David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Hypatia 27 (1):3-27 (2012)
In 2002, Evolution and Human Behavior published a study purporting to show that the differences in toy preferences commonly attributed to girls and boys can also be found in male and female vervet monkeys, tracing the origin of these differing preferences back to a common ancestor. Despite some flaws in its design and the prima facie implausibility of some of its central claims, this research received considerable attention in both scientific circles and the popular media. In what follows, I survey some of the problems with this study that seem to be characteristic of research into sex differences in a particular research program in evolutionary psychology. I suggest that an epistemology of ignorance is at work that suppresses the methods and insights of an earlier research program, which emphasized the complexity and contingency that ultimately grounds the variety of human behaviors, in favor of one that has been widely criticized as empirically flawed and politically pernicious. I conclude with some speculative remarks on the persistence of this problematic research program in evolutionary psychology
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
L. Alcoff (1988). Cultural Feminism Versus Post-Structuralism: The Identity Crisis in Feminist Theory. Signs 13 (3):405--436.
Jerome Barkow, Leda Cosmides & John Tooby (eds.) (1992). The Adapted Mind: Evolutionary Psychology and the Generation of Culture. Oxford University Press.
A. Battro (2001). Half a Brain is Enough: The Story of Nico. Cambridge University Press.
Lynda I. A. Birke (2000). Feminism and the Biological Body. Rutgers University Press.
David J. Buller (2005). Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature. MIT Press.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Edouard Machery (web). Discovery and Confirmation in Evolutionary Psychology. In Jesse J. Prinz (ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Psychology. Oxford University Press.
Helen De Cruz (2006). Towards a Darwinian Approach to Mathematics. Foundations of Science 11 (1-2):157-196.
Chris Haufe (2008). Sexual Selection and Mate Choice in Evolutionary Psychology. Biology and Philosophy 23 (1):115-128.
Sefa Hayibor (2009). Evolutionary Psychology and Business Ethics Research. Business Ethics Quarterly 19 (4):587-616.
Russil Durrant & Brian D. Haig (2001). How to Pursue the Adaptationist Program in Psychology. Philosophical Psychology 14 (4):357 – 380.
Dylan Evans, From Moods to Modules: Preliminary Remarks for an Evolutionary Theory of Mood Phenomena.
Bence Nanay (2002). Evolutionary Psychology and the Selectionist Model of Neural Development: A Combined Approach. Evolution and Cognition.
Rodrigo de Sá-Nogueira Saraiva (2006). Classic Ethology Reappraised. Behavior and Philosophy 34:89 - 107.
reviewed Edouard Machery & H. Clark Barrett (2006). David J. Buller: Adapting Minds: Evolutionary Psychology and the Persistent Quest for Human Nature,. Philosophy of Science 73 (2):232-246.
Elisabeth A. Lloyd (1999). Evolutionary Psychology: The Burdens or Proof. [REVIEW] Biology and Philosophy 14 (2):211-33.
Kim Q. Hall (2012). “Not Much to Praise in Such Seeking and Finding”: Evolutionary Psychology, the Biological Turn in the Humanities, and the Epistemology of Ignorance. Hypatia 27 (1):28-49.
Christopher D. Horvath (2000). Interactionism and Innateness in the Evolutionary Study of Human Nature. Biology and Philosophy 15 (3):321-337.
Added to index2011-11-04
Total downloads18 ( #89,233 of 1,096,603 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #265,701 of 1,096,603 )
How can I increase my downloads?