Evolutionary Psychology: Neuroscience Perspectives concerning Human Behavior and Experience: Neuroscience Perspectives Concerning Human Behavior and Experience

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SAGE, Jan 17, 2012 - Psychology - 512 pages
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Many books in evolutionary psychology emphasize just a small part of the total picture. Evolutionary Psychology gives students a clear understanding of how current psychological knowledge of human behavior and experience draws from a variety of perspectives. It begins with an understanding of evolution and the close connection between organisms and their environment. It provides the student the basics necessary to see how the environment and the turning on and off of genes can influence humans and the cultures in which they live. The book shows that we solve certain problems of life as many species have done for years. It also shows a glimpse of human abilities not seen in other species. We use language. We purposely teach our children. We build large cities that survive long after a single generation. We create cultures that through their writings and art can influence other humans thousands of years later. Current research in social processes, decision making, and brain imaging is presented in a clear manner throughout the book. The book emphasizes developmental processes and family relationships, sexual and social relationships, as well as emotionality and language. The book concludes by applying an evolutionary understanding approach to examine the areas of health and disease, psychopathology, and culture.

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Introduction and Background
1 Introduction to an Evolutionary Perspective
2 What Is Evolution?
3 Genetic Perspectives
Basic Human Function and Process
4 Evolution of Brain and Function
5 Developmental Aspects
6 Emotionality
11 Social Relations
12 Making Social Decisions
13 Health
14 Psychopathology
15 Culture

7 Language
8 Sex and Gender
9 Sexual Selection
10 Kin and Family Relationships

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About the author (2012)

William J. Ray is a Professor of Psychology at Penn State University. He received his PhD from Vanderbilt University and was a Fellow in Medical Psychology at the University of California Medical Center in San Francisco. He received his undergraduate degree from Eckerd College, where he learned about the value of primary sources and the need to integrate information from a number of perspectives. As part of his clinical training, he has worked in a number of mental hospitals and clinics across the country, where he developed an appreciation of the experiences of those with mental disorders. In his career, he has served as a visiting professor and researcher at the University of Hawaii, Münster University, University of Rome, Tübingen University, and Konstanz University. At Penn State, he is currently the Director of the SCAN (Specialization in Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience) program and was previously the Director of the Clinical Psychology Program. His research has focused on approaching clinical questions from a neuroscience perspective. He has used psychophysiological and brain imaging techniques such as EEG, MEG, DTI, and fMRI to study emotionality, psychopathology, and individual differences. These studies can be found in numerous articles, book chapters, and books. His work has been published in such journals as Science, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Journal of Neuroscience, Psychophysiology, Physiological Reviews, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Developmental Psychology, Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Cognitive Brain Research, Biological Psychology, NeuroImage, and Clinical Neurophysiology. This work has been funded by both national and international agencies including NIH, NIMH, NASA, NATO, and the DAAD. In addition to research, teaching has been an important part of his career. His textbooks include Methods Toward a Psychology of Behavior and Experience, Psychophysiological Methods (with Robert Stern & Karen Quigley), and Evolutionary Psychology: Neuroscience Perspectives Concerning Human Behavior and Experience.

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