Genes, Culture, and Gender
Assignments by Group 14
(Compiled and posted by Paul Burkhart)
by Paul Burkhart
The gender war.
A topic that has fueled countless books, lectures, sitcoms,
movies, songs, and Social Psychology chapters.
Even from its humble beginnings, the
effects were disastrous:
Two people, both alike in dignity,
In fair Eden, where we lay our scene,
Where there was no ancient grudge to break to a new mutiny,
Where civil blood kept civil hands clean.
From forth the fruitful loins of the newly created earth
A pair of god-made lovers took their life as they knew it;
Whose misadventur’d pious overthrows
Doth with their spiritual death bury their father’s abundant life,
And gave way to spiritual death for all mankind.
Whose fault was it?
Was it the female?
She ate from the forbidden fruit first.
Was it the male?
He was meant to be the leader and the example for the female but
ended up following her example, and ended up throwing all of mankind into a state of
Or, was it mankind’s nature?
Man’s inherent nature based on freewill and
sin nature that caused the fall.
Or, was it environmental influence? The influence of the
serpent that changed the girl from a follower of the Father to a leader into spiritual death.
It is these sorts of questions that are discussed in this chapter.
Of course in a more
generalized, broad, and less specific sense, but it was a good little account to add as an
introduction, don’t you think.
It keeps it from being boring.
Anyway, I digress . . .
In order to compare and contrast any two things in all the world of Psychology
(Social or otherwise) one must apply the greater debate of “Nature vs. Nurture” to the
This one argument pretty much can help qualify any Psychological experiment
Thus, when discussing an issue such as gender similarities and differences, the
most organized way of ordering the information is by these two things.
A more specific
definition of both of these is used in the chapter:
Nature being specified as an
evolutionary perspective and Nurture being specified by a cultural perspective.
The evolutionary perspective emphasizes human kinship.
Overall, the sexes are
more alike than different.
They are all perceptive to the world around them, vulnerable to
the same body processes, and intensely social creatures.
Our universal behaviors arise
from our biological similarity.
To explain these genetic-based processes most scientists
ascribe to the theory of evolutionary psychology, which is based on the idea of natural
selection, which is the supposed evolutionary process by which nature selects traits that
best enable organisms to survive and reproduce in particular environmental niches.
Evolutionary Psychology itself is defined as the study of the evolution of behavior using