About the book
Evolutionary Psychology based on Charles Darwin's research aims to understand how human behavior, thought and feeling are the result of internal psychological mechanisms produced by natural selection. Although this approach is applicable to any being with a nervous system, evolutionary psychology focuses its research mainly on human behavior. Just as human physiology and evolutionary physiology have worked to identify physical adaptations of the body that represent "human physiological nature", the aim of evolutionary psychology is to identify evolved emotional, cognitive, and social adaptations that represent "human psychological nature".
The fundamental research areas of Evolutionary Psychology can be divided into two broad categories: on the one hand, the basic cognitive processes, and the way they evolved within the species, and on the other, the adaptive social behaviors that derive from the theory of evolution itself: survival, mating, parenting, family and kinship, interactions with non-parents and cultural evolution. Indeed, Evolutionary Psychology explains at individual and group level the fundamental behaviors of social life, such as altruism, cooperation, competition, social exclusion, social support, etc. etc. Similar to the mechanisms of natural selection for physical characteristics, not only the mind follows biological laws, but also psychological abilities - such as the theory of mind, the ability to represent the intentions, thoughts, beliefs, and emotions of others - have had to adapt and must make themselves functional to the social life of individuals and groups. In addition, Sociology takes the same aspects into consideration, emphasizing the interaction, symbolic and otherwise, of individuals. The latter investigates the neural mechanisms underlying the same social behaviors that are of interest to evolutionary psychology. To study the neural correlates involved in such behaviors is necessary to understand the biological laws that underlie human behavior and brain functioning.
This book aims to open a debate full of theoretical and experimental contributions among the different disciplines in social research, psychology, neuroscience, sociology, useful to give an innovative vision to the present research and future perspective on the topic.