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Mirror Neurons and Discuss evolutionary explanations of human aggression.

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´╗┐mirror neuron system 24 marks) Mirror Neurons which are activated when we do an activity or we perceive others to do the same. Mirror neurons fire when they receive information and when they generate information to produce an action. This indicates biological evidence that someone has produced that some behavior as us. Research suggested that mirror neurons may be quite wide spread throughout the brain ? for activities seen, heard or done. fMRI is used to distinguish which part of brain are active during a task asked in 1st / 3rd person. Hesslow claims that when actions are simulated we activate the motor areas of the brain such a way that resembles the neural activation involved when doing the actual action itself. Meister in a study using fMRI scanning , found that similar fronto-parietal neurons were activated regardless of whether the piano was played silently or on an imaginary basic. Gazzola suggest that ToM skills are provided by feedback mechanisms in the brain (if we see people behaving in a particular way we an understand their state of mind because our brains take info we are experiencing and stimulates a form of understanding of our bodily state that would generate the same feeling in us. However the situation factors play an role. ...read more.


Furthermore research techniques used may not be accurate enough to identify specific neurons. The implication is that there may be few neurons being activated in response to a variety stimuli. Also research is reductionist because it oversimplify the complex human behavior and emotion. From the psychodynamic point of view there may be conflict between ego , id and superego. It is a nature ( neural activity) theory. Discuss evolutionary explanations of human aggression ( 9 marks + 16 marks ) The evolutionary view states that all aggressive behavior is a product of genetic programming and inheritance. Every individual is genetically programmed to maximize their fitness. There are two ways 1) reproducing and generating 2) by avoiding predation or by being successful predator. There are many types of aggression. Male on female aggression ? the men uses the violence to keep the women faithful to him. Miller study show that 55 % of battered wives perceived jealousy as reason for husband?s behaviour. The implication is that 45% of women reported that there was no jealousy so other factor must contribute. This explanation is reductionist , because it assumes that there is only one cause. Shackeford investigated the relationship between a women?s age , her husband?s age and the risk that he will murder het. ...read more.


So the explanation can be applied to real life, and help women in aggressive relationships, who receive violent abuse from males. Homicide doesn?t have much adaptive value. Duntley and Buss say that once anti-homicide defences begin to evolve, homicide becomes a far more costly strategy to pursue. As a result of this, the evidence is supported that homicide is a extreme form of aggression, but not an adaptive response to dealing with the problem in question. Evolutionary explanation is a nature theory because whole process is driven by evolution. We could argue that it is deterministic because our behaviour is determine by evolution. It is reductionist , because it seems to explain all behaviour as maximising fitness. On the other side it is not completely reductionist because it have more than one explanation of aggression; male on famele, jealousy. There is no many cross cultural research . However this theory expect that there are no cross cultural difference. The implication of this is that culture is reflection of evolution. From the psychodynamic point of view there may be conflict between id and ego. This explanation appears to be scientific, because it talks about gene, but do not specify the gene. Some people claims that this theory is not scientific approach as it is non-flausible. Something that cannot be proven is not scientific. ...read more.

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