Discuss the Relationship Between Sexual Selection and Human Reproductive Behaviour

2168 Words Mar 29th, 2012 9 Pages
There are many theories that try to explain relationships between sexual selection and human reproductive behaviour. Evolutionary theory is one such theory.
There are many different species in the world which, according to Darwin, all came from one source, e.g. a bacteria or organism. Within each species, natural variation occurs, therefore the individual beings within the specie look different from one another. These differences are caused by genetic makeup (50% from your mum, 50% from your dad). There are some genes like down-syndrome that get switched on when combined with other genes. Some genes can also undergo mutation- a random change (e.g. being born with six fingers, instead of five). Most mutations are harmful, for example
…show more content…
As females can only produce a few eggs, and one child a year for about twenty-five years, females have to be very careful and make the right selection with their choice because their egg is so much more valuable. Natural selection therefore encourages females to favour: careful mate choices, monogamy, high parental investment-how much you will look after your child and courtship- getting to know the mate. Natural selection also encourages females to seek males who display genetic fitness- strength, status and resources. Clark and Hatfield (1989) did some research which had attractive strangers approach people at a university campus and invite them back to have casual sex at their apartment. Results showed 0% of females agreed, but 75% of males agreed. This shows natural selection has high face validity as the research supports the theory where women are pickier when choosing a mate, whereas men don’t really care who they have sex with.
In reproductive behaviour, mate choice plays a key role, our mate choices are formed in the “environment of evolutionary adaptiveness”. These built-in preferences are important because the genetic quality of your mate will be responsible for half the genetic quality of your offspring, therefore a high-quality choice of mate is likely to lead to your genes being passed on. The faces people find attractive are consistent- even across cultures. Langlois et al (1987) found that babies under 1 year prefer to

Related Documents