[LMB] OT: Genetics & Culture

Matthew George matt.msg at gmail.com
Tue Nov 14 19:40:03 GMT 2017

And conscious change requires both perception (which is to a very large
degree moderated by biology) and motivation (ditto).

People once argued, within living memory, that human beings possessed no
instincts and were 'blank slates' from birth.  Then the number of actual,
pre-programmed responses that were demonstrably present and documented
crept up.  It's now acknowledged that while biology may not be destiny,
it's a whole heck of a lot.

There are many, many cases where environment can stunt development, but
cannot improve it - once the basic requirements are all present,
development is *entirely* the result of biology.  You can make children
dumber by poisoning them or depriving them of stimuli, but you can't
improve them that way.  There's evidence with rats that you can actually
cause impairment by providing a too-rich environment.

Matt G.

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