By Thierry Hoquet
This root-and-branch second look of Darwin’s thought of sexual choice tackles the topic from old, epistemological and theoretical views. Contributions from a wealth of disciplines were marshaled for this quantity, with key figures in behavioural ecology, philosophy, and the historical past of technological know-how including to its wide-ranging relevance. Updating the reader at the debate at present reside in behavioural ecology itself at the centrality of sexual choice, and with assurance of advancements within the box of animal aesthetics, the e-book info the present country of play, whereas different chapters hint the background of sexual choice from Darwin to this present day and inquire into the neurobiological bases for companion offerings and the comparisons among the hedonic mind in human and non-human animals.
Welcome house is given to the social elements of sexual choice, relatively the place Darwin drew differences among keen men and coy ladies and rationalized this as evolutionary approach. additionally explored are the present definition of sexual choice (as against common choice) and its value in today’s organic learn, and the approaching critique of the idea from the nascent box of animal aesthetics. As a complete overview of the present wellbeing and fitness, or another way, of Darwin’s conception, one hundred forty years after the ebook of his Descent of guy, the ebook deals a uniquely rounded view that asks even if ‘sexual choice’ is in itself a innovative or reactionary suggestion, while it explores its theoretical relevance within the technical organic learn of the twenty-first century.
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Extra resources for Current Perspectives on Sexual Selection: What's left after Darwin?
Chapman and Hall, London Wright EO, Levine A, Sober E (1992) Reconstructing Marxism: essays on explanation and the theory of history. Verso, New York Chapter 2 Utility vs Beauty: Darwin, Wallace and the Subsequent History of the Debate on Sexual Selection Thierry Hoquet and Michael Levandowsky Abstract We examine the origins of the disagreement of Alfred Russel Wallace and Charles Darwin regarding the significance and mechanism of sexual selection and relate this to differences in their views of human evolution, and of cognitive ability and esthetic sensibilities of various human and nonhuman populations.
Our paper is twofold. First we focus on the disagreement between Darwin and Wallace. We give an overview of its roots and its scale, showing how it involved not only sexual, but also aspects of natural selection, and we consider some differences in their understandings of how selection works. This analysis suggests that the classical theme of Wallace refusing “sexual selection” on grounds of his rejection of “female choice” is but a part of a larger picture. In particular we consider possible differences in their views on how the evolutionary principles apply to the human species.
We trace subsequent versions of these differing views into the twentieth century, and the controversy between R. A. Fisher’s Darwinian “runaway” model of sexual selection by female choice (the “sexy son” model), and Wallacean models of sexual selection based on signs of greater fitness of males (the “healthy gene” hypothesis). Models derived from the latter, the “honest signal” and “handicap” models, are discussed, and we note that these different models, based on utility or beauty, are not necessarily mutually inconsistent.
Current Perspectives on Sexual Selection: What's left after Darwin? by Thierry Hoquet