Born that way? The role of socialization in the genetics of aggression

Monday, November 04, 2013

S. Alexandra Burt

Associate Professor of Psychology
Michigan State University

A wealth of empirical research has revealed that physical aggression 1) is one of the most stable traits in the human behavioral repertoire, 2) usually onsets early in life, and 3) evidences unusually high levels of heritability. Do these results imply that interventions aimed at eradicating physical aggression are doomed to fail? It turns out that the answer is a resounding no – such work actually has a great deal of promise. I will discuss the origins of human aggression, highlighting the roles of development, socialization, genetics, and evolution.

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