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Evolutionary psychology: 'new science of the mind' or 'Darwinian fundamentalism'?

Swami, Viren (2007) Evolutionary psychology: 'new science of the mind' or 'Darwinian fundamentalism'? Historical Materialism, 15 (4). pp. 105-136. ISSN 1465-4466

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/156920607X245850


As practitioners of a putative science of the mind, evolutionary psychologists have earned a degree of cachet with their provocative and sometimes controversial pronouncements about human nature and behaviour. In this article, I briefly survey the history of an evolutionary approach to the psychological sciences before considering the core assumptions of the field that has come to be known as 'evolutionary psychology'. By examining one particular example of evolutionary psychological research - on interpersonal attraction - I find this 'new science of the mind' to be lacking. Rather, I propose that developmental systems theory, buffered by a reconsideration of the dialectical sciences, offers a more comprehensive and rigorous approach to psychology. I further propose that historical materialists and those on the Left generally should take a keen interest in these issues as they have a bearing on social and political outcomes.

Item Type:Article
Research Community:University of Westminster > Social Sciences, Humanities and Languages, School of
ID Code:4857
Deposited On:19 May 2008 10:02
Last Modified:05 Nov 2009 12:05

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