Monday, May 2, 2011
Evolved Psychological Mechanisms
Evolved Psychological Mechanisms (EPMs) occur over time as a result of specific adaptive obstacles that a species must overcome. For example, toddlers have an inborn propensity towards learning a language, while for adults it can be much harder. The ability is there, though, because it is necessary for children to learn the native language to survive. Other EPMs include jealousy (which helps in keeping a mate) and phobias toward dangerous animals like snakes or spiders. Not all traits of organisms are adaptations: some characteristics are simply byproducts of adaptations like the ability to read and write, or random occurrences such as variations of voice pitch within the same sex.