dufou010: September 2011 Archives

The debate of nature vs. nurture has been going on for years, is very controversial, and will probably never come to a straight forward conclusion. The question is whether our intelligence, personality, and behavior should be attributed to genetics or to environmental factors and learning.
Psychologists originally believed that almost all traits were due to learning and experience, but throughout the years, views have changed. Genetic psychology, behavioral genetics, and evolutionary psychology all study this great debate and attempt to find answers. It is widely known that BOTH nature and nurture play huge roles in our personality and behavior, but the controversy is how much each of them comes into play.
Behavior genetics has shown that intelligence, personality traits, and general interests are based largely on genetics. Of course, we've also seen that the environment an individual grows up in affects them greatly as well. Adoption studies, family studies, and twin studies help us continue to find out more about nature vs. nurture.
The following article, titled "Identical Strangers" is about a study that was conducted on twins separated at birth. As the title suggests, the twins were extremely similar, proving that genetics is a key factor in psychological traits and behavior. The twins were separated and raised in completely different families and environments, and they reunited at age 35 to find they were very similar. They have had different experiences in their lives, of course, but their interests and personalities were so alike it was uncanny. "It's not just our taste in music or books; it goes beyond that. In her, I see the same basic personality. And yet, eventually we had to realize that we're different people with different life histories" (Joe Richmond).


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