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Chapter 2

Chapter 2 Evolutionary Psychology.docx

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PSYC 3420
Irwin Silverman

Chapter 2 Evolutionary Psychology Adaptive function-whether men can sense ovulation or due to womens sending of signals Origins of human nature: o Three theories of the origins of complex adaptive mechanism: Feet set to natural selection; callous producing Successful predisposition to shelter from friction We carry the adaptive mechanism that led to our ancestors success 1. Creationism/ intelligent design: Supreme deity created it all Cannot be tested, creationism hasnt guided researchers to new discoveries Creationism is matter of belief not science; cant be proven false 2. Seeding theory: Life originated via meteors and planted seeds of life here No solid evidence of this taking place, pushes causal explanations for life back in time; what led to the origins of those intelligent beings 3. Evolution by natural selection: Differential reproduction due to inherited differences It explains facts, leads to new predictions, provides guidance to important domains of scientific inquiry o Three products of evolution: Adaptations, by products, and random effects 1.Adaptations- inherited and reliably developing characteristics which came to exist through natural selection b.c they helped solve problems of survival or reproduction better than alternative designs existing in the population during the period if their evolution-umbilical cord Must have genes for that adaptation Those genes are required for the pass-on-genetic basis Human eye has hundreds of genes, past environments selected the genes we have today; enviornments develop this and activate the adaptation once theyve developed Page 1 of 12 Must develop reliably among species members in all normal enviornments- must emerge at appropriate time Exceptions would be one that are in one sex or one subset of population- most though are species-typical Mustnt appear at birth but, fashioned by selection sieve Recurs every generation so that each new generation is a bit different than its parent The functions of an adaptation refers to the problem it evolved to solve- how it helps survival or reproduction Special design confirms its adaptation; i.e. design features contribute in precise manner to solve particular adaptive problem o I.e. efficiency, precision, reliability Each adaptation has its own period of evolution A mutation/copying error in a piece of DNA occurs in single individual Although most hinder survival or reproduction, some end up helping by chance If its advantageous, its passed down in great numbers In next generation, more individuals possess the characteristic that was initially a mutation in a single person Over many gens, mutation will be on each Environment of evolutionary adaptedness refers to statistical composite of selection pressures that occurred during an adaptations period of evolution responsible for producing the adaptation I.e. the selection forces or problems that caused the shaping it over deep evolutionary time Period of evolution- refers to time span during which it was constructed, piece by piece until the universal design was seen 2. By-products-characteristics that do not solve adaptive problems and do not have functional design; they are carried along with characteristics that do have functional design b.c. the happen to be coupled with those adaptation; belly button Page 2 of 12 If it doesnt help survival or reproduction its a by product of another adaptation which did serve a purpose 3. Noise- random effects produced by forces such as mutation, environments, chance effects, shape of one belly button Produced by forces such as mutation, environment or accidents Independent of adaptations fully Evolutionary Psyc differed in size of the 3, some see language as adaptation. Or by-product Adaptations are the primary product of evolution by selection- agreed by most Core of all animals and natures is adaptations- some are sense organs some help us move through the environment such as posture, leg bones, big toes Evolutionary psychologists tend to focus on one special subclass of adaptations that compromise human nature- psychological adaptations o Levels of evolutionary analysis in evolutionary psychology: Adaptive problems and solutions the hypothesis Diff levels of
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