Nature vs. Nurture: Impulsive Violence

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For me the nature versus nurture argument debates the reasoning behind our actions. By this I mean that we are trying to find a way to determine whether our actions are based on the environment we are raised in or the genes that we inherit. The reason why I find this concept to be so important is because if we are able to determine the causation of our actions then we may be able to alter certain actions, particularly harmful ones of people. An example of this is we might be able to lower crime rates or at least understand why people commit crimes. For example, in one study researchers looked at the presence of MAOA-L in subjects which is believed to be related to impulsive violence. In these studies they tested patients with clean medical records in order to determine their proneness to impulsive violence. From their finding they were able to determine that particularly in males, the presence MAOA-L led to an increase in the likelihood that the person would be impulsively violent. This is because that the MAOA-L gene leads individuals to have increased amygdala activity and reduced regulating amygdala activity. This is significant because the amygdala is responsible for fear and anger which means that individuals with the MAOA-L gene are indeed more prone to impulsive violence. This leads me to question as to whether or not nature is truly the primary cause behind violence rather than nurture.

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This page contains a single entry by bowl0071 published on October 2, 2011 8:57 PM.

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