The meaning of evolutionary psychology: Evolutionary approach to psychology helps us explain phenomena at a deer level of understanding and provide logical tools that help us develop new theories or deduce new hypothesis.
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Evolutionary psychology proves to be a valuable means of discovering new truths about how the human mind works
The meaning of gene’s eye view:
Gene’s eye view of life refers to an evolutionary, psychological theory proposed by biologist Richard Dawkins. The theory sees living things as mere avenues/vehicles for the replication of the genetic materials (Dawkins, 1976).
Altruism: the action of favoring other individuals at the expense of the altruist (Wyschogrod, 1990).
An explanation of how gene’s eye view helps us to understand the evolutionary origins of human altruism.
- An explanation of how gene’s eye view helps people predict unique circumstances under which people’s altruistic behaviors vary.
Evolutionary Psychology “is an approach to psychology in which knowledge and principles from evolutionary biology become useful in research on the structure of the human mind” (Cosmides &Tooby, 1997). Thus, research in evolutionary Biology aims at discovering and understanding the human mind (James, 1890). Evolutionary approach to psychology helps us explain phenomena at a deep level of understanding. It provides logical tools that help us develop new theories or deduce new hypothesis. Evolutionary psychology proves to be a valuable means of discovering new truths about how the human mind works. Neuberg, Kenrick and Schaller (2010) argue that evolutionary psychology forms metatheoritical assumptions that govern how scientists approach conceptual and empirical inquiry into psychological phenomena. Evolutionary, psychological theories attempt to identify human psychological traits that stem from evolutionary adaptations. Gene’s eye view of life refers to an evolutionary, psychological theory proposed by Richard Dawkins. The theory sees living things as mere avenues/vehicles for the replication of the genetic materials (Dawkins, 1976). This theory can be used to explain the evolutionary origin and future prospects of human altruism; the action of favoring other individuals at the expense of the altruist (Wyschogrod, 1990). Gene’s eye view presents biological and psychological processes not from the perspective of individuals (or groups of people), but instead, from the perspective of the gene.
When trying to compare goal or objective from the perspective of a person with the perspective of the gene, the theory of gene’s eye view becomes visible from an evolutionary perspective. Considering a person’s perspective, a set of varied responses becomes eminent. Such responses include motives, desires and aspirations. These answers provide us with information about how human psychology tends to be expressed or experienced but does not tell us the origin of these psychological experiences. If a gene would express its views then the answer would be exceptionally straightforward, to make copies of myself. This does not inform us about human psychology until when another step occurs. The ability of genes to make themselves appears to be an evolutionary adaptation (Neurberg et al 2010). Therefore, genes work collectively to construct vehicles that in turn assist the same genes replicate themselves. Organisms form ideal vehicles accomplishes this mission. People’s bodies including body systems must be constructed and designed according to a unique coded protocol in their genes. People come about as a result of the designed work of genes forming the ideal vehicles for the replication of the same genes. Consequently, everything that constitutes peoples psychology like perceptual organs, cognitive processes, emotional reactions and behavioral tendencies including altruism are at a precise level built to help people’s genes make copies of themselves. However, evolution does not design perfect things. On the contrary, evolution works with what it possesses. Therefore, variability cannot be ruled out (Dawkins, 1976).
It should be noted that just because people act as the replication vehicles for genes, everyone cannot serve that function well. Sometimes, well designed things end up doing unusual things. Such variability can be best emphasized using human beings. Humans have complex nervous systems that exert conscious control over their behaviors. People end up doing things that have no evolutionary function whatsoever. Consequently, variability in human altruism can occur when this factor prevails. Thus, people’s altruistic behaviors vary depending on the prevailing circumstances.
Cosmides. L., and Tooby, J. (1997). Evolutionary Psychology: A Primer.
Dawkins. R. (1976). The Selfish Gene. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
James. W. (1890). The Principles of Psychology. New York: H. Holt and Company.
Neurberg. L., Kenrick., D., and Schaller, M. Eds. (2010). Evolutionary Social Psychology. California: Psychology Press.
Wyschogrod. E. (1990). Saints and Post Modernism: Revisioning MoralPhylosophy. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.