ERIC Number: EJ907508
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2010-Dec
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 8
Trade-Offs and Individual Differences in Evolved Traits
Winegard, Benjamin; Bailey, Drew H.; Oxford, Jonathan; Geary, David C.
American Psychologist, v65 n9 p928-929 Dec 2010
Comments on Evolutionary psychology: Controversies, questions, prospects, and limitations by Confer et al. We applaud Confer et al.'s (February-March 2010) clarifications of the many misconceptions surrounding the use of evolutionary analyses in psychology. As they noted, such misunderstandings are common and result in a curious tendency of some of our colleagues to criticize evolutionary psychology without a firm understanding of evolution itself. Confer et al. also did an admirable job acknowledging current unresolved issues among evolutionary psychologists (e.g., the relative importance of group selection on humans). The above said, we disagree with their view that a current limitation of evolutionary psychology is its inability to explain phenomena "that appear to reduce an individual's reproductive success, and cannot be explained by mismatches with, or hijacking of, our psychological mechanisms by modern-day novel inputs" (Confer et al., 2010, p. 122). Mismatches between modern environments and environments of evolutionary adaptedness are only one set of explanations for seemingly maladaptive traits (Nesse, 2005). Another set involves evolutionary trade-offs.
Descriptors: Evolution, Psychologists, Psychology, Misconceptions, Individual Differences, Comparative Analysis, Hypothesis Testing, Models, Homosexuality, Birth, Correlation
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
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