Enough With the ‘Slut Gene’ Already: Behaviors Ain’t Traits | Wired Science | Wired.com

When considering the behavioral evolution, we best view a trait as a sort of broad inclination — and behaviors as actions rising from those inclinations. Traits (from this evo perspective) exist because they’re selected for over long stretches of time, while behaviors rise as their current, context-sensitive expressions.

So curiosity (aka “novelty-seeking”) is a trait, and if you’re a curious type you might express that in behaviors ranging from reading a book or inventing the wheel to riding a skateboard off a skyscraper — or, to put it all in one basket, exploring a new valley and discovering either death or a rich new hunting ground.

Some of these actions are obviously more adaptive than others — but any or all might rise (partly) from a single trait. Their form depends on context and personal history; and both their value and form depend on what other traits you have. If you’re curious but sensitive to signs of danger, you’re more likely to survive your trip into that valley. (Get as metaphorical with that one as you like. As useful in marriage as in hunting.)

via Enough With the ‘Slut Gene’ Already: Behaviors Ain’t Traits | Wired Science | Wired.com.

Good points and consistent with my own theory, as specified in the utility function models.

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