Nature vs. nurture

Topics: Nature versus nurture, Human behavior, Biological determinism Pages: 4 (1316 words) Published: April 30, 2014
Nature vs. Nurture
It is a matter of concern whether human behaviors and characteristics are determined by nature or nurture. If a person’s behavior is inherited directly from the genes of his/her parents or other biological factors, then it is the nature that determines his character. But if the environment that a person grew up in, affects his behavior, then it is the nurture that determines his/her character. It became a great matter of controversy among scientists, psychologists and sociologists. Previously, many people believed that human behavior was instinctive. It can neither be taught nor learned. But later some psychologists came to the conclusion that human behavior is learned throughout the lifetime which is not instinctive. I believe that it is the combination of both nature and nurture that determine one’s characteristics. Nature only or nurture only cannot be the determining factors for one’s behavior and characteristic. A person’s behavior is determined by the equal blend of nature and nurture. Brent Staples in his essay “Black Men and Pubic Space” proves that one’s character cannot always be determined by their race which is a biological factor or one’s upbringing and society. But both the nature and the nurture affect the way one behaves, “I grew up one of the good boys, had perhaps a half dozen fistfights. In retrospect, my shyness of combat has clear sources” (Staples 315). Although the society he lived in was not good, he became a good person. It might be because of his behavior inherited from his parents and the good manner he was taught by his parents. So both nature and nurture by his parents work here and the environment of bad people didn’t affect his behavior. However, he once says that “Women are particularly vulnerable to street violence, and young black males are drastically overrepresented among the perpetrators of that violence” (Staples315). This makes the reader little confuse whether he himself is being racist, but he is...

Cited: Staples, Brent. Black Men and Public Space. The Norton Reader: An Anthology of Nonfiction. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. Print
Cunningham, Amy. Why Women Smile. The Norton Reader: An Anthology of Nonfiction. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. Print
Theroux, Paul. Being a Man. The Norton Reader: An Anthology of Nonfiction. New York: W.W. Norton & Company, 2012. Print
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