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evolutionary psychologyEvolutionäre Psychologie (ger.)

  • An approach to psychology which considers psychological characteristics and behaviour in terms of their presumed origin as advantageous functional adaptations during evolution (rather than, for example, in terms of cultural influences on behaviour) (OED 2012)
    cultural studies

    To explain the origin of this instinct [i.e. cruelty: »inflicting pain for its own sake«] by evolutionary psychology is, I believe, impossible in the present state of our knowledge; for there is no period in the history of the race at which it is conceivable that the latter should have derived any benefit from the birth and development of this peculiar passion. 

    Physicus (1874). Psychology of cruelty. Nature 11 [nr. 269], 149.
    the latest evolutionary psychology of Spencer, Maudsley and Chauncey
    Shields, C.W. (1877). The Final Philosophy, or, System of Perfectible Knowledge Issuing From the Harmony of Science and Religion: 376; cf. Romanes, G.J. (1878). A Candid Examination of Theism: xvi; Cope, E.D. (1889). An outline of the philosophy of evolution. Proc. Amer. Philos. Soc. 26, 495-505: 499.