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Revenge without redundancy: Functional outcomes do not require discrete adaptations for vengeance or forgiveness

  • Colin Holbrook (a1), Daniel M. T. Fessler (a1) and Matthew M. Gervais (a1)

We question whether the postulated revenge and forgiveness systems constitute true adaptations. Revenge and forgiveness are the products of multiple motivational systems and capacities, many of which did not exclusively evolve to support deterrence. Anger is more aptly construed as an adaptation that organizes independent mechanisms to deter transgressors than as the mediator of a distinct revenge adaptation.

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Behavioral and Brain Sciences
  • ISSN: 0140-525X
  • EISSN: 1469-1825
  • URL: /core/journals/behavioral-and-brain-sciences
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