Evolutionary explanations can explain aggression in many ways, including infidelity and jealousy

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The evolutionary approach suggests that any behaviour we display now must have had value in increasing our chances of surviving and passing on are genes in the past.  There has been a lot of research conducted into the evolutionary theory which provides some explanation to aggression yet has limitations.

Evolutionary explanations can explain aggression in many ways, including infidelity and jealousy. Jealousy can be a potential trigger for aggression with the purpose of preventing cuckoldry from happening. Cuckoldry occurs when a women deceives her male partner into investing in offspring conceived with another man. If cuckoldry occurs men will lose both invested resources and reproductive opportunities and therefore males have evolved strategies to prevent mates from infidelity and prevent themselves being cuckolded. Camilleri devised the cuckoldry risk hypothesis. This predicts that males are willing to use sexually coercive tactics such as partner rape when risk of cuckoldry is high. Concluding, males will use aggression if cuckoldry is likely to occur.

Supporting research by Lalumiere et al say some men carry out partner rape if in order to decrease cuckoldry which supports the explanation that aggression may be caused to prevent cuckoldry. Supporting research from Thornhill and Thornhill suggest that women who refuse sex may be signalling that she is unfaithful, thus increasing males sexual jealousy and fear of cuckoldry consequently leading to aggression. In addition, more supporting research by Goetz and Shackelford found that women who reported their partners being sexually coerced were more likely to have been unfaithful. This is significant because its men who fear of being cuckolded not women. A major limitation of this research is that it only explains why males are aggressive. This research doesn’t explain why females are aggressive.

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However, research in mate aggression was conducted by Buss and Shakelford on male and female aggression. They examined mate-retention tactics in married couples. Compared to women, men reported a higher use of intrasexual threats (violence to another man) whereas women reported a greater use of verbal possession signals. They also found that, men with younger female partners devoted more effort in retention tactics, including violence to rivals and threats to the female partner.

Supporting research was completed by Shakelford; they used a survey method to test predictions concerning the use of male retention strategies. As expected males use of retention ...

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