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From the Rescuer to the Aggressor – understanding the 10 types of human | Science | The Guardian

“Dias tells the story of human behaviour through 10 tropes. The Kinsman will protect his or her own gene pool at the expense of any other. It’s illustrated in the first instance by a thought experiment in which there is a gunman in your child’s school (how many classmates are you prepared to sacrifice for the sake of your own? One of his colleagues got to, “all the other children in the world, except for one, for my child to play with) and moves into a detailed consideration of FGM as an iteration of parental love twisted by cultural norm…

…The proposition is that the human brain, and the behaviour emanating from it, has been, much like the human body, shaped by evolution. Acts of the most heinous violence, as well as acts of the most affecting altruism, are adaptive responses to the situations in which our societies and communities were built. The ultra-aggression of a child soldier is his way of inoculating himself against post-traumatic stress (and, in the moment, it works). Dias’s inquiry falls broadly into the field of moral cognition, “this incredible new discipline, putting together psychology, philosophy and neuroscience to map how the brain makes decisions,” he says, which he discovered recently at Harvard.

Evolutionary psychology is “highly contested,” Dias says. “There is a very persuasive and respectable group of scientists who are convinced that there are evolutionary modules of the brain, and we have these adaptations. There are others who cling to the idea of the brain as a more general computing processor. I don’t think that’s right, but this is an area of contest. It would be highly remiss of me to suggest that this is settled.”

Source: From the Rescuer to the Aggressor – understanding the 10 types of human | Science | The Guardian

I LOVE THIS TOPIC!!!!!!!!!! Love it, love it, love it. Will order the book today. I am of course, along with the author, part of the group of people who believe behaviour/the psyche is shaped by our quest to survive and thrive. I read an interesting example of this the other day regarding people deemed attractive. In developed countries with lower levels of violence the prototype of the attractive male is much more feminised (facial features etc.) than in countries with high levels of violence. Fascinating, isn’t it?

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33 comments on “From the Rescuer to the Aggressor – understanding the 10 types of human | Science | The Guardian

  1. Steve Ruis
    June 19, 2017

    I hope you find some value in it as it sounds bogus to me. I am immediately suspicious when someone comes up with 10 or 100 whatevers. Why not 23 or 17? Often these categories, strictly arbitrary and often linked to only one scenario (What’s a Kinsman when he is off duty? Sounds more like a role one can play … or not.), come out to be 8 or 9 in number but the author stretches to make it a nice round number (ten little fingers and ten little toes, …) or comes up with 13 and trims the list back because they don’t want to be unlucky.

    Evolution doesn’t give a rat’s ass about any of this; it is not directed. My partner has a saying “There used to be people who but they didn’t live long enough to pass on their genes.” as in “There used to be people who loved playing with lions, but they didn’t live long enough to pass on their genes.”

    I tend to believe that we make decisions subconsciously and then we come up for the reasons for those decisions consciously and after-the-fact. And what do we know about our subconscious minds? (Diddlely squat.) So, as far as I am concerned, the jury is still out on any of this.

    We expect a full book report, based upon your over the top enthusiasm! Hey, maybe I am wrong! (I know the idea sounds far fetched but I remember once back in the 1990’s when I was wrong. It could happen again.)

    ;o)

    Liked by 3 people

    • The Pink Agendist
      June 19, 2017

      I agree with your first paragraph. I have the impression he used the *10 types* format as a means to popularise the book and make it accessible to the average person- apart from using it to illustrate aspects of the concept.
      I first became interested in the topic around the time I came out. The more gay men I met, the more I heard similar stories. Independent of nationality, education or class there were really substantial similarities in the general “parcours”. It wasn’t the first time I’d noticed the phenomena. As you say we often act and then try to rationalise it later; but behind that is an impulse, or impulses. Those I think are born out of our survival instinct.
      There’s a wonderful 2005 book by Scott Forbes on the topic which is worth a look: http://press.princeton.edu/titles/8001.html

      Like

    • acflory
      June 19, 2017

      Without reading the book, I don’t want to pre-judge, but it does sound an awful lot like psycho babble to me. And I agree re evolution…it doesn’t judge our ‘value’, it’s simply a label that describes how the best /survivors/ pass on their genes in any given time and environment. But dominant genes don’t necessarily get wiped from the gene pool when the environment changes; they may simply become recessive – i.e. remain in the gene pool via those individuals for whom that particular gene was already recessive. Hmm…apologies, one of my hobby horses…

      Liked by 2 people

  2. inspiredbythedivine1
    June 19, 2017

    I’m currently writing a book on the 46 types of cat personalities and the 23 types of dog personalities. These numbers are exact, inerrant, and completely, totally, undeniably true. When I finish the book, I’m gonna start working on one about goldfish and why they have such shitty dispositions whenever I take them out of their bowls to be petted. Any-who, I’m off to count ant personalities before the sun sets. Bye now. 🙂

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Scottie
    June 19, 2017

    I really think the brain and our attitudes about things are shaped by environment. That is not to say that our brains have not evolved, I just think the hardwired responses are not to that level. I think they are more inline with the response need for our world versus the world centuries ago. I do think the subject is very interesting and I also wait for your review. As for the kinsman want to protect his own gene line, what about the Idea that in the larger context no sacrificing other children to save his child would protect his child by others willing to risks their child for the sake of his in a situation. Just a thought. Hugs

    Like

    • The Pink Agendist
      June 19, 2017

      That’s an interesting theory, except we can identify patterns that cross nationality, background and even species. Don’t you think that might point to something deeper?

      Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        That depends Pink, do the things you mention not share similar social features while others don’t. My view is that brains are shaped internally ( evolved ) and our ways of thinking about things are shaped mostly by our environment as we were developing and then to a lesser extent by the environment we live in as adults. I base this on the things people who live in the same countries, even the same districts or counties, have vastly different reactions to cultural stimulus. I know people who live on the “right side of the track” from birth develop thinking methods far different from the thinking methods of those from the “wrong side of the track”. Yet tests of intelligence are show to include the same range in subjects from both areas. Maybe I am misunderstanding what I am seeing? But that seems to me to mean a brain forms to a general extent by evolution and then the last big of evolution of the brain, the hard wiring, are done based on what the brain experiences while developing. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Again very interesting. But wouldn’t that mean that siblings of similar ages, for example, would mostly be very similar to each other?
        Have you read about the Italian study that showed that mothers of gay men had much higher fertility rates than mothers of heterosexual men? That might not tell the whole story, but there’s a good chance it may be a factor 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        I agree with you it should mean sibblings would be mostly wired the same and I think that is true. I don’t see how gay men having mothers who have more boys tend to have gay males in the younger children has to do with the mind? That is a body issue they think might cause it, a hormone or chemical developing in the womb. Unless you are talking about the siblings, and then it also tends out that in families with many male children if an older sibling is a gay male there is a higher chance of younger gay males. I was not aware of the study done in Italy I was thinking of one done in the US. But it should be true all over the world right, if the womb thing is correct? Thanks for an interesting topic to think on. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Do you think there’s evidence for this high rate of sibling similarity? I don’t see it. What I see instead in familial groupings is the adoption of archetypal roles which are generally noticeably distinct. Roles in a typical hierarchy. Stronger/weaker/in need of help/talker/loner etc.

        The study I mention shows there may be an evolutionary angle to male homosexuality. It’s possible that in family units where fertility is high, some of the male offspring will not reproduce. Here’s a link: http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2008/06/gay-genes-may-be-good-women

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        Hello Pink. Before I jump over to read the study you linked to ( if I can understand it 🙂 ) I did a quick google search to make sure I was repeated what I thought I read correctly. Here is a link to the easy to read one. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fraternal_birth_order_and_male_sexual_orientation
        “A correlation between fraternal birth order and male sexual orientation has been suggested by research. Ray Blanchard identified the association and referred to it as the fraternal birth order effect. In several studies, the observation is that the more older brothers a man has from the same mother, the greater the probability is that he will have a homosexual orientation.[1] It has sometimes been called the older brother effect. It has been estimated that 15% of the homosexual demographic is associated with fraternal birth order.” “The fraternal birth order effect has been described by one of its proponents as “the most consistent biodemographic correlate of sexual orientation in men.”[3] According to several studies, each older brother increases a man’s odds of having a homosexual orientation by 28–48%.[4][5][6][7][8] The fraternal birth order effect accounts for approximately one seventh of the prevalence of homosexuality in men.” Now there is something about a nonconformist study. I don’t understand that , but they did give the names and dates of the studies and said that they disagreed with this study. Oh and on the ranking order of birth I can understand that and I am not sure what that means for the subject. I Guess I will defer to those more studied than I. OK off to read the link. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        I’m not referring to birth order, but to the study that measured female fertility in the mothers of gay men. I’m not sure what you think the birth order study has to do with my point?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        I didn’t , I thought that was what you were talking about. I just started reading the article you linked to. This is the order things went in my mind. You were talking about the evolution in the brain. I thought that the part of the brain developed based on the environment you grew up in. The environment vr. heredity argument. Then you sent me the reply about the hierarchical roles. That is where I got the order of siblings birth from. If I have misunderstood the post or your reply I apologize. If my understanding is wrong on the science or the topic, I willing withdraw my comments. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Don’t apologise!!!! Discussion and challenge are key to progress and learning!!!! This is necessary to deciding what makes the most sense 😉

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        I understand, but if I misunderstood the premise we are talking about I can’t learn anything nor reply with any things dealing with the subject. That is all. Off to finish the article you linked to. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Questioning is always good!
        My original point is there are underlying factors that push us in certain directions. I (and others) believe those are linked to the evolutionary process. Or, put in other words, to the process that influences the *survival of the fittest*.
        Do you think the evil stepmother archetype is accidental or does it have an evolutionary angle? How about homophobia? Or patriarchy? Can animal impulses help explain where and how these things were formed?

        Liked by 1 person

    • acflory
      June 19, 2017

      Yes! co-operation is as much a part of evolution as competition.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Scottie
    June 19, 2017

    OK I read the paper you linked to, and then I went on a search online so that I could say what I think with some level of certainty. What I read a while ago said that the mother’s body had an allergic reaction to male fetuses. So in looking it up I found only one in a quick search. So it may not be a pressing theory in science circles.
    https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/pop-psych/201608/more-evidence-regarding-the-causes-homosexuality
    “Effectively, then, the mother’s immune system would (sometimes) treat certain male proteins produced by the fetus as a foreign pathogen and attempt to attack it, resulting in a few quirks of development, such as a homosexual orientation or even fetal loss if the reaction was strong enough (i.e. miscarriages).”

    So from what I read I think evolution gave us many behaviors to help us survive, but not a system to have gay children. I think that comes from changes in a female’s body when she has children and how the combined chemicals between mother and child may cause some genes or switches about sexuality to be set one way or the other. I think there may also be factors yet not found or studied. I wish I could have found more information, but when I went to the paper the short story came from I couldn’t put it all together. I look forward to the ideas others have. Hugs

    Liked by 1 person

    • acflory
      June 19, 2017

      Mmm…not sure about /male/ foetuses, but I have read that the mother’s body sees all foetuses are foreign and would eject them but for….>insert some hormone or other whose name I can no longer remember< Okay, now I have to go look it up instead of doing my real work….damn you Pinky!

      Liked by 1 person

      • acflory
        June 19, 2017

        Okay, this is from wiki – sorry for the length:

        ‘The placenta functions as an immunological barrier between the mother and the fetus, creating an immunologically privileged site. For this purpose, it uses several mechanisms:

        It secretes Neurokinin B containing phosphocholine molecules. This is the same mechanism used by parasitic nematodes to avoid detection by the immune system of their host.[3]
        Also, there is presence of small lymphocytic suppressor cells in the fetus that inhibit maternal cytotoxic T cells by inhibiting the response to interleukin 2.[2]
        The placental trophoblast cells do not express the classical MHC class I isotypes HLA-A and HLA-B, unlike most other cells in the body, and this absence is assumed to prevent destruction by maternal cytotoxic T cells, which otherwise would recognize the fetal HLA-A and HLA-B molecules as foreign. On the other hand, they do express the atypical MHC class I isotypes HLA-E and HLA-G, which is assumed to prevent destruction by maternal NK cells, which otherwise destroy cells that do not express any MHC class I.[4] However, trophoblast cells do express the rather typical HLA-C.[4]
        It forms a syncytium without any extracellular spaces between cells in order to limit the exchange of migratory immune cells between the developing embryo and the body of the mother (something an epithelium will not do sufficiently, as certain blood cells are specialized to be able to insert themselves between adjacent epithelial cells). The fusion of the cells is apparently caused by viral fusion proteins from endosymbiotic endogenous retrovirus (ERV).[5] An immunoevasive action was the initial normal behavior of the viral protein, in order to avail for the virus to spread to other cells by simply merging them with the infected one. It is believed that the ancestors of modern viviparous mammals evolved after an infection by this virus, enabling the fetus to better resist the immune system of the mother.[6]’

        Liked by 2 people

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        I found it rather fun. I normally don’t get much incentive to look up sciency stuff. I love it. I had thought I read something on this and wanted to make sure. What surprised me the same paper gave that as a reason why some boys have low birth weights, so I think you are correct, it is all fetuses the mother reacts too ( it is a foreign object inside her ) . Interesting. So many ideas to think on. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • inspiredbythedivine1
        June 19, 2017

        “Ideas, other than mine, suck.” Donald Trump, circa 2017.

        Liked by 1 person

      • acflory
        June 20, 2017

        Yeah, I love this kind of stuff too. Very nerdy. 😀

        Liked by 1 person

    • The Pink Agendist
      June 19, 2017

      So you read the study I linked to, ignored it, and then went off to cite a different one which was relevant to your theory?
      None of what I said implies a system designed to have gay children, but one where gay children enter the equation under certain circumstances. I have the impression you’re looking for an either or answer whereas I’m discussing greatest likelihood of patterns from a mathematical angle 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        No I did not ignore it. I felt that the write up I read did not explain the difference in male children because it did not talk other factors. did they count the kids first and then go look for who was gay? did they look at gay people and go count the members in the families? I did get they said statistically it was a .05 difference in number of children per family. The write upp you linked to as I read it talked about others on the maternal line, such as aunts may be having more children. They talked about fertility but I couldn’t see the connection really. I went look for the write up for the allergic reaction thing to make sure I was not talking out my backside, which I do often enough to double check myself. Now you were looking for a mathematical angle as you say. I am shit dumb at math, never took it and can barely add or subtract simple numbers, more complex math is a fable to me. As for biology, I do have a much better grounding in that and can understand something about it. However according to Meeka I was wrong anyway if I read what she wrote correctly. Hugs

        Like

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        I am confused, are we talking about maybe causes of being born gay? I admit I don’t know math, but how can math do that? Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Math makes it possible for us to identify the patterns, and that’s the basis for statistical research. And even more so for a statistical truth.
        We’re not identifying cause by exclusion, but cause by mathematical probability by possibility (and then exclusion) Sorry, Aspie thing 😀

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        Really, I never thought of you as having Asperger’s Syndrome. I did have to look up what you wrote 🙂 and I guess I don’t know much about the syndrome. From what I know I learned on TV and they said that some have OCD and others are very pattern / routine oriented. Meaning as I took it they could see patterns in things others missed and that they prefer routine actions. IS that correct. Can you do a post on how it affects you and your daily life? On the post topic, I guess I did miss the point. Again I don’t understand math concepts. Still it will be interesting to read what everyone thinks. Hugs

        Like

      • The Pink Agendist
        June 19, 2017

        Moshe (Liberty of Thinking) and Agrudzinski are probably much better than me at explaining numbers. They’re much more used to outside interaction. I never leave the house for more than 3.5 to 4 hours per month 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

      • Scottie
        June 19, 2017

        Wow I have been forced into that the last two to three months due to pelvic & femur bones. I am not to have weight until after my replacement surgery then the healing time. SO I have not been out except for doctors visits and won’t be for a few more months. My surgery is on June 21 and they say 10 weeks before I can add weight. I am going crazy even with my setup. I can not imagine doing it by choice. That is why I wanted to hear how it affects you, because it is hard for me to understand, and I did want to understand. Thanks for sharing. Hugs

        Liked by 1 person

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