Inbreedingdepression Theory

See INCEST TABOO THEORIES.

INCENTIVE THEORY. See MOTIVATION, THEORIES OF; REINFORCEMENT THEORY.

INCEST TABOO THEORIES. The notion of incest, that is, the law/custom in all societies prohibiting sex and marriage between members of the "nuclear family" (the basic family unit consisting of a mother and father with their immediate children) is embedded in a universal principle/practice that is difficult, typically, to explain. However, the following incest taboo theories have been offered to explain the phenomenon: the functional theory - holds that the taboo creates and maintains networks of social relationships that are necessary to prevent societies from disintegrating into separate nuclear families; this theory is based on the debatable assumption that without the incest taboo, people would normally want to mate with close relatives; also, this theory fails to account for reasons why the taboo governs sexual intercourse rather than marriage; the inbreeding-depress-ion theory -states that the practice of inbreeding results in the genetic deterioration and elimination of any society allowing it because deleterious recessive genes are more likely to flourish, and the taboo may have evolved via the principle of natural selection; however, this viewpoint does not answer the questions as to why few infrahuman animals demonstrate incest taboos and why some successful human societies have an explicit obligation to marry cousins; and the prepubertal interaction theory -this conjecture is based on empirical psychological evidence that intimate contact between children at a critical period (approximately 2-6 years of age) before puberty results in the elimination of sexual attraction between them in their adulthood. See also DARWIN'S EVOLUTION THEORY; GALTON'S LAWS; MENDEL'S LAWS/ PRINCIPLES; NATURAL SELECTION, LAW OF; PSY-CHOPATHOLOGY, THEORIES OF. REFERENCES

Westermarck, E. A. (1889/1921). The history of human marriage. Helsingfors, Finland: Erenakell/London: Mac-millan.

Westermarck, E. A. (1906). The origin and development of moral ideas. London: Macmillan.

INCLUSIVENESS, LAW OF. See GESTALT THEORY/LAWS.

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