"The host, Macken Murphy, is able to condense vast chunks of information into engaging and digestible episodes. Fact-filled and fun." — The New York Times
Master of Puppets | Dr. Robert Plomin
1:44:38"DNA isn't all that matters, but it matters more than everything else put together." —Dr. Robert Plomin Blueprint: https://mitpress.mit.edu/9780262039161/blueprint/ Plomin is one of history's most important psychologists and a pioneer in the field of behavioral genetics. He is a research professor at King's College London, best known for his work on twins. In this podcast, Plomin explains how we know that genes impact our behavior, clarifies all the common confusions about the field, and pushes back against some of Macken's criticisms. Enjoy.
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Gossiping for Mates | Dr. Tania Reynolds
1:27:37Women compete vigorously over mates but do so more subtly than men. In this episode, Dr. Tania Reynolds teaches us how women use gossip to win mates. Additionally, we discuss friendship, thinness, and the evolution of homosexuality, among other subjects. Tania Reynolds is an assistant professor of Evolutionary Psychology at the University of New Mexico. Her research examines how intrasexual competition and cooperation contribute to psychological and behavioral sex differences. She investigates how pressures for humans' ancestors to select advantageous social allies—and be selected in return—contribute to modern-day preferences, biases, and behaviors. Connect with Dr. Reynolds on Twitter @TaniaArline, and keep up with her work using the links below: Department webpage: https://psych.unm.edu/people/faculty/profile/tania-reynolds.html Research: https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Tania-Reynolds
22:49This spider, Bagheera kiplingi, prefers a plant-based diet. Come learn about trees that pay ant security guards in gold, The Jungle Book, and an exceptional animal on this episode of Species. Bibliography: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1XSUztDqSZWt1IM_IA9JnkFVqRZ14pd6YHCPQlu2jz4E/edit?usp=sharing
State of Affairs | Dr. Brooke Scelza
57:17Infidelity is almost ubiquitous among the Himba, an indigenous group of pastoralists living in Namibia and Angola. In this episode, I speak with a human behavioral ecologist who can help us understand why. UCLA's Professor Brooke Scelza (@bascelza) has studied reproductive decision-making in these people for about a decade. Her fascinating work has made progress towards understanding the rationale behind patterns of parental investment, fosterage, and infidelity. In this podcast, we focus on the last item on this list. Come learn about an interesting culture and view infidelity through a new lens on this episode of Species.