Guided by principles of life history strategy development, this study tested the hypothesis that sexual precocity and violence are influenced by sensitivities to local environmental conditions. Two models of strategy development were compared: The first is based on indirect perception of ecological cues through family disruption and the second is based on both direct and indirect perception of ecological stressors. Results showed a moderate correlation between rates of violence and sexual precocity (r = 0.59). Although a model incorporating direct and (...) indirect effects provided a better fit than one based on family mediation alone, significant improvements were made by linking some ecological factors directly to behavior independently of strategy development. The models support the contention that violence and teenage pregnancy are part of an ecologically determined pattern of strategy development and suggest that while the family unit is critical in affecting behavior, individuals’ direct experiences of the environment are also important. (shrink)
Female behavior that is driven by ambivalent attachment is far from passive or withdrawn. As dramatised in the movie such women's emotional hyper-reactivity is often expressed in violence, which is antithetical to securing investment from mates or peers. Single motherhood, rather than reflecting an avoidant strategy in which close relationships are devalued, is often the result of ecological conditions in which paternal investment is desired but unavailable.
Benefits to females of short-term mating have recently been identified, and it has been suggested that women have evolved adaptations for this strategy. One piece of evidence supporting such a female adaptation would be that women find the experience of a one-night stand as affectively positive as men. Individuals (N = 1,743) who had experienced a one-night stand were asked to rate aspects of their “morning after” feelings (six positive and six negative). Women were significantly more negative and less positive (...) than men. Although women did not especially view these relationships as a prelude to long-term relationships, they felt greater regret than men about having been “used.” Extra-pair copulations were rated more negatively, but not less positively, than singles’ experiences. There was no interaction between gender and mated status on positivity or negativity. Although, in terms of subsequent affective response, women do not seem well adapted to casual sexual encounters, it may be important to distinguish impelling sexual motivation preceding intercourse from later evaluations of the event. Menstrual cycle changes may also be important in altering the strength and target of sexual motivation. (shrink)
The strategic pluralism model depends upon pathogen prevalence and environmental hardship being independent. Evidence is presented that they are positively correlated. The rise in short-term mating strategy in the United States is better explained by changes in the operational sex ratio than by increases in pathogen prevalence. Nonetheless, in highlighting the advantages of a high-investment strategy to less attractive males, Gangestad & Simpson's model helps to clarify the dynamics of frequency-dependent selection.
When aggression is conceptualised in terms of a cost-benefit ratio, sex differences are best understood by a consideration of female costs as well as male benefits. Benefits must be extremely high to outweigh the greater costs borne by females, and circumstances where this occurs are discussed. Achievement of dominance is not such a circumstance and evidence bearing upon women's egalitarian relationships is reviewed. Attempts to explain sex differences in terms of sexual dimorphism, sex-of-target effects, social control, and socialisation are found (...) to be inadequate. The suggestion that the stigmatisation of female aggreession arises not from patriarchal imposition but from statistical rarity (resulting from evolutionary pressures) is given serious consideration. Two hypotheses (“internal read-out” versus social/epidemiological representations) are described to explain the relationship between sex differences in behaviour and corresponding lay explanations. (shrink)
A test of a biosocial model is reported in which we found no impact of circulating testosterone on either status-seeking or aggression. The fact that sex differences in competitiveness and aggression appear in childhood strongly suggests that the major impact of testosterone is organisational. Whereas dominance and resources are linked among males, female aggression may be a function of pure resource competition, with no element of status-seeking.
Definitional slippage threatens to equate secondary sociopathy with mere criminality and leaves the status of noncriminal sociopaths ambiguous. Primary sociopathy appears to show more environmental contingency than would be implied by a strong genetic trait approach. A reinterpretation in terms of hypermasculinity and hypofemininity is compatible with the data.