Global Problems of Population Growth

Yale Course , Spring 2009 , Prof. Robert Wyman

Lecture 1: Evolution of Sex and Reproductive Strategies

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Lecture Details :

Global Problems of Population Growth (MCDB 150)

Reproduction is not simple or easy, nor is it fair. Females often bear a larger reproductive burden of child bearing and child rearing. Reproductive strategies can be simplified into two primary strategies for males and two for females: males often either engage in sperm competition or physical competition while females strategize to get resources from males, or to find the best male genes for the offspring. Rape and violence, as reproductive strategies, occur in few species, but violence is especially prevalent among the great apes, probably because eggs are so scarce in these species. In orangutans, rape is common. For gorillas, infanticide is a common form of reproductive violence, and male chimpanzees regularly fight each other and batter females.

Complete course materials are available at the Open Yale Courses website: http://open.yale.edu/courses

This course was recorded in Spring 2009.

Course Description :

Evolution of Sex and Reproductive Strategies - Sex and Violence Among the Apes - From Ape to Human - When Humans Were Scarce - Why Is Africa Different? - Malthusian Times - Demographic Transition in Europe; Mortality Decline - Demographic Transition in Europe; Fertility Decline - Demographic Transition in Europe - Quantitative Aspects - Low Fertility in Developed Countries (Guest Lecture by Michael Teitelbaum) - Human and Environmental Impacts - Fertility Attitudes and Practices - Demographic Transition in Developing Countries - Female Disadvantage - Population in Traditional China - Population in Modern China - Economic Impact of Population Growth - Economic Motivations for Fertility - Teen Sexuality and Teen Pregnancy - Global Demography of Abortion - Media and the Fertility Transition in Developing Countries (Guest Lecture by William Ryerson) - Biology and History of Abortion - Population and the Environment

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