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Revenge without redundancy: Functional outcomes do not require discrete adaptations for vengeance or forgiveness

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2012

Colin Holbrook
Affiliation:
Center for Behavior, Evolution, and Culture and Department of Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1553. cholbrook01@ucla.eduhttp://cholbrook01.bol.ucla.edu/dfessler@anthro.ucla.eduhttp://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/anthro/faculty/fessler/mgervais@ucla.eduhttp://www.anthro.ucla.edu/people/grad-pages?lid=4411
Daniel M. T. Fessler
Affiliation:
Center for Behavior, Evolution, and Culture and Department of Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1553. cholbrook01@ucla.eduhttp://cholbrook01.bol.ucla.edu/dfessler@anthro.ucla.eduhttp://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/anthro/faculty/fessler/mgervais@ucla.eduhttp://www.anthro.ucla.edu/people/grad-pages?lid=4411
Matthew M. Gervais
Affiliation:
Center for Behavior, Evolution, and Culture and Department of Anthropology, University of California, Los Angeles, Los Angeles, CA 90095-1553. cholbrook01@ucla.eduhttp://cholbrook01.bol.ucla.edu/dfessler@anthro.ucla.eduhttp://www.sscnet.ucla.edu/anthro/faculty/fessler/mgervais@ucla.eduhttp://www.anthro.ucla.edu/people/grad-pages?lid=4411

Abstract

We question whether the postulated revenge and forgiveness systems constitute true adaptations. Revenge and forgiveness are the products of multiple motivational systems and capacities, many of which did not exclusively evolve to support deterrence. Anger is more aptly construed as an adaptation that organizes independent mechanisms to deter transgressors than as the mediator of a distinct revenge adaptation.

Type
Open Peer Commentary
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2013

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References

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