Evolution-Based Ethical Challenges Related to Individual Variability



This chapter deals with age variability, sex variability and individual variability in general. In addition to age and sex relations, interpersonal relations in general are addressed. For each of those issues the salient aspects regarding their evolutionary background, recent trends in modernity, and ethical reflections about the future are discussed. Regarding age variability, the discussion considers the accelerated biological growth process and the prolonged social maturation period in the life course, the increased life expectancy at all life stages, and the prolonging of the terminal phase of life. Regarding sex variability, particular attention is given to the specificity of human sexuality, trends in sexual behavioural in modernity, and ethical reflections about relations between the sexes in the future. Regarding individual variability in general, special attention is paid to the importance of the maintenance of variation, the control of maladaptive traits and attributes, and the containment of individualism. Regarding interpersonal relations in general, the dynamics of individual competition and cooperation, and the causes of individual maladapted behaviour are addressed.

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© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Anthropology and Social BiologyGhent UniversityGhentBelgium
  2. 2.Population and Family Study Centre (CBGS), Flemish Scientific InstituteBrusselsBelgium
  3. 3.Population and Social Policy Consultants (PSPC)BrusselsBelgium

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