1753 WordsApr 16, 20138 Pages
Outline the Processes Involved in Evolution and Discuss how Evolutionary Psychologists have Contributed to our Understanding of Altruism as an Adaptive Behaviour The book of Genesis states that God created life in an array of fixed species and it was not until the 19th Century, that paleontological discoveries started to cast doubt on creationism and Charles Darwin published his theory of evolution in On the Origin of the Species (Clegg, 2007, p.120). The two processes that are involved in evolution and the fundamental connections between the evolutionary process and behaviour, in particular that of altruism and whether it can be seen as an adaptive behaviour are considered here. Evolution…show more content…
A theory of mind allows for other forms of altruism, reciprocal altruism, in contrast to kin selection (Clegg, 2007) is when the benefit is conveyed on another whom is not a relative and with no guarantee of anything in return. It is a gamble, the altruist must have a theory of mind in order to possess a level of trust that the benefit will be reciprocated and so is therefore a more human trait. This has been studied and observed by evolutionary psychologists using The Prisoner’s Dilemma Game (Clegg, 2007 pg. 147), the most common method used for studying altruism. Similarly with indirect reciprocity, the altruist is not guaranteed a benefit but bases his gesture on the possibility of a gain not from the person who the altruistic act was bestowed upon but from another, such as the wider community, for example, to boost one’s reputation (Clegg, 2007). McAndrew and Farrelly et al used empirical evidence to suggest that one’s reputation has a direct correlation with how attractive they are perceived to be and so therefore could have an influence on reproductive success (as cited in Clegg, 2007). Nedelou and Michod discovered a genetic element for altruism (as cited in Clegg, 2007) and as it has been demonstrated to be universal, it is probable that altruism is an adaptive behaviour. Darwin’s contribution to evolutionary psychology, his comparative method and

More about Tma02

Open Document