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CSULB / Art / ANTH 216 / What is the naturalistic fallacy?

What is the naturalistic fallacy?

What is the naturalistic fallacy?

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Sex and Evolution  


What is the naturalistic fallacy?



Exam 1 Study Guide  

1. SCIENCE AND EXPLANATION

a. What are the three criteria of a good scientific explanation? Understand  what each means.

1. falsifiable predictions  

2. replicability  

3. parsimony  

b. What are proximate and ultimate explanations? Understand the differences  between the two types of explanations.

• PROXIMATE: the explanation comes from a personal experience, within  one’s life, or has physical origins (ex. fear of snakes, sound of snakes  triggering fear centers in brain)  

• ULTIMATE: the explanation is functionally and evolutionarily based (ex.  fear of snakes, ancestors who didn’t fear snakes were more likely to die of  snakebites)  


What are the four basic forces of evolution?



c. What are the ways that one can test ultimate explanations? 1. correspondence  

2. cross-species comparison  

3. lab controlled experiments  

d. What is the naturalistic fallacy?

• the fallacy is that only beneficial traits are those that evolve, HOWEVER  evolution has no moral compass  

2. NATURE AND NURTURE

a. Explain the confusion between the two different questions asked about  nature and nurture. For which of these questions does the nature and  nurture dichotomy make sense? Why?

1. What is the cause of trait expression?  

2. What is the cause of phenotypic variation among people?  

• both questions make logical sense  

• because all behavior is biological, and has biological proximate causes;  behavior is arguably both genetic and environmental  


Explain the three constraints on perfection.



b. What is the blank slate view (tabula rasa)? Why is it problematic? • blank slate view - thoughts, beliefs, desires programmed by culture,  socialization; people can be shaped into anything they’re socialized to be.  • PROBLEMATIC: some are better at learning than others, people can have  specific psychological deficits or aptitudes, human universals We also discuss several other topics like What are the building blocks of dna found within the nucleus passed down from generation to generation?
Don't forget about the age old question of What is the meaning of appeal in law?

c. What is heritability? Why is it important?

• the proportion of a trait’s variation in a population caused by genetic  differences; if you can’t pass down a trait that increases reproductive  success there would be no evolution We also discuss several other topics like What is the meaning of working?

3. EVOLUTION AND ITS GENETIC BASIS

a. What is evolution?

• cumulative changes in a population across generations  

b. What are the four basic forces of evolution? Understand each. 1. mutation (gene copying error) - ultimate source of all genetic variation 2. migration (gene flow)  

3. genetic drift  

4. natural selection

c. What are the three prerequisites for evolution by natural selection? Know  why each is important. Don't forget about the age old question of What is the meaning of gram-positive in biology?
If you want to learn more check out What is an acidic solution?

1. variation - because there must be different phenotypes or alleles from  which selection can choose  

2. differential reproduction - selection only “chooses” among varieties  that differ in their effects on reproduction  

3. heritability - only if parents pass on their traits / alleles to their offspring  can selection cause the spread of successful variants in the population  

d. What are the three factors that govern the rate of evolution by natural  selection? How does each of these factors affect the rate of evolution?  If you want to learn more check out What is ubaid (6000-3700bc)?

e. What is an adaptation?  

• a trait modified by natural selection to perform some function that  increased reproduction ancestrally  

f. Genetics terms to be familiar with: genotype, phenotype, haploid, diploid,  gamete, chromosome, meiosis, mitosis, recombination, crossing-over,  allele, DNA, cytoplasm, mutation

4. ADAPATION

a. Explain the three constraints on perfection.

1. cost - a trait that’s perfectly suited to a function might be too costly to produce  or harmful to fitness in other functional domains

2. variation (phylogeny) - selection can choose only from existing variation, it  can’t create variation  

3. time - selection takes time to shape traits, to move trait mean to optimum  under election. Organisms are adapted to ancestral environment.  

b. Explain the difference between obligate and facultative adaptations. • obligate - they are fixed in adulthood (ex. teeth)  

• facultative - track some aspect of the environment and adjust the  phenotype in ways that were adaptive ancestrally (ex. pupil size, skin  tanning)  

c. When do facultative adaptations evolve? Are they heritable? What are  reaction norms? Understand mate guarding behavior in soapberry bugs.  • they change the phenotype to increase fitness within a certain range of  environmental values; selection favors facultative when the benefits of  changing the phenotype outweighs the costs over the evolution of the  species  

• SOAPBUGS: grasping every female = facultative, grasping every female  they copulate with = still facultative, as it’s dependent on the sex ratio  

d. What is a susceptibility?  

• a failure of the genotype to respond adaptively. This could occur because  of any of the contracts on perfection.  

e. What is mental modularity?

• mind is made up of genetically influenced and domain-specific mental  algorithms or computational modules

5. LEVELS OF SELECTION

a. What are the three levels of selection?  

1. gene  

2. individual - adaptive features are acquired by and passed on to individual  organisms, they benefit individual organisms directly

3. group - favoring some groups over others, leading to the evolution of traits  that are group-advantageous

b. What is the problem with group selection?

c. Understand the behaviors listed in the trait space diagram in the slides.  

d. What are a gene’s two routes into the next generation?

1. front-door - to have sex and have children  

2. back-door (kin selection) - helping family/siblings to have children because the  offspring is still partially you

e. What is altruism?  

• behavior of an animal that benefits another at its own expense

f. What is kin selection?  

• natural selection in favor of behavior by individuals that may decrease their  chance of survival but increases that of their kin (who share a proportion of  their genes)

g. What is Hamilton’s rule?  

• the cost to the altruistic individual will be smaller than the inevitable benefit  to the individual who is on the receiving end of the situation; the recipient  and altruistic individual are almost always related  

• rb > c (r = probability that the recipient carries the same allele, b = benefit  to recipient, c = cost)  

h. What is inclusive fitness?  

• the ability of an individual organism to pass on its genes to the next  generation, taking into account the shared genes passed on by the  organism's close relatives

6. WHY SEX?

a. What is sex? (recombination)

• the recombination of DNA from two individuals to produce an organism  with a novel genotype (recombination is the essence of sex)  

b. What is meiosis? Understand gamete formation, crossing over, and  independent assortment.

• meiosis: the process of gamete formation whereby organisms reduce the  number of chromosomes in the reproductive cells from diploid to haploid

c. What are the four types of asexual reproduction?  

1. DNA replication and cell division  

2. budding, shoots, and runners (plants)  

3. self-fertilization  

4. development of unfertilized eggs  

d. What are the four costs of sex? Understand each.

1. recombination  

2. meiosis (genes only contribute to half of the individual offspring)  3. “producing sons” - males don't directly produce offspring

4. mating - time and energy, mate attraction and competition, vulnerability,  disease risk  

e. What are the four hypotheses put forward about the evolution of sex?  Understand the theory and criticisms of each. What are co-evolutionary  arms races? What are r and K strategists?

• HYPOTHESES: lottery principle (applies best to r strategists, low mean  fitness, high variance; successful when odds are low), Muller’s Ratchet (harmful mutations accumulate in asexual populations, sexuals produce  some offspring with few mutations, mutation must be common to outweigh  the costs of sex), Red Queen (predicts mate choice based on parasite  resistance).  

• co-evolutionary arms races (Red Queen hypothesis) - produces  

phenotypes that have not yet existed and thus won’t be at an immediate  disadvantage against parasites adapted to the parental genotypes  • r strategists - “cheap” offspring, don't invest really anything into the raising  of children; a lot of offspring  

• k strategists - “expensive” offspring, invest a very long time in children until  they mature, like humans  

7. MALES AND FEMALES

a. What is the biological definition of males and females? What is  anisogamy?

• females produce large gametes and males produce small gametes  • anisogamy is sexual reproduction by the fusion of dissimilar gametes

b. Why did sexes evolve? Understand the Parker, Baker and Smith model of  disruptive selection and the concept of cytoplasmic conflict. What  happens in Chlamydomonas?

• sexes evolved to avoid self-fertilization, multicellular life evolved and  gamete production/fertilization became the most efficient form of sexual  reproduction  

• Parker, Baker, and Smith: selection would begin to favor large gametes  (females, with extra cytoplasmic content) and small gametes (males, more  gametes lead to more offspring) simultaneously, thus occurred disruptive  selection where the extremes (large gametes and small gametes) are  preferred, producing the two sexes  

• in Chlamydomonas, their gametes are all the same size  

c. Why are there as many males as females? Understand sex ratio and  frequency dependent selection.  

• there are as many males as females because when the average male  reproductive success = the average female reproductive success, then  males = females

d. What are the types of hermaphroditism? Why did each type evolve? 1. simultaneous - where species have little contact with one another, where  mate availability is limited (ex. earth worms)

2. sequential (protandry and protogyny)

e. What is gonochorism?

• state of having just one of at least two distinct sexes in any one individual  organism

8. SEXUAL SELECTION

a. What are the four mechanisms of sexual selection discussed in class?  What characters does each mechanism favor in the competing sex? 1. contests - size, strength, aggression, weapons, threat displays  

2. mate choice - behavioral/morphological traits to attract mates  

3. sexual coercion - harassment, punishment, forced copuation  

4. sperm competition - sperm displacement, high sperm production  

b. What is sexual dimorphism and why does it evolve?

• distinct difference in size or appearance between the sexes of an animal in  addition to difference between the sexual organs themselves

• it evolves because  

c. Why does only one sex (usually males) often have sexually selected traits?  What is the relationship between parental investment, reproductive rates,  and the operational sex ratio?  

d. What information do sex role reversed species give us in the context of  sexual selection?

e. What are the three types of mating systems and how are they related to the  operational sex ratio?

1. monogamy - where the operational sex ratio = 1; females are equal to  males  

2. polygyny - males are the fast sex  

3. polyandry - females are the fast sex  

f. What is Bateman’s principle and how does it relate to reproductive  variance?

• Bateman’s Principle is the suggestion that in most species, males are the  sex with more reproductive variability (variance) and in reproductive  success

9. WHY BE CHOOSY?

a. What characterizes the fast sex? What characterizes the slow sex?  • fast sex - less involvement in offspring  

• slow sex - more involvement in the growth and development of offspring  

b. What is the Coolidge Effect?

• theory that males’ (more than females) sexual enthusiasm is renewed  when they are introduced to new partners, as opposed to old ones; can  copulate more quickly with new partners  

c. What are the four costs of choosiness?

1. time

2. energy

3. predation risk

4. opportunity costs  

d. What are the non-genetic benefits of choosiness?  

• the preferred trait that provides non-genetic benefits to shower and/or  offspring: resources, territories, decreased risk of parasitic infection,  parental care

e. What is the polygyny threshold model? How does it explain the potential  benefits to females?

• the polygyny threshold model is the idea that males are the faster  reproducing sex  

• access to more quality resources with mating polygyny (sharing male  mates)  

f. What are the genetic benefits of choosiness? Understand Fisher’s  runaway sexual selection and the Hamilton-Zuk hypothesis.

• the benefit is that preference piggyback on the success of traits in the  individual, and widespread drives the trait to extremes  

• Hamilton-Zuk: mate choice based on traits that indicate heritable disease  resistance  

g. Understand the lek paradox and the ways genetic variability is maintained  in populations.

• Lek Paradox - females choose certain males based on sexual  

characteristics that aren’t directly involved in reproduction

Sex and Evolution  

Exam 1 Study Guide  

1. SCIENCE AND EXPLANATION

a. What are the three criteria of a good scientific explanation? Understand  what each means.

1. falsifiable predictions  

2. replicability  

3. parsimony  

b. What are proximate and ultimate explanations? Understand the differences  between the two types of explanations.

• PROXIMATE: the explanation comes from a personal experience, within  one’s life, or has physical origins (ex. fear of snakes, sound of snakes  triggering fear centers in brain)  

• ULTIMATE: the explanation is functionally and evolutionarily based (ex.  fear of snakes, ancestors who didn’t fear snakes were more likely to die of  snakebites)  

c. What are the ways that one can test ultimate explanations? 1. correspondence  

2. cross-species comparison  

3. lab controlled experiments  

d. What is the naturalistic fallacy?

• the fallacy is that only beneficial traits are those that evolve, HOWEVER  evolution has no moral compass  

2. NATURE AND NURTURE

a. Explain the confusion between the two different questions asked about  nature and nurture. For which of these questions does the nature and  nurture dichotomy make sense? Why?

1. What is the cause of trait expression?  

2. What is the cause of phenotypic variation among people?  

• both questions make logical sense  

• because all behavior is biological, and has biological proximate causes;  behavior is arguably both genetic and environmental  

b. What is the blank slate view (tabula rasa)? Why is it problematic? • blank slate view - thoughts, beliefs, desires programmed by culture,  socialization; people can be shaped into anything they’re socialized to be.  • PROBLEMATIC: some are better at learning than others, people can have  specific psychological deficits or aptitudes, human universals

c. What is heritability? Why is it important?

• the proportion of a trait’s variation in a population caused by genetic  differences; if you can’t pass down a trait that increases reproductive  success there would be no evolution

3. EVOLUTION AND ITS GENETIC BASIS

a. What is evolution?

• cumulative changes in a population across generations  

b. What are the four basic forces of evolution? Understand each. 1. mutation (gene copying error) - ultimate source of all genetic variation 2. migration (gene flow)  

3. genetic drift  

4. natural selection

c. What are the three prerequisites for evolution by natural selection? Know  why each is important.

1. variation - because there must be different phenotypes or alleles from  which selection can choose  

2. differential reproduction - selection only “chooses” among varieties  that differ in their effects on reproduction  

3. heritability - only if parents pass on their traits / alleles to their offspring  can selection cause the spread of successful variants in the population  

d. What are the three factors that govern the rate of evolution by natural  selection? How does each of these factors affect the rate of evolution?  

e. What is an adaptation?  

• a trait modified by natural selection to perform some function that  increased reproduction ancestrally  

f. Genetics terms to be familiar with: genotype, phenotype, haploid, diploid,  gamete, chromosome, meiosis, mitosis, recombination, crossing-over,  allele, DNA, cytoplasm, mutation

4. ADAPATION

a. Explain the three constraints on perfection.

1. cost - a trait that’s perfectly suited to a function might be too costly to produce  or harmful to fitness in other functional domains

2. variation (phylogeny) - selection can choose only from existing variation, it  can’t create variation  

3. time - selection takes time to shape traits, to move trait mean to optimum  under election. Organisms are adapted to ancestral environment.  

b. Explain the difference between obligate and facultative adaptations. • obligate - they are fixed in adulthood (ex. teeth)  

• facultative - track some aspect of the environment and adjust the  phenotype in ways that were adaptive ancestrally (ex. pupil size, skin  tanning)  

c. When do facultative adaptations evolve? Are they heritable? What are  reaction norms? Understand mate guarding behavior in soapberry bugs.  • they change the phenotype to increase fitness within a certain range of  environmental values; selection favors facultative when the benefits of  changing the phenotype outweighs the costs over the evolution of the  species  

• SOAPBUGS: grasping every female = facultative, grasping every female  they copulate with = still facultative, as it’s dependent on the sex ratio  

d. What is a susceptibility?  

• a failure of the genotype to respond adaptively. This could occur because  of any of the contracts on perfection.  

e. What is mental modularity?

• mind is made up of genetically influenced and domain-specific mental  algorithms or computational modules

5. LEVELS OF SELECTION

a. What are the three levels of selection?  

1. gene  

2. individual - adaptive features are acquired by and passed on to individual  organisms, they benefit individual organisms directly

3. group - favoring some groups over others, leading to the evolution of traits  that are group-advantageous

b. What is the problem with group selection?

c. Understand the behaviors listed in the trait space diagram in the slides.  

d. What are a gene’s two routes into the next generation?

1. front-door - to have sex and have children  

2. back-door (kin selection) - helping family/siblings to have children because the  offspring is still partially you

e. What is altruism?  

• behavior of an animal that benefits another at its own expense

f. What is kin selection?  

• natural selection in favor of behavior by individuals that may decrease their  chance of survival but increases that of their kin (who share a proportion of  their genes)

g. What is Hamilton’s rule?  

• the cost to the altruistic individual will be smaller than the inevitable benefit  to the individual who is on the receiving end of the situation; the recipient  and altruistic individual are almost always related  

• rb > c (r = probability that the recipient carries the same allele, b = benefit  to recipient, c = cost)  

h. What is inclusive fitness?  

• the ability of an individual organism to pass on its genes to the next  generation, taking into account the shared genes passed on by the  organism's close relatives

6. WHY SEX?

a. What is sex? (recombination)

• the recombination of DNA from two individuals to produce an organism  with a novel genotype (recombination is the essence of sex)  

b. What is meiosis? Understand gamete formation, crossing over, and  independent assortment.

• meiosis: the process of gamete formation whereby organisms reduce the  number of chromosomes in the reproductive cells from diploid to haploid

c. What are the four types of asexual reproduction?  

1. DNA replication and cell division  

2. budding, shoots, and runners (plants)  

3. self-fertilization  

4. development of unfertilized eggs  

d. What are the four costs of sex? Understand each.

1. recombination  

2. meiosis (genes only contribute to half of the individual offspring)  3. “producing sons” - males don't directly produce offspring

4. mating - time and energy, mate attraction and competition, vulnerability,  disease risk  

e. What are the four hypotheses put forward about the evolution of sex?  Understand the theory and criticisms of each. What are co-evolutionary  arms races? What are r and K strategists?

• HYPOTHESES: lottery principle (applies best to r strategists, low mean  fitness, high variance; successful when odds are low), Muller’s Ratchet (harmful mutations accumulate in asexual populations, sexuals produce  some offspring with few mutations, mutation must be common to outweigh  the costs of sex), Red Queen (predicts mate choice based on parasite  resistance).  

• co-evolutionary arms races (Red Queen hypothesis) - produces  

phenotypes that have not yet existed and thus won’t be at an immediate  disadvantage against parasites adapted to the parental genotypes  • r strategists - “cheap” offspring, don't invest really anything into the raising  of children; a lot of offspring  

• k strategists - “expensive” offspring, invest a very long time in children until  they mature, like humans  

7. MALES AND FEMALES

a. What is the biological definition of males and females? What is  anisogamy?

• females produce large gametes and males produce small gametes  • anisogamy is sexual reproduction by the fusion of dissimilar gametes

b. Why did sexes evolve? Understand the Parker, Baker and Smith model of  disruptive selection and the concept of cytoplasmic conflict. What  happens in Chlamydomonas?

• sexes evolved to avoid self-fertilization, multicellular life evolved and  gamete production/fertilization became the most efficient form of sexual  reproduction  

• Parker, Baker, and Smith: selection would begin to favor large gametes  (females, with extra cytoplasmic content) and small gametes (males, more  gametes lead to more offspring) simultaneously, thus occurred disruptive  selection where the extremes (large gametes and small gametes) are  preferred, producing the two sexes  

• in Chlamydomonas, their gametes are all the same size  

c. Why are there as many males as females? Understand sex ratio and  frequency dependent selection.  

• there are as many males as females because when the average male  reproductive success = the average female reproductive success, then  males = females

d. What are the types of hermaphroditism? Why did each type evolve? 1. simultaneous - where species have little contact with one another, where  mate availability is limited (ex. earth worms)

2. sequential (protandry and protogyny)

e. What is gonochorism?

• state of having just one of at least two distinct sexes in any one individual  organism

8. SEXUAL SELECTION

a. What are the four mechanisms of sexual selection discussed in class?  What characters does each mechanism favor in the competing sex? 1. contests - size, strength, aggression, weapons, threat displays  

2. mate choice - behavioral/morphological traits to attract mates  

3. sexual coercion - harassment, punishment, forced copuation  

4. sperm competition - sperm displacement, high sperm production  

b. What is sexual dimorphism and why does it evolve?

• distinct difference in size or appearance between the sexes of an animal in  addition to difference between the sexual organs themselves

• it evolves because  

c. Why does only one sex (usually males) often have sexually selected traits?  What is the relationship between parental investment, reproductive rates,  and the operational sex ratio?  

d. What information do sex role reversed species give us in the context of  sexual selection?

e. What are the three types of mating systems and how are they related to the  operational sex ratio?

1. monogamy - where the operational sex ratio = 1; females are equal to  males  

2. polygyny - males are the fast sex  

3. polyandry - females are the fast sex  

f. What is Bateman’s principle and how does it relate to reproductive  variance?

• Bateman’s Principle is the suggestion that in most species, males are the  sex with more reproductive variability (variance) and in reproductive  success

9. WHY BE CHOOSY?

a. What characterizes the fast sex? What characterizes the slow sex?  • fast sex - less involvement in offspring  

• slow sex - more involvement in the growth and development of offspring  

b. What is the Coolidge Effect?

• theory that males’ (more than females) sexual enthusiasm is renewed  when they are introduced to new partners, as opposed to old ones; can  copulate more quickly with new partners  

c. What are the four costs of choosiness?

1. time

2. energy

3. predation risk

4. opportunity costs  

d. What are the non-genetic benefits of choosiness?  

• the preferred trait that provides non-genetic benefits to shower and/or  offspring: resources, territories, decreased risk of parasitic infection,  parental care

e. What is the polygyny threshold model? How does it explain the potential  benefits to females?

• the polygyny threshold model is the idea that males are the faster  reproducing sex  

• access to more quality resources with mating polygyny (sharing male  mates)  

f. What are the genetic benefits of choosiness? Understand Fisher’s  runaway sexual selection and the Hamilton-Zuk hypothesis.

• the benefit is that preference piggyback on the success of traits in the  individual, and widespread drives the trait to extremes  

• Hamilton-Zuk: mate choice based on traits that indicate heritable disease  resistance  

g. Understand the lek paradox and the ways genetic variability is maintained  in populations.

• Lek Paradox - females choose certain males based on sexual  

characteristics that aren’t directly involved in reproduction

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