XYY Theory Evaluation


XYY Theory


  • 15/1000 people in prison with XYY versus 1/1000 in the general population suggesting they are overrepresented
  • Adler et al. (2007) indicated that it is possible that aggressive and violent behaviour is at least partly determined by genetic factor


  • Studies found that genetic abnormalities are widespread throughout the general population and therefore cannot explain aggression
  • Focusing too heavily on genetics ignores the behaviourist approach
  • Theilgaard (1984) researched the traits of XYY men compared to XY men and found the aggressive characteristics were not associated with XYY men


There is evidence to suggest that there is an over representation of males with XYY chromosomes but this is undermined by the fact that there are genetic issues throughout the prison population which implies that the XYY theory cannot fully explain or account for criminality, as well as the fact it is far too reductive.


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