Jerry Coyne on changing his mind about Evolutionary Psychology

Yesterday, Jerry Coyne was linked to my article about his noticeable shift regarding his acceptance of evolutionary psychology. It wasn't addressed to me, but I liked his reply. ...Well, since you brought it up, I don’t see it as odious (as some have) that I changed my mind about the field. Part of it involved doing more reading about it, and teaching it, but most of it I attribute to the fact that the early excesses of evolutionary psychology have been tempered as the field has started … [Read more...]

Flip of a Coyne: Jerry now champions Evolutionary Psychology

Recently, this article by Ed Clint prompted me to ask whether or not Evolutionary Psychology (EP) is getting a fair shake. I ended up writing about it a few more times, and each time somebody would bring up Jerry Coyne's scathing indictments on the entire field. That's all moot now, with a recent flip of a Coyne. I don't blame them for quoting Jerry Coyne. It's not necessarily a logical fallacy to appeal to authority, and it's pretty much all a lay-person can do. In fact, that's what I was … [Read more...]

Evolutionary psychology explains why he’s a good boy

I'm not talking about the polarizing EvoPsych related to gender, sexism, shopping, or even humans. I'm talking about dogs! National Geographic filmed 'The Science of Dogs' a few years back. I found a particular segment to be relevant to recent blog posts regarding EvoPsych. The psychology of a dog's degree of 'human suggestibility' is tested against a similar group of wolves. www.youtube.com/embed/iDt0ZygNUNQ#t=2314 That's pretty cool. At the 41:00 mark, the dogs are tested and … [Read more...]

Four exciting papers on evolutionary psychology

I find the following evolutionary psychology papers fascinating. Listed in no particular order. I. Fears, Phobias, and Preparedness: Toward an Evolved Module of Fear and Fear Learning Arne Ohman - Karolinska Institute | Susan Mineka - Northwestern University Viewed from the evolutionary perspective, fear is central to mammalian evolution. As a product of natural selection, it is shaped and constrained by evolutionary contingencies. It is a central thesis of this article that this … [Read more...]

Is evolutionary psychology not getting a fair shake?

I am not a scientist, but I am a fan of calm, rational scientific debate. One of my favorite bloggers, Rebecca Watson, has been one of many voices critical of the field of 'evolutionary psychology'. Until recently, I simply accepted it as a failed science. Now I'm back on the fence, largely leaning the other direction. UCLA graduate student, Ed Clint also appears to be a fan of Rebecca Watson. However, he is much more of an expert in this particular topic, as he has experience in the field. … [Read more...]