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Oxford University Press
Evolutionary Forensic Psychology: Darwinian Foundations of Crime and Law

Evolutionary Forensic Psychology: Darwinian Foundations of Crime and Law


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Evolutionary Forensic Psychology: Darwinian Foundations of Crime and Law

The field of forensic psychology explores the intersection of psychology and the law. The purpose of this book is to examine topics in the field using the powerful, multidisciplinary, conceptually integrated approach that the natural sciences have embraced for decades with great success.

Darwin's theory of evolution by natural selection is the meta-theoretical framework that unifies the field of biology. It unites research and understanding of the development, control, and organization of behavior. The study of humans, which includes all of the social sciences, is part of the field of biology. Darwin's theory provides a powerful meta-theoretical framework that can unify and energize forensic psychology, just as it has the biological sciences.

Evolutionary processes undoubtedly shaped physiological characteristics to help solve problems of survival and reproduction. The lungs, for example, with their vast surface area and moist membranes are marvelous adaptions for extracting oxygen and releasing carbon dioxide. Natural selection is the only known process capable of shaping complex functional mechanisms. Just as it shaped physiological adaptations with specific problem-solving functions, it also shaped our thoughts and emotions to guide behaviors toward solving recurrent problems of survival and reproduction. With this logic, we can use knowledge of ancestral problems to guide our understanding of how the mind works.

Evolutionary Forensic Psychology is a necessary step toward a unified and complete understanding of psychology and the law. It recognizes that crimes such as murder, non-lethal violence, rape, and theft are manifestations of evolutionarily recurrent selection when they gave individuals an advantage in competition for resources. Each of the chapters that comprise this volume has been selected to provide the first unified examination of important research contributions and future directions of Evolutionary Forensic Psychology.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780195325188
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 08/20/2008
Edition description: New Edition
Pages: 328
Product dimensions: 6.30(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents

Contributors     xiii
Introduction and Overview
Evolutionary Forensic Psychology   Todd K. Shackelford   Joshua D. Duntley     3
The Promise of Evolutionary Psychology for Criminology: The Examples of Gender and Age   Anthony Walsh   Kevin M. Beaver     20
Adaptation and Violent Crimes
The Origins of Homicide   Joshua D. Duntley   David M. Buss     41
Intimate Partner Violence   Aaron T. Goetz   Todd K. Shackelford   Valerie G. Starratt   William F. McKibbin     65
Adaptation and Sex Crimes
The Evolutionary Psychology of Sexual Harassment   Kingsley R. Browne     81
Evolutionary Psychological Perspectives on Rape   William F. McKibbin   Todd K. Shackelford   Aaron T. Goetz   Valerie G. Starratt     101
The World's Oldest Profession: Evolutionary Insights into Prostitution   Catherine Salmon     121
Adaptation and the Production of Criminal Behavior
Risk-Taking, Antisocial Behavior, and Life Histories   Sandeep Mishra   Martin L. Lalumiere     139
Theft   Satoshi Kanazawa     160
In Cold Blood: The Evolution of Psychopathy   Martin L. Lalumiere   Sandeep Mishra   Grant T.Harris     176
Victims of Crime
Victim Adaptations   Joshua D. Duntley   Todd K. Shackelford     201
The Evolution of a Sense of Justice   Dennis L. Krebs     230
Applications and Future Directions
Reducing Crime Evolutionarily   Lee Ellis     249
Did the Victim Deserve to Die? Darwin Goes to Court   J. Anderson Thomson Jr.     268
Author Index     287
Subject Index     301

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