From: Chris Taylor (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Wed 10 Mar 2004 - 10:19:02 GMT
Actually that last post read a little fierce. I think I need to explain
that: My blanket loathing of all things EP (sorry) stems from the fact
that if these complex behavioural suites are under genetic control, then
more fundamental stuff like sexuality (and a string of nasty
dysfunctional behaviours) *surely must be*, which (apart from having
been squarely squashed through proper research) opens a rather ugly can
Randy Thornhill is an abhorrent name that springs to mind.
Anyway I do have solid unemotional objections to EP (like the effect of
genetic drift in a world with a much cheaper parallel copying
mechanism); but those rational objections become rather emotional when I
see what I believe to be nonsense paraded by the media as the reason why
bigots and rapists should be unconcerned by their pathetic worldview.
Chris Taylor wrote:
> This is daft -- the thing you're employing as an established premise is
> the most contentious thing in there -- you *have* to *prove* that this
> is a genetically controlled response to have a leg to stand on (which
> you can't). Otherwise you're just in there with Ted -- swapping ideas
> about posited black boxes we can't open. If the article had used 'may
> be' instead of 'is' it wouldn't irk me so.
> "Humans have evolved a psychological response"
> "Genes inducing suicidal behavior"
> "this evolved psychological mechanism"
> And as for this being the root of (most) war; I think you'll find the
> greed of the 'haves' at the core of most wars, rather than the
> deprivation of the 'have nots'. Diamonds, oil, columbo-tantalite,
> lebensraum when you already have lots of raum for your leben...
> Anyway seeing as you wouldn't answer my points without my having read
> the article, I'll try to make time to read it and then pass criticism
> back if you'll be good enough to point me at the latest draft.
> I hope there's something empirical to back up what, from the abstract,
> sounds like an opinion piece. All this stuff about switching things on,
> and evolved behaviours (and I am assuming you mean classically evolved,
> therefore genetic and 'hard-wired') is otherwise a just so story -- and
> frankly I don't care how long it's been out there, or who else 'likes'
> it (cf. Judaism etc.).
> Keith Henson wrote:
>> Stockholm Syndrome, more descriptively capture-bonding, is a
>> conditionally switched on evolved psychological trait humans have.
>> See http://www.human-nature.com/nibbs/02/cults.html for discussion re
>> this trait and the attention-reward mechanism (awkward terms, I know).
>> I need suggestions for what to call the psychological mechanism(s)
>> that induce humans (and chimps) into making organized war on other
>> groups either as a result of being attacked or due to xenophobic memes
>> amplified by privation/looming privation conditions. Shorter terms
>> based on Greek or Latin roots for war or war gods would probably be
>> better. Best suggestions to date have been based off Mars.
>> I am not far from having the first draft of this article done. If any
>> are interested in reviewing the draft, send me a note.
>> Keith Henson
>> Evolutionary Psychology, Memes, The Origin of War, Empowering Women
>> (Tentative title)
>> By H. Keith Henson
>> ABSTRACT. (DRAFT)
>> Our ancestors always lived close to their ecological limit, an
>> unstable upper bound for how many hominids (or lions or tigers or
>> bears) an environment can support. When reproduction pushes
>> populations over the limit or the limit fluctuates down because
>> conditions vary, part of the population will die, typically by
>> starvation. Humans have evolved a psychological response to looming
>> starvation; a mechanism that induced tribes to make war on nearby
>> tribes. The psychological response increases the circulation of
>> xenophobic memes among groups facing privation. Xenophobic memes
>> break down the normal reluctance of humans to attacking other humans
>> and synchronize warriors of one tribe to attack another. Genes
>> inducing suicidal behavior in the (male) members of a weak tribe
>> attacking a strong tribe had a selective advantage because the losing
>> tribe's young females (carriers of those genes) were usually
>> incorporated into the winning tribe. From a gene's perspective this
>> was better than starvation. In war situations self-preserving
>> (rational) behavior has not been favored by selection. I.e., "stupid"
>> decisions should be expected.
>> Being attacked turns on a related psychological response, rapidly
>> inducing xenophobia and a fighting response even in groups not facing
>> With appropriate mapping (looming starvation/privation into expected
>> or actual declining income per capita) this evolved psychological
>> mechanism accounts for the origin of most (if not all) historical
>> wars. While war was adaptive for hunter-gatherer level societies, war
>> is poorly adapted for human societies above that level.
>> Inherent in this model is a prescription for avoiding wars: keep
>> income per capita rising or at least not falling for *all* human
>> groups. Population growth itself does not lead to wars, but
>> population growth in excess of economic growth does. Empowering women
>> to limit births to a level below economic growth appears to be a key
>> to avoiding wars or ending long running conflicts.
>> This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
>> Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
>> For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)
>> see: http://www.cpm.mmu.ac.uk/jom-emit
-- ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Chris Taylor (email@example.com) MIAPE Project -- psidev.sf.net ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ =============================================================== This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing) see: http://www.cpm.mmu.ac.uk/jom-emit
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