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A Natural History of Rape: Biological Bases of Sexual Coercion

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

In this controversial book, Randy Thornhill and Craig Palmer use evolutionary biology to explain the causes of rape and to recommend new approaches to its prevention. According to Thornhill and Palmer, evolved adaptation of some sort gives rise to rape; the main evolutionary question is whether rape is an adaptation itself or a by-product of other adaptations. Regardless of the answer, Thornhill and Palmer note, rape circumvents a central feature of women's reproductive strategy: mate choice. This is a primary reason why rape is devastating to its victims, especially young women. Thornhill and Palmer address, and claim to demolish scientifically, many myths about rape bred by social science theory over the past twenty-five years. The popular contention that rapists are not motivated by sexual desire is, they argue, scientifically inaccurate.

Although they argue that rape is biological, Thornhill and Palmer do not view it as inevitable. Their recommendations for rape prevention include teaching young males not to rape, punishing rape more severely, and studying the effectiveness of "chemical castration." They also recommend that young women consider the biological causes of rape when making decisions about dress, appearance, and social activities. Rape could cease to exist, they argue, only in a society knowledgeable about its evolutionary causes.

The book includes a useful summary of evolutionary theory and a comparison of evolutionary biology's and social science's explanations of human behavior. The authors argue for the greater explanatory power and practical usefulness of evolutionary biology. The book is sure to stir up discussion both on the specific topic of rape and on the larger issues of how we understand and influence human behavior.

Synopsis:

A biologist and an anthropologist use evolutionary biology to explain the causes and inform the prevention of rape.

Synopsis:

In this controversial book, Randy Thornhill and Craig Palmer use evolutionary biology to explain the causes of rape and to recommend new approaches to its prevention. According to Thornhill and Palmer, evolved adaptation of some sort gives rise to rape; the main evolutionary question is whether rape is an adaptation itself or a by-product of other adaptations. Thornhill and Palmer address, and claim to demolish scientifically, many myths about rape bred by social science theory over the past 25 years. The popular contention that rapists are not motivated by sexual desire is, they argue, scientifically inaccurate. The book also includes a useful summary of evolutionary theory and a comparison of evolutionary biology's and social science's explanations of human behavior.

About the Author

Randy Thornhill is Regents' Professor and Professor of Biology at theUniversity of New Mexico.Craig T. Palmer is Instructor ofAnthropology at the University of Colorado.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780262700832
Subtitle:
Biological Bases of Sexual Coercion
Author:
Thornhill, Randy
Author:
Palmer, Craig T.
Publisher:
A Bradford Book
Location:
Cambridge, Mass.
Subject:
General
Subject:
Criminology
Subject:
Physiological Psychology
Subject:
Rape
Subject:
Violence
Subject:
Human evolution
Subject:
Life Sciences - Evolution - Human
Subject:
Ethics
Subject:
Crime-Criminology
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Series:
A Natural History of Rape
Series Volume:
vol. VII, no 87.
Publication Date:
20010223
Binding:
Paperback
Grade Level:
from 17
Language:
English
Illustrations:
Y
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects

Health and Self-Help » Abuse » Professional Reference
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Anatomy and Physiology
Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Professional Medical Reference
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » General
Health and Self-Help » Sexuality » General
History and Social Science » Crime » Criminology
History and Social Science » Economics » General
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » General
History and Social Science » Gender Studies » Womens Studies
Science and Mathematics » Biology » Evolution
Science and Mathematics » Biology » General

A Natural History of Rape: Biological Bases of Sexual Coercion New Trade Paper
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$30.25 In Stock
Product details 272 pages Bradford Book - English 9780262700832 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , A biologist and an anthropologist use evolutionary biology to explain the causes and inform the prevention of rape.
"Synopsis" by , In this controversial book, Randy Thornhill and Craig Palmer use evolutionary biology to explain the causes of rape and to recommend new approaches to its prevention. According to Thornhill and Palmer, evolved adaptation of some sort gives rise to rape; the main evolutionary question is whether rape is an adaptation itself or a by-product of other adaptations. Thornhill and Palmer address, and claim to demolish scientifically, many myths about rape bred by social science theory over the past 25 years. The popular contention that rapists are not motivated by sexual desire is, they argue, scientifically inaccurate. The book also includes a useful summary of evolutionary theory and a comparison of evolutionary biology's and social science's explanations of human behavior.
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