Monday, November 2, 2009

Implications Post

The answer to the question, “Is this behavior caused by genetics or environment?” is usually “both.” Strong genetic factors do not mean that environment cannot affect the behavior, and strong environmental factors do not mean genetics cannot intervene.

Now you’re probably thinking, “Why the debate?” Well, the nature vs. nurture debate became so contentious in the first place because people were curious and did not know an answer as to how people came to be, personality-wise. It is difficult to say that either nature or nurture shape who we are because both essentially do. However, there are strong proponents of each side who believe that nature or nurture has a stronger influence.

The simple acceptance of the statement that “nature gives us inborn abilities and traits” and nurture “takes these genetic abilities and shapes them as we learn and mature” appears to be the end of the debate. However, it does not stop there. Scientists are still researching to determine exactly how much of human behavior is attributed to genes and how much to environment. It is difficult to say whether or not this debate will ever end because as each day progresses, there will be more discoveries to be made, furthering the debate.

One technological advance furthering the debate is DNA testing. This opens the eyes of many in the nature-nurture debate because evidence reveals connections between a gene and behavior. When a violent gene is coupled with a bad environment, a child may be raised to become aggressive and violent. Supporters of nature attribute this behavior to genetics, since it first initiates the behavior.

The pendulum swings from side to side depending on the era of time. Earlier this century, it swung almost entirely to the nurture side as psychologists performed several studies favoring nurture. Now, since society is heavily technological, the pendulum swings toward the nature side. Like the nature of a pendulum, this debate will most likely keep swinging back and forth until the end of time.

1 comment:

  1. I feel that this blog points at an interesting topic but I must admit it is a little disappointing seeing that the debate will never cease to exist as time goes on. But it is a situation that should be analyzed. I do feel that both can coincide to exist. I believe the argument may stem from theorist of human psychology vs biological psychology.

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