the liver and the brain

dan michaels feedbackdroids at
Mon Sep 6 11:18:34 EST 2004

Wolf Kirchmeir <wwolfkir at> wrote in message news:<9_N_c.3087$lP4.237873 at>...
> dan michaels wrote:
> [...]
> > This N.v.N thing is obviously a spectrum, with a lot of animals down
> > on the nature/instinct end, and a general trend towards greater
> > importance of nurture on the other end. If you look at it this way, it
> > seems a waste of time to argue absolutes of "nature vs nurture",
> > rather it seems more fruitful to figure out about where on the
> > spectrum various animals would lie. In addition, you probably need
> > several such spectrums, or scales, in order to cover different
> > attributes ... motor, perceptual, etc ... as there is no doubt some
> > differential placement regards each.
> > 
> [...]
> "Spectrum" assumes that nature vs nurture makes sense, nevertheless, and 
> to that extent it's a misleading metaphor. It assume sthat for any given 
> trait "nature" or "nurture" must be the prime cause. A moment's thought 
> should make it clear that the real question is not whether nature or 
> nurture "produced" (another question-begging word) a given trait, but 
> just how nature and nurture _interacted_ in this case.
> Etc.

Basically that's what the "spectrum" ordering means. Points inbetween
the endpoints are a mixture. I'm sure that very few organisms, past
possibly the insect stage, are purely nature [ie,
genetic/instinctual], and I'm equally certain that humans are nowheres
being purely nurture [not even close]. Whereas, it seems to me most
people argue for a "preponderance" of one or the other, rather than
the mixture. Isn't that why they call the argument nature "versus"
nurture. I mostly find the "one-sided" arguments rather silly.

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