Functional Analysis

Once a species-wide evolved trait or sex difference is identified, its biological function can be investigated. This is attempted by determining which other species possess the same trait and pinpointing the crucial difference between these species and those that lack the trait. For example, M. Ember and Ember (1979) analyzed the function of marriage by showing that its analog in animals, pair bonding, occurs in birds and mammals in which the mother's need for food interferes with care of her young. Marriage thus serves to keep the father close by so as to aid in raising the offspring. Functional analysis is not mere guesswork; hypotheses must be tested, and are discon-firmed if the distribution of the trait proves inconsistent with the hypothesized explanation. In the case of a human trait, its function in ancestral hunter-gatherer society must be identified because our contemporary genetic program is essentially a throwback to that era. An evolved trait may no longer be adaptive in a modern environment. The study of function—the "why" question about a species-wide behavior or sex difference—provides an entirely different level of explanation from analysis of how and when the behavior develops (Weisfeld, 1982).

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

If Pregnancy Is Something That Frightens You, It's Time To Convert Your Fear Into Joy. Ready To Give Birth To A Child? Is The New Status Hitting Your State Of Mind? Are You Still Scared To Undergo All The Pain That Your Best Friend Underwent Just A Few Days Back? Not Convinced With The Answers Given By The Experts?

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