Feminism and the Evolution of Sex Differences and Similarities
- 3.9k Downloads
Distrust between most evolutionary psychologists and most feminist psychologists is evident in the majority of the articles contained in this Special Issue. The debates between proponents of these perspectives reflect different views of the potential for transforming gender relations from patriarchal to gender-equal. Yet, with respect to the overall prevalence of sex differences or similarities, the articles in the Special Issue show that neither feminist psychologists nor evolutionary psychologists have uniform positions. Questions about how and if women and men differ are still under negotiation in the articles in this Special Issue as well as in other research related to evolutionary and feminist psychology. Clearer conclusions would be fostered by standardized metrics for representing male–female comparisons, more varied research methods for assessing both psychological and biological processes, greater diversity in populations sampled, and more researcher openness to taking into account findings that challenge their theories. Theoretical growth also is needed, especially to develop and integrate the many individual feminism-influenced theories represented in this Special Issue. To this end, we propose an integrative evolutionary framework that recognizes human culture in both ultimate and proximal causes of female and male behavior.
KeywordsGender Sex differences and similarities Feminism Evolutionary psychology
- American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association. Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- Buss, D. M., & Malamuth, N. M. (Eds.). (1996). Sex, power, and conflict: Evolutionary and feminist perspectives. New York: Oxford University Press.Google Scholar
- Chrisler, J. C., & Erchull, M. J. (2010). The treatment of evolutionary psychology in social psychology textbooks. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9783-5.
- Eastwick, P. W., Eagly, A. H., Finkel, E. J., & Johnson, S. E. (2011). Implicit and explicit preferences for physical attractiveness in a romantic partner: A double dissociation in predictive validity. Manuscript under review.Google Scholar
- Ellis, L. (2011). Evolutionary and neuroandrogenic theory and universal gender differences in cognition and behavior. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9927-7.
- Epstein, S. (2007). Inclusion: The politics of difference in medical research. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Fausto-Sterling, A. (1985). Myths of gender: Biological theories of women and men. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
- Fausto-Sterling, A. (2000). Beyond difference: Feminism and evolutionary psychology. In H. Rose & S. Rose (Eds.), Alas, poor Darwin: Arguments against evolutionary psychology (pp. 209–227). New York: Harmony Books.Google Scholar
- Fine, C. (2010). Delusions of gender: How our minds, society, and neurosexism create difference. New York: W.W. Norton.Google Scholar
- Frisby, B. N., Dillow, M. R., Gaughan, S., & Nordlund, J. (2010). Flirtatious communication: An experimental examination of perceptions of social-sexual communication motivated by evolutionary forces. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9864-5.
- Gangestad, S. W., & Simpson, J. A. (2007). Whither science of the evolution of mind? In S. W. Gangestad & J. A. Simpson (Eds.), The evolution of mind: Fundamental questions and controversies (pp. 397–437). New York: Guilford.Google Scholar
- Geary, D. C. (2009). Male, female: The evolution of human sex differences (2nd ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- Gilligan, C. (1982). In a different voice: Psychological theory and women’s development. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Gowaty, P. A. (2003). Power asymmetries between the sexes, mate preferences, and components of fitness. In C. B. Travis (Ed.), Evolution, gender, and rape (pp. 61–86). Cambridge: MIT.Google Scholar
- Hannagan, D. C. (2011). One species, two sexes, and politics by other means [Book review]. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-011-9944-1.
- Harris, C. R. (2010). Menstrual cycle and facial preferences reconsidered. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9772-8.
- Hrdy, S. B. (2009). Mothers and others: The evolutionary origins of mutual understanding. Cambridge: Belknap Press of Harvard University.Google Scholar
- Jordan-Young, R. M. (2010). Brainstorm: The flaws in the science of sex differences. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Kay, A. C., Jost, J. T., Mandisodza, A. N., Sherman, S. J., Petrocelli, J. V., & Johnson, A. L. (2007). Panglossian ideology in the service of system justification: How complementary stereotypes help us to rationalize inequality. In M. P. Zanna (Ed.), Advances in experimental social psychology. Advances in experimental social psychology, (Vol. 39, pp. 305–358). San Diego: Academic. doi: 10.1016/S0065-2601(06)39006-5.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Liesen, L. T. (2010). Feminists, fear not evolutionary theory, but remain very cautious of evolutionary psychology [Book Review]. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9857-4.
- Longino, H. (1990). Science as social knowledge: Values and objectivity in scientific inquiry. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Low, B. (2000). Why sex matters: A Darwinian look at human behavior. Princeton: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
- Martin, E. (2003). What is “rape?”—toward a historical, ethnographic, approach. In C. B. Travis (Ed.), Evolution, gender, and rape (pp. 363–381). Cambridge: MIT.Google Scholar
- Organization for the Study of Sex Differences. (2011). Homepage. Retrieved from http://web.memberclicks.com/mc/page.do?sitePageId=51319&orgId=ossd.
- Oxford English Dictionary Online. (2011). Sex. Retrieved from http://www.oed.com/view/Entry/176989?rskey=KdLtTC&result=1&isAdvanced=false#.
- Panksepp, J., & Panksepp, J. B. (2000). The seven sins of evolutionary psychology. Evolution and Cognition, 6, 108–131.Google Scholar
- Pederson, W. C., Putcha-Bhagavatula, A., & Miller, L. C. (2010). Are men and women really that different? Examining some of sexual strategies theory (SST)’s key assumptions about sex-distinct mating mechanisms. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9811-5.
- Perrin, P. B., Heesacker, M., Tiegs, T. J., Swan, L. K., Lawrence, A. W., Jr., Smith, M. B., et al. (2010). Aligning Mars and Venus: The social construction and instability of gender differences in romantic relationships. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9804-4.
- Richerson, P. J., & Boyd, R. (2005). Not by genes alone: How culture transformed human evolution. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.Google Scholar
- Sex Roles. (2010). Aims and scopes page. Retrieved from http://www.springer.com/psychology/personality+%26+social+psychology/journal/11199.
- Singh, D., & Singh, D. (2011). Shape and significance of feminine beauty: An evolutionary perspective. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-011-9938-z.
- Smiler, A. P. (2010). Sexual strategies theory: Built for the short term or the long term? Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9817-z.
- Smith, C. A., Konik, J. A., & Tuve, M. V. (2010). In search of looks, status, or something else? Partner preferences among butch and femme lesbians and heterosexual men and women. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9861-8.
- Sylwester, K., & Pawlowski, B. (2010). Daring to be darling: Attractiveness of risk takers as partners in long- and short-term sexual relationships. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9790-6.
- Tate, C. (2010). The “problem of number” revisited: The relative contributions of psychosocial, experiential, and evolutionary factors to the desired number of sexual partners. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9774-6.
- Thornhill, R., & Palmer, C. T. (2000). A natural history of rape: Biological bases of sexual coercion. Cambridge: MIT.Google Scholar
- Travis, C. B. (Ed.). (2003). Evolution, gender, and rape. Cambridge: MIT.Google Scholar
- Vandermassen, G. (2010). Evolution and rape: A feminist Darwinian perspective. Sex Roles, this issue. doi: 10.1007/s11199-010-9895-y.
- Wilson, E. O. (1975). Sociobiology: The new synthesis. Cambridge: Harvard University Press.Google Scholar
- Winterhalder, B., & Smith, E. A. (2000). Analyzing adaptive strategies: Human behavioral ecology at twenty-five. Evolutionary Anthropology, 9, 51–72. doi: 10.1002/(SICI)1520-6505(2000)9:2<51::AID-EVAN1>3.3.CO;2-7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Wood, W., & Eagly, A. H. (2010). Gender. In S. T. Fiske, D. T. Gilbert, & G. Lindzey (Eds.), Handbook of social psychology, (Vol. 5, pp. 629–667). Hoboken: Wiley.Google Scholar