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Introducing Evolutionary Psychology

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Discusses the genetic forces that shape our personalities and introduces the principles of evolutionary psychology.


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Discusses the genetic forces that shape our personalities and introduces the principles of evolutionary psychology.

30 review for Introducing Evolutionary Psychology

  1. 4 out of 5

    Kevin Shepherd

    In keeping with the "Introducing" series tradition, Evolutionary Psychology combines quirky illustrations with straightforward, intelligent writing to make complex subject matter fun and understandable. Author Dylan Evans simplifies and clarifies such diverse EP concepts as body symmetry, brain modules, reciprocal altruism, and short-term mating strategies. *Did you know 'tit-for-tat' is a real scientific term? (I did not.) As for the illustrations, Oscar Zarate's art has flair and an element of In keeping with the "Introducing" series tradition, Evolutionary Psychology combines quirky illustrations with straightforward, intelligent writing to make complex subject matter fun and understandable. Author Dylan Evans simplifies and clarifies such diverse EP concepts as body symmetry, brain modules, reciprocal altruism, and short-term mating strategies. *Did you know 'tit-for-tat' is a real scientific term? (I did not.) As for the illustrations, Oscar Zarate's art has flair and an element of WTF! A few notables caught my eye: • Kin Selection (pg 74) - a diminutive Richard Dawkins sits on the lap of British biologist William Hamilton, as though Hamilton were a ventriloquist and Dawkins his puppet. • The Truth About Cinderella (pg 79) - a large portrait of a battered and bleeding child, under which two smirking psychologists, Canadians Martin Daly and Margo Wilson, are accurately predicting that step-parents beat their children more often than biological parents. • Weaning (pg 85) - a baby is apparently directing his mother's nipple as a fountain of milk gushes onto her lap. • Dads and Cads (pg 120) - a naked, pregnant woman with what looks to be a large penis-lizard perched on her shoulder. • Women's Extra-Pair Mating (pg 125) - to illustrate 'cuckold strategy,' a white woman, lying in bed, holding a offensively racist rendering of a black baby, while her doting white husband stands at her bedside. She is saying to her husband, "He looks just like you!" Five stars, minus one for page 125.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Dylan Evans

    Well, I loved it, but then I'm biased... Well, I loved it, but then I'm biased...

  3. 4 out of 5

    Mohammad

    short fun read to catch a glimpse of what evolutionary psychology is, specially when you have something important to do!

  4. 4 out of 5

    Rommel

    It doesn't go into technical details, which is fine and makes it a lot more readable. It gives general ideas on evolutionary psychology that we can readily observe around us. The text balloons and drawings can be distracting though. I particularly love the idea of modules, which reminds me of Warframe mods. Maybe that is the future: using modules like we're using clothing. Anyway, great read. It doesn't go into technical details, which is fine and makes it a lot more readable. It gives general ideas on evolutionary psychology that we can readily observe around us. The text balloons and drawings can be distracting though. I particularly love the idea of modules, which reminds me of Warframe mods. Maybe that is the future: using modules like we're using clothing. Anyway, great read.

  5. 4 out of 5

    Bettie

    Have many titles in this series and find them highly accessible for a quick check, especially when something crops up in RL (what's that then). So fun, had forgotten much but then I am allowed. It is a tentative subject though, a lot of guesswork, however I do love the graphic essay format. Have many titles in this series and find them highly accessible for a quick check, especially when something crops up in RL (what's that then). So fun, had forgotten much but then I am allowed. It is a tentative subject though, a lot of guesswork, however I do love the graphic essay format.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Darshan

    Short and simple book. Includes everything from early theories of brain to how it functions. It’s very interesting also all the chapters are 1/2 pages each so, never felt like I need to complete “n” number of pages still and procrastinate. Overall it’s a great one !

  7. 5 out of 5

    Tim

    Quite disappointing, I’ve enjoyed many of the other Introducing series but this is just not a good book. It may cover the ideas well but falls short of offering any substantial criticism of them, particularly poignant around genetic proximity and offering a set of algebra and proportions to explain sibling bias and preference with literally no explanation evidence or analysis. It also features two ‘graphic’ failures. The first is the famous ‘napalm girl’ image from the Vietnam war. This image was Quite disappointing, I’ve enjoyed many of the other Introducing series but this is just not a good book. It may cover the ideas well but falls short of offering any substantial criticism of them, particularly poignant around genetic proximity and offering a set of algebra and proportions to explain sibling bias and preference with literally no explanation evidence or analysis. It also features two ‘graphic’ failures. The first is the famous ‘napalm girl’ image from the Vietnam war. This image was not used to illustrate a point but because the subject is a child, which is truly bizarre. The second is using an illustration of the ‘cuckold strategy’ using an image of a white couple with a black child. I will not say any more than this other than to implore a curious reader to examine the image itself and the surrounding context for a deeply uncomfortable experience. Finally, in a section about criticism (of evolutionary psychology) the author states: The accusations of “genetic determinism” that some critics level at evolutionary psychology are completely unfounded. Evolutionary psychology does not place too much importance on genes. This statement is entirely unqualified and obviously ludicrous. There is no way of proving that it may or may not place too much importance on genes relative to ‘nothing’ and such a statement doesn’t belong anywhere in a book which claims to represent a scientific discipline. Obviously though some ideas within evolutionary psychology are useful and good, but need the same degree of skepticism you would offer anything other discipline if it is to be useful, painfully absent here.

  8. 5 out of 5

    Erik Moore

    The book "Evolutionary Psychology" by Dylan Evans & Oscar Zarate is a great work popularizing the science for the masses, even for young readers with a graphic novel-like format. It speaks frankly about the basis of evolutionary psychology in the cognitive sciences. Cognitive sciences move from wondering what the mind is to clearly linking acknowledging the substrate of biology as the substrate on which thinking takes place. Evolutionary psychology is the natural development of this, in that we The book "Evolutionary Psychology" by Dylan Evans & Oscar Zarate is a great work popularizing the science for the masses, even for young readers with a graphic novel-like format. It speaks frankly about the basis of evolutionary psychology in the cognitive sciences. Cognitive sciences move from wondering what the mind is to clearly linking acknowledging the substrate of biology as the substrate on which thinking takes place. Evolutionary psychology is the natural development of this, in that we would want to know how our biological thinking substrate has come to be formed, what its predispositions are, what it's good for, and what its limitations are. In the end, as the authors say, it will just be called "Psychology" because that is what real psychology is and does. I highly recommend this book. It has a great many similarities with my books, VPL 1.0, Visual Philosophy Language, From Metaphysics to Metadata" 2007, and "Seeing Through, A response to the five veils of fundamentalism." 2004. The commonalities include that we should work to understand the basis of our predispositions in order to make better decisions, and that can do something to accomplish that. The primary differences in perspectives include that VPL 1.0 includes a comprehensive diagramming language that allows for better self-analysis of one's own evolutionary modues, and in Seeing Through, I provide a critique of evolutionary predispositions that hurt human judgement, and how we can improve our situation by acknowledging that and changing our behavior.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Josh

    This series is amazing. Introducing takes complex academic subjects like Evolutionary Psychology or Physicss and makes them into wonderfully illustrated essays covering the breadth of the issue in an easy to digest format. But apparently people don't like learning, cause Powell's is getting rid of them for their lack of sales. Buy up people. Knowing cool shit is going out of style. Otherwise, it will be nothing but "For Dummys" books. Anyhow, this book was so interesting, it actually made me consi This series is amazing. Introducing takes complex academic subjects like Evolutionary Psychology or Physicss and makes them into wonderfully illustrated essays covering the breadth of the issue in an easy to digest format. But apparently people don't like learning, cause Powell's is getting rid of them for their lack of sales. Buy up people. Knowing cool shit is going out of style. Otherwise, it will be nothing but "For Dummys" books. Anyhow, this book was so interesting, it actually made me consider going back to school for a Masters in psych, though I only took psych 101 my freshman year, and never studied it again.

  10. 5 out of 5

    Ahmed Sanny

    Brief introductory book, very well organized, so it doesn't take more than one hour to read. In normal gossip I do like to talk about evolutionary psychology with friend and mates. Though I am not an expert but I would like to recommend this one those who have interest on evolutionary psychology. Ah-ha! Honestly speaking psychology under the light of evolution is much more interesting rather than regular psychology, and it makes logical sense with good logical consequences of our behaviors where Brief introductory book, very well organized, so it doesn't take more than one hour to read. In normal gossip I do like to talk about evolutionary psychology with friend and mates. Though I am not an expert but I would like to recommend this one those who have interest on evolutionary psychology. Ah-ha! Honestly speaking psychology under the light of evolution is much more interesting rather than regular psychology, and it makes logical sense with good logical consequences of our behaviors whereas regular one can not. Although I was expecting more topics on behavior psychology rather some historical highlighting. But still this book is great.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Desertdragon

    With wonderful and humorous illustrations, no less. A remarkably lucid and accessible introductory text to a vastly fascinating framework of psychological understanding.

  12. 5 out of 5

    Sinan Cingöz

    I wanted to read the book when I see it that it is suggested to Keanu Reeves by Wachowskis before he starts shootings for The Matrix. The book starts ok, since the book explains some brand topics of science in a couple of pages in which most of them are covered with drawings. But, further reading the book I realized there are so much raw assumptions to identify or explain the basics of a phenomena or an idea. So, I had to force myself till the end to bear all those wrong logic and thoughts. Alt I wanted to read the book when I see it that it is suggested to Keanu Reeves by Wachowskis before he starts shootings for The Matrix. The book starts ok, since the book explains some brand topics of science in a couple of pages in which most of them are covered with drawings. But, further reading the book I realized there are so much raw assumptions to identify or explain the basics of a phenomena or an idea. So, I had to force myself till the end to bear all those wrong logic and thoughts. Although, I can easily say that the book excites the critic thought in one but it meerely happens because the ideas are so general and has many corner cuts in them. I can only suggest the book who has no idea about evolution, psychology, genes and so like; then it may become an enjoyable reading with all those drawings and simple summaries of the topics. But if you have any prior knowledge, keep away from this book and read up-to-date ideas about evolutionaly psychology.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Diab Eman

    found it quite interesting

  14. 4 out of 5

    Arturo Castillo

    Know yourself with a new psychology school. This book completely breaks down this new science. Darwinism offers a paradigm shift in the field of psychology. Great book!

  15. 5 out of 5

    Gena

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. I actually really loved this book, it was informative and entertaining. I only had one problem with it and maybe mine just has a misprint I don't know. But Did anyone else see this mistake in the book? Is it just my book? The Wason Selection Task on page 144 It says There is a pack of cards in which there is a letter on one side and a number on the other. Four of these cards are placed on in the table in front of you as follows. (Mine reads): DF37 You are told that the following rule applies : If a I actually really loved this book, it was informative and entertaining. I only had one problem with it and maybe mine just has a misprint I don't know. But Did anyone else see this mistake in the book? Is it just my book? The Wason Selection Task on page 144 It says There is a pack of cards in which there is a letter on one side and a number on the other. Four of these cards are placed on in the table in front of you as follows. (Mine reads): DF37 You are told that the following rule applies : If a card has a D on one side, then it has a 3 on the other side. Which cards do you need to turn over to find out if this is true? On page 146 it says it's the first and last card. Why do you have to turn over the 7? The only card you should have to turn over is the D, because it doesn't say that a 3 has to have a D on the other side, only that a D has to have a 3 on the other side. Even if you assume the 3 must also have a D on the other side (because you know by the quiz on the right that they follow the same logic- which they don't) then you turn over the D and the 3 not the 7. Because you already know there is a letter on one side and a number on the other, that's not the rule, that's a fact you already know. All you have to figure out is whether there is a 3 on the other side of the D. Am I missing something????? It made me very angry.

  16. 4 out of 5

    C. Drying

    WHY DID YOU READ THIS BOOK? It's been on my TBR shelf for a very long time, and since I recently have become a fan of The Dark Horse Podcast (which is put out by two evolutionary biologists), I thought this book would give me applicable knowledge to expand my interest in the podcast. Note though this book is about psychology, not biology; however, the field of evolutionary psychology draws significantly from evolutionary biology. WHAT DID YOU LIKE ABOUT IT? This book is a graphic non-fiction book, WHY DID YOU READ THIS BOOK? It's been on my TBR shelf for a very long time, and since I recently have become a fan of The Dark Horse Podcast (which is put out by two evolutionary biologists), I thought this book would give me applicable knowledge to expand my interest in the podcast. Note though this book is about psychology, not biology; however, the field of evolutionary psychology draws significantly from evolutionary biology. WHAT DID YOU LIKE ABOUT IT? This book is a graphic non-fiction book, and I love this genre (if I can call it a genre), so that's what I like about it most. Furthermore, I was able to understand everything it presented, so I must be very smart, or the book presents its content well. WHAT DID YOU DISLIKE ABOUT IT? It's 21-years old; the graphics are horrible! Plus, I think brain science has advanced quite a bit in the last 20 years, which has either substantiated the field or has weakened it. As for the content (as opposed to the book's format), I couldn't shake off the feeling that the idea of modularity seemed so anecdotal, despite the book's assertion that the scientific method is rigorously employed. It seems to me—and I'm willing to bet—this theory will be dismissed in the future. DO YOU RECOMMEND IT TO OTHERS? I recommend the updated version.

  17. 5 out of 5

    Aric Hluch

    Much like the Very Short Introduction series by Oxford, the Introducing series distills complex ideas and summarizes the most important findings in various fields. This book introduces you to the history and development of evolutionary psychology. By combining evolutionary biology and cognitive psychology, scientists and philosophers have reached conclusions about human nature that could not have been made without adopting multidisciplinary principles. The graphics made the reading experience en Much like the Very Short Introduction series by Oxford, the Introducing series distills complex ideas and summarizes the most important findings in various fields. This book introduces you to the history and development of evolutionary psychology. By combining evolutionary biology and cognitive psychology, scientists and philosophers have reached conclusions about human nature that could not have been made without adopting multidisciplinary principles. The graphics made the reading experience enjoyable, helping to further simplify a number of hypotheses and arguments made by the most prominent evolutionary psychologists. What I really enjoyed about the book was the recommendations made for further reading on the subject. Multiple books on evolutionary psychology and scholarly journals are made known to the reader so that they can conduct their own research and corroborate the claims explored in the book. I also enjoyed the presentation of counterarguments. Many scientists disagree with proponents of evolutionary psychology, but it is clear that the field has offered a much more circumspect account of human nature. For a brief introduction to evolutionary psychology, this is a must read for idiots like myself.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Sina Iravanian

    Not only this book was the best book in this series that I've read so far, but also it became one of my favourite books. It's great both in terms of content and graphics. This book definitely encouraged me to read more about "Evolutionary Psychology". A big portion of the book is dedicated to the modular mind theory and how it can explain different human behaviours through the lens of evolution. This is the part that gives the reader the wow moments. Not only this book was the best book in this series that I've read so far, but also it became one of my favourite books. It's great both in terms of content and graphics. This book definitely encouraged me to read more about "Evolutionary Psychology". A big portion of the book is dedicated to the modular mind theory and how it can explain different human behaviours through the lens of evolution. This is the part that gives the reader the wow moments.

  19. 4 out of 5

    Ng Zi Xiang (Zack)

    Enjoyed reading this book. It fulfills what it sets out to achieve. Much of what I've read over the years on evolutionary psychology is beautifully explained in simple to understand terms with great visual illustrations, that I'd wish I had read this book 10 years ago. A definite read for those wanting to understand evolutionary psychology, for I'm sure this field will grow in the coming years. Enjoyed reading this book. It fulfills what it sets out to achieve. Much of what I've read over the years on evolutionary psychology is beautifully explained in simple to understand terms with great visual illustrations, that I'd wish I had read this book 10 years ago. A definite read for those wanting to understand evolutionary psychology, for I'm sure this field will grow in the coming years.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Kazim Das

    Good introductory book Using graphic illustrations, the book does a good job of introducing the topic in simple and lucid language. That said, if you are looking for more in depth analysis, then this book might disappoint you. The book provides good references for further study though.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Jason

    Activated modules in my mind I did not know I had. As a stepping stone into deeper study, or simply for someone interested in learning a little about, Evolutionary Psychology, the reading of this book is a must.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sarah Morgan Sandquist

    Excellent introduction This was a really concise and well organized introduction to evolutionary psychology. I learned a lot about the subject and enjoyed the addition of the further reading list.

  23. 5 out of 5

    Yueyun Lu

    An engaging first step to psychology Cute pictures Digestible small pieces of background information Clear bipartite structure to explain the concept of the topic while due to simplicity and briefness may still be lost by asking what's the key message An engaging first step to psychology Cute pictures Digestible small pieces of background information Clear bipartite structure to explain the concept of the topic while due to simplicity and briefness may still be lost by asking what's the key message

  24. 4 out of 5

    Daniel Motley

    Great introduction to evolutionary psychology Entertaining read that uses illustrations and short paragraphs to explain new and foreign concepts. Anyone looking for a book on evolutionary psychology should pick up this short read.

  25. 4 out of 5

    phil stockwell

    Accessible and enjoyable, but why the **** did they include the picture of Phan Thi Kim Phuc (aka Napalm girl) to make a point about children in general? I can't begin to understand the thought process behind that decision. Accessible and enjoyable, but why the **** did they include the picture of Phan Thi Kim Phuc (aka Napalm girl) to make a point about children in general? I can't begin to understand the thought process behind that decision.

  26. 4 out of 5

    Laurence Little

    Good introduction. Provides a biological and psychological background to this often misunderstood area of science that I had primarily previously encountered through philosophical studies. So this is where humanities engages with science.

  27. 5 out of 5

    Shubham Sharma

    An interesting read to understand how psychology is so much determined by evolution. Some propositions are axiomatic, but learnt a few key things on evolutionary psychology. For example: the first usecase of language was gossip! Rated low for very infrequent Aha! Moments.

  28. 5 out of 5

    E Escorce

    Nice read I enjoyed this book and would recommend to all interested in psychology and it evolution. Thank you Dylan Evans .

  29. 4 out of 5

    LJ

    A very general brief overview of the field. It could have used more references to scholars in the field and also more elaboration on the nature v. Nurture thread...

  30. 4 out of 5

    Alejandro Núñez baladrón

    One of the best in the series, excellent structure and no of the confusing explanations and typos that densely populate some of its siblings.

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