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1994 (16) Heft 1

Soziobiologie

 


Abstracts | Inhalt | Editorial

Hartmut Kliemt
Der avancierte Affe. Zur Rolle soziobiologischer und philosophischer Theorien über die menschliche Natur
3-19

Abstract: In this article sociobiology is ,put into perspective,, from a history of ideas and a systematical point of view. It is argued that it would be foolish to regard biology as irrelevant to our concept of man and society. At the same time it would be grossly inadequate too to ignore the characteristics of human kind.

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Laura Betzig
The Point of Politics
20-37

Abstract: Why do men and women compete? And what makes them compete more or less? An answer to the first question follows directly from Darwin. If Homo sapiens, like other species, is a product of natural selection, then we should have evolved to compete in order to reproduce. An answer to the second question follows from more recent versions of Darwinism. People, like other organisms, are likely to compete socially - to form dominance hierarchies - to the extent that it is costly for subordinates to flee ecologically. This paper first reviews evidence that winners at political competition have consistently won at reproductive competition. Next, it documents the slow shift toward declining political competition - toward democracy, and toward declining reproductive competition - toward monogamy, in the course of Western history. Last, it offers a model of what might account for that change.

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Bobbi S. Low
Human Sex Differences in Behavioral Ecological Perspective
38-67

Abstract: Behavioral ecology, based in the theory of natural selection, predicts that certain behaviors are likely to differ consistently between the sexes in humans as well as other species: aggression, resource striving, information content of sexual signalling. These differences, though of course open to modification by cultural practice, arise because male and female humans, like males and females of other mammal species, typically optimize their reproductive lifetimes through different behaviors: males specializing in mating effort (which has a high fixed cost, and is not offspring-specific), and females in parental effort (which has more linear reproductive returns, and is offspring-specific). The resulting patterns are reviewed.

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Randy Thornhill
Is There Psychological Adaptation to Rape?
68-85

Abstract: Psychological adaptation underlies all human behavior. Thus, rape could either arise from a rape-specific psychological adaptation or it could be a side-effect of a more general psychological adaptation not directly related to rape. The rape-specific hypothesis and the incidental effect hypothesis are explained. Determinig the specific environmental cues that men's sexual psyche has been designed by selection to process will allow us to decide which of these two hypotheses is true. I focus on rape, and briefly look at other types of sexual coercion, such as sexual harassment and incest.

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Jörg Klein
Die biologischen Wurzeln des Inzestverbots
86-100

Abstract: Does an inclination towards incest exist and why is incest prohibited? There are mainly two points of view: that of Sigmund Freud, the founder of psychoanalysis, and that of Edward Westermarck, a Finnish-British anthropologist. Freud is of the opinion that men have a profound desire for incest, whereas Westermarck presumes an instinctive aversion against it. Nowadays the discussion has received fresh impulse due to a modern interpretation of Westermarck's theory and the controversy over the sexual abuse of children in their families. The author is in favour of the Westermarck theory and tries to explain the prohibition of incest based on a natural inhibition towards incest.

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Paul Winkler
Fremdenfeindlichkeit aus der Sicht der Evolutionsbiologie
101-115

Abstract: Evolutionary biology tries to explain the adaptability of different traits including social behaviour. However, it does not and cannot say anything about what is 'good' or 'bad' behaviour. If scientists try to do so they risk being put into the same category as ideologists and political demagogues. Evolutionary biology can tell us something about the phylogeny of certain types of behaviour including xenophobia. It can describe which constraints can lead to the outbreak of such behaviour, without thereby legitimating this behaviour.

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