Sunday, February 04, 2007

Anti-social Behaviour - In the Genes?

A study released by American scientists holds wider implications for social inclusion programmes and the study of group anti-social behaviour problems.

The research has found that anti-social traits such as being argumentative, bullying and lying, are often inherited. The new research challenges the scientific consensus that difficult children are the product of disruptive homes and are copying parents’ behaviour.

Any question of free will goes out of the window and the uncomfortable message here which is bound to be challenged, may be, that government can spend increasingly more money attempting to solve anti-social behaviour but among closely related family groups which display acute problems, a particular inherited gene sequence may perpetuate and spread generational pockets of anti-social behaviour, quite regardless of any proactive attempt to solve the problem on the part of society.

It's in the genes


Anonymous said...

Sort of stating the bleedin obvious to anyone who lives next to an estate then?

Anonymous said...

I dont buy this one at all. Whilst there may be a genetic propensity there is more than enough evidence from years of research by social psychologists to indicate that 'nurture' is the predominant influence here and not 'nature'. The insights revealed by programmes like 'Super Nanny' should be enough to debunk the argument that a yob is a yob because of his genes!

DrMoores said...

This is perhaps why the conclusions of this research appear so worrying. If it is shown to be correct then we are into the realm of eugenics and the movie 'Gattica'. It's also conjures up the spectre of Prof. Eyesenck's controversial theories of intelligence. Ultimately and as the genetic code is better understood the evidence will become more concrete and while most of us would prefer the idea of free will and nurture what will the world look like if we are shown to be victims of our own genetic programming I wonder?