How children invented humanity : the role of development in human evolution

Oxford University Press

Author Bjorklund, David F.
Description xi, 376 pages
Bibliography Includes bibliographical references and index.
ISBN 9780190066864
Subject Evolutionary psychology., Human evolution., Children, Developmental psychology., Child development., Child psychology.
Location Main Library Adult
Status Available


"Infants and children are the often-ignored heroes when it comes to understanding human evolution. Evolutionary pressures acted upon the young of our ancestors more powerfully than on adults. Changes over the course of development in our ancestors were primarily responsible for the species and the people we have become. This book takes an evolutionary developmental perspective, emphasizing that developmental plasticity - the ability to change our physical and psychological selves early in life - is the creative force in evolution, with natural selection serving primarily as the Grim Reaper, or a filter, eliminating novel developmental outcomes that did not benefit the survival of those individuals that possessed them, while letting the more successful outcomes through. Over generations as embryos, infants, and children continued to change and to produce slightly different adults, a new species was born - Homo sapiens. This book is about becoming - of becoming human and of becoming mature adults"--