Friday, October 23, 2009

Literature and Evolutionary Psychology - An Objection

I had a recent email discussion with a fellow scholar who argued against using evolutionary psychology to understand the actions of Shakespeare's characters on the grounds that Shakespeare couldn't have put in something he didn't know about. The problem with this is that if evolutionary psychology accurately describes human behavior, then Shakespeare doesn't have to have known anything about it to nonetheless use it. I think this may be one of the main errors theorists make in their objection to using things like evolutionary theory and psychology.

Oddly. that never stopped many scholars from using Freudian and Lacanian psychoanalysis, though.
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