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Evolutionary Psychology on Niches - Dictionary of Arguments

Corr I 267
Niches/evolutionary psychology: Wilson (1994(1)) and Figueredo (1995)(2) have suggested that the diversification of individual traits to fit different social niches might be ultimately due to frequency-dependent selection. In this view, social competition drives individuals into different social niches and filling these diverse niches offers partial release from competitive pressure from conspecifics. In support of this view, Figueredo (see also Figueredo, Sefcek, Vasquez et al. 2005(3); Figueredo and King 2001(4)) observed that the variation in personality reported in the non-human animal literature appears to be almost exclusively a characteristic of social species; applying concepts from behavioural ecology suggests that intraspecific ‘niche-splitting’ leads to intraspecific ‘character displacement’.


1. Wilson, D. S. 1994. Adaptive genetic variation and human evolutionary psychology, Ethology and Sociobiology 15: 219–35
2. Figueredo, A. J. 1995. The evolution of individual differences. Paper delivered at Jane Goodall Institute ChimpanZoo Annual Conference, Tucson, Arizona
3. Figueredo, A. J., Sefcek, J. A., Vasquez, G., Brumbach, B. H., King, J. E. and Jacobs, W. J. 2005. Evolutionary personality psychology, in D. M. Buss (ed.), Handbook of evolutionary psychology, pp. 851–77. Hoboken, NJ: Wiley
4. Figueredo, A. J. and King, J. E. 2001. The evolution of individual differences. Paper delivered at Evolution and Individual Differences Symposium, Annual Meeting of the Human Behaviour and Evolution Society, London


Aurelio José Figueredo, Paul Gladden, Geneva Vásquez, Pedro Sofio, Abril Wolf and Daniel Nelson Jones, “Evolutionary theories of personality”, in: Corr, Ph. J. & Matthews, G. (eds.) 2009. The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology. New York: Cambridge University Press


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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
Evolutionary Psychology
Corr I
Philip J. Corr
Gerald Matthews
The Cambridge Handbook of Personality Psychology New York 2009

Corr II
Philip J. Corr (Ed.)
Personality and Individual Differences - Revisiting the classical studies Singapore, Washington DC, Melbourne 2018


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