Evolutionary Behavioral Science
"Evolutionary psychology is a theoretical approach in the social and
natural sciences that examines psychological structure from a modern
evolutionary perspective. It seeks to identify which human psychological
traits are evolved adaptations – that is, the functional products of
natural selection or sexual selection in human evolution. Adaptationist
thinking about physiological mechanisms, such as the heart, lungs, and
immune system, is common in evolutionary biology. Some evolutionary
psychologists apply the same thinking to psychology, arguing that the
modularity of mind is similar to that of the body and with different
modular adaptations serving different functions. Evolutionary
psychologists argue that much of human behavior is the output of
psychological adaptations that evolved to solve recurrent problems in
human ancestral environments.
Evolutionary psychologists suggest that it is not simply a subdiscipline of psychology but that evolutionary theory can provide a foundational, metatheoretical framework that integrates the entire field of psychology in the same way evolution has for biology.
Evolutionary psychologists hold that behaviors or traits that occur universally in all cultures are good candidates for evolutionary adaptations including the abilities to infer others' emotions, discern kin from non-kin, identify and prefer healthier mates, and cooperate with others. They report successful tests of theoretical predictions related to such topics as infanticide, intelligence, marriage patterns, promiscuity, perception of beauty, bride price, and parental investment.
The theories and findings of evolutionary psychology have applications in many fields, including economics, environment, health, law, management, psychiatry, politics, and literature.