Evolutionary Explanations of Aggression

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  • Evolutionary Explanations of Aggression
    • Explanations of Human Aggression
      • Infidelity/Jelousy
        • Sexual Coercian - forced sexual intercourses increases chances of fathering the child.
          • +Goetz and Shackleford found that men who raped partners suspected infidelity and woman who had been raped by partners were more likely to have been unfaithful
        • Mate retention - keeping control over mate assures no infidelity and no chance of cuckoldry
          • +Debash and Debash found that woman who had been abused cited the main reason to be jealousy
        • Eliminate the rival - killing rivals prevents opportunities of infidelity and cuckoldry
          • +Daily and Wilson found in a study of 8 love triangle murder cases, 92% of murders were man vs man
            • Demonstrates how eliminating the rival is adaptive for men as they have risk of cuckoldry
        • Deterministic - could excuse rape and male aggression (Socially sensative)
        • Not all men respond with aggression to infidelity e.g. some beg to stay together(Nature vs Nurture)
      • Acquisition of status
        • Aggression to gain status as status is adaptive  - it gives access to resources to aid survival and mates to aid reproduction
        • +Daily and Wilson correlation between income inequality and murder rates
          • income inequality creates status gaps, this study shows how aggression is higher were status is more apparent.
    • Explanations of Group Display
      • Sport
        • Sport is ritualised aggression where aggression is adaptive as it helps to gain status (Status brings resources and mates)
          • Unsanctioned aggression (Cheating) is also adaptive as it makes winning more likely
        • +Maxwell and Viscek found that rugby players who scored higher on professionalism (wanting to win no matter what) had more unsanctioned aggression
          • Real Rugby players - better eco. validity
          • Shows how aggression is adaptive in a group display
      • Warfare
        • Aggression in warfare is adaptive as it heightens chances of winning and gaining status
          • Also survival is more likely with protection of the group
          • Belligerence, bravery and self deception all improve chances of winning war
        • +Chagnon studied the Yanomami tribe and found that most warfare situations were over access to women. Also, those who had killed were more likely to be married
          • Shows how warfare leads to access to mates, an adaptive tool in the EEA
          • Evidence weak validity as it is anecdotal.
        • Alternate explanations - Obedience causes warfare aggression however, obedience can be seen as an adaptive trait.
          • Evolution unfalsifiable


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