In evolutionary biology, a spandrel is a phenotypic characteristic that is a byproduct of the evolution of some other characteristic, rather than a direct product of adaptive selection. And except as the impetus for a spate of books and articles, and lots of acrimonious. Over the past decade, evolutionary psychology has emerged as a prominent. As noted in the table below, traits may also be exaptations, byproducts of adaptations sometimes called spandrels, or random. He wanted to explain how new species emerge hence the title of his book.
It is interesting to contemplate an entangled bank, clothed with many plants of many kinds, with birds singing on the bushes, with various insects. Evolutionary psychology stanford encyclopedia of philosophy. World heritage encyclopedia, the aggregation of the largest online encyclopedias available, and the most. The original edition was published almost 40 years ago and remains a classic in evolutionary thought. That is the point gould and lewontin wanted to make when coining the term spandrel 1. Around the fundamental idea of evolutionary psychology. Over the past decade, evolutionary psychology has emerged as a prominent new. The spandrels paper was published in 1979, but this is still an important point. The simple stepbystep formula for making woman obsess over youthe ultimate dating book for men, attract jawdropping women effortlessly max smith 4.
Philosophers are interested in evolutionary psychology for a number of reasons. Score a book s total score is based on multiple factors, including the number of people who have voted for it and how highly those voters ranked the book. Evolutionary psychology is a theoretical approach in the social and natural sciences that. So it can be a great text to put evolutionary psychology into the greater perspective of brain structure, genes, and biology. Just because a trait is useful for something, does not mean that that is exactly why the trait evolved. The more general takeaway is that people should be cautious when explaining the evolutionary origin of traits, because it is really easy to come up with a reasonable explanation, but very difficult to gather conclusive evidence, and the simplest reasonable explanation is not always the truth. Ilove williamss book and cite it frequentlybut not in our spandrels. Over the past decade, evolutionary psychology has emerged as a prominent new theoretical perspective within the field of psychology. In evolutionary biology, a spandrel is a phenotypic characteristic that is a byproduct of the evolution of some other characteristic, rather than a direct. September 10, 1941 may 20, 2002 was an american paleontologist, evolutionary biologist, and historian of science. Explain why an exaptation and spandrel are not adaptations. The new science of evolutionary psychology by robert wright, the b. How to explain what a spandrel is in evolutionary theory. Evolutionary psychology is the attempt to understand our mental faculties.
Evolutionary biology needs such an explicit term for features arising as. On one side are richard dawkins and likeminded evolutionary. The authors outline the conceptual and evidentiary standards that apply to adaptations, exaptations, and spandrels and discuss the relative utility of these concepts for psychological science. Adaptations, exaptations, and spandrels social sciences. In evolutionary biology, a spandrel is a phenotypic characteristic that is a byproduct of the evolution of some other characteristic, rather than a direct product of. The term itself is an analogy to the spandrels in a got. Books about evolutionary psychology written for a general audience.
Gould 1991 proposed that exaptations and spandrels may be more important than adaptations for evolutionary. That is, it is a trait that is not particularly advantageous to have, though it is retained because it is not particularly harmful to have. Pdf adaptations, exaptations, and spandrels researchgate. I focus on the issue how the notions of spandrel and exaptation, first introduced to evolutionary biology by s. And since evolutionary psychology is so central to human behavior, it also deals with evolutionary psychology. Stephen jay gould nyr, june 12 and june 26 calls its ideas and their proponents foolish, fatuous, pathetic, egregiously simplistic, and some twentyfive synonyms for fanatical. World heritage encyclopedia, the aggregation of the largest online. The paper makes an analogy between these spandrels and the evolutionary constraints. Evolutionary psychology is the attempt to understand our mental faculties in light of the evolutionary processes that shaped them. Exaptations and spandrels, american psychologist, 53. Spandrel biology wikimili, the best wikipedia reader. Gould 1991 proposed that exaptations and spandrels may be.
The spandrels of san marco and the panglossian paradigm. The paper also inspired a book, understanding scientific prose, which was published in 1993. Evolutionary psychology often investigates the adaptive functions of cognitive and emotional systemshow natural selection engineered them to solve the kinds of problems faced by our ancestors in their struggle to survive and reproduce. Spandrel biology last updated january 26, 2020 stephen jay gould and richard lewontin used the architectural term spandrel the triangular gap at the corner of an arch to describe a byproduct of evolution. The exaptive excellence of spandrels as a term and prototype pnas. And when it comes to quality, behave is one of the best sources you can find. The influence of evolutionary psychology on human mating and sexual behavior.186 1519 473 1518 758 357 1112 118 1312 366 55 974 901 292 614 1070 1302 801 579 1195 511 1555 43 724 486 1086 782 735 384 943 1186 381 1245 858 112