Self sacrifice and kin psychology in war : threats to family predict decisions to volunteer for a women's paramilitary organization

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Lynch , R , Lummaa , V & Loehr , J 2019 , ' Self sacrifice and kin psychology in war : threats to family predict decisions to volunteer for a women's paramilitary organization ' , Evolution and Human Behavior , vol. 40 , no. 6 , pp. 543-550 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2019.06.001

Title: Self sacrifice and kin psychology in war : threats to family predict decisions to volunteer for a women's paramilitary organization
Author: Lynch, Robert; Lummaa, Virpi; Loehr, John
Contributor organization: Biological stations
Lammi Biological Station
Date: 2019-11
Language: eng
Number of pages: 8
Belongs to series: Evolution and Human Behavior
ISSN: 1090-5138
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.evolhumbehav.2019.06.001
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/316317
Abstract: The conditions that propel humans to make sacrifices for groups of unrelated, and often unknown, individualshas received considerable attention across scientific disciplines. Evolutionary explanations for this type of sa-crifice have focused on how men form strategic coalitions organized around kin networks and reciprocity whenfaced with out-group threats. Few studies, however, have analyzed how women respond to external threats.Using data from one of the largest female paramilitary organizations in history we show that women who havemore brothers, women whose husbands serve in the military and women without children are more likely tovolunteer. These results provide qualified support for the hypothesis that women are more likely to sacrifice fortheir country when members of their family are at risk. Overall, our analysis suggests that self-sacrifice andintense bonding with an imagined community of unknown individuals, such as the nation state, may arise out ofa suite of psychological adaptations designed to facilitate cooperation among kin (i.e. kin psychology). Theseresults can be interpreted within the framework of kin selection showing how individuals come to view un-related group members as family. They may also shed light on various theories of group alignment, such as‘identity fusion’–whereby individuals align their personal identity and interests with those of the group–and onour understanding of evolutionary adaptations that cause women to direct altruism toward in-groups.
Subject: IDENTITY FUSION
Identity fusion
KINSHIP
Kin psychology
Kin selection
Out-group threat vertical bar risk tolerance vertical bar
PAROCHIAL ALTRUISM
Self sacrifice
TIES
WARFARE
515 Psychology
Peer reviewed: Yes
Rights: cc_by_nc_nd
Usage restriction: openAccess
Self-archived version: acceptedVersion


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