Evolutionary psychology and the selectionist model of neural development: A combined approach

Evolution and Cognition 8:200-206 (2002)
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Evolutionary psychology and the selectionist theories of neural development are usually regarded as two unrelated theories addressing two logically distinct questions. The focus of evolutionary psychology is the phylogeny of the human mind, whereas the selectionist theories of neural development analyse the ontogeny of the mind. This paper will endeavour to combine these two approaches in the explanation of the human mind. Doing so might help in overcoming some of the criticisms of both theories. The first part of the paper mentions three standard objections to evolutionary psychology and then outlines three philosophical problems evolutionary psychology has to offer a solution to. The second part will try to show that an approach combining evolutionary psychology and the selectionist theory of neural development might overcome some of these objections.



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Bence Nanay
University of Antwerp

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