[ExI] Evolution drivers, was what Darwin

Keith Henson hkeithhenson at gmail.com
Thu Jun 3 14:52:25 UTC 2010

On Wed, Jun 2, 2010 at 11:35 PM,  "spike" <spike66 at att.net> wrote:


> In the great apes, the dominant male gets most of the
> sex.  But humans are an intriquing oddball case: female choice is highly
> enabled, and perhaps getting moreso over time.  So that causes humans to
> develop a wild and interesting array of behaviors to attract mates.  Ours
> species is way out there in that we have a mind-boggling complicated mating
> dance compared to every other species I can imagine.

While in recent historical times there may have been considerable
female choice, that doesn't seem to have been particularly operative
during the vast length of time or ancestors lived as hunter gatherers.


This article is ten years old, the book that incorporates it was
published in 2006.


> A good exercise for the evolution fan is to really concentrate and think the
> hell out of mate selection vs survival selection, and ponder all the many
> implications.

I think an evolutionarily successful female strategy has been to be
attracted to high status males.  This almost certainly goes back to
the point males started provisioning females and young.  High status
males were better at provisioning their mates and children.  What
personality characteristics contributed to high status has changed
over evolutionary time.  For example, being a fierce warrior and a
good hunter worked in hunter gatherer groups.

Since the middle ages, when "stable agrarian" societies persisted for
20+ generations, different psychological traits were advantageous.
The lag in the sort of men females are attracted to may not have
caught up.

For those of you who have not read it, I consider this paper essential
to understanding the world we live in.



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