciesnot through to support principle of evolution 2Work by Lyell and Smith supported the notion that the earth was far older than previously though They studied fossils and saw some species barely changed while others were extinct when changes occurred it was due to changes to strata of the earth Lyells work suggested idea that processes that shaped the earth were still in effect 3Thomas Malthus wrote about effects of poverty on the population during industrial revolutiongood supplies affect populationpopulations grow exponentially until they surpass their food supply which leads to struggle for existenceHistorical Theory of Evolution 1 Variation2 Inheritance3 Differential ReproductionCan be passed form 1 generation to next theses individual differences in morphology result in variation in success in environmenty Darwin suggested that mechanism underlying changes is natural selectionrequires all individual are unique tand that characteristics gives an animal a reproductive advantage will result in magnification of these traits in population When a trait results in reproductive advantage and is selected for it is calledadaptationy Some survivalist account for evolution cant explain all physical and behavioural traits that influence genes successsexual selectionit is competition among individuals for reproduction that determine a genes fate 1 Intersexual selection 1 sex chooses a mate form among members of the other sex on the basis of specific traits men choose things such as attractiveness or youth
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