Can evolutionary principles help us explain behavioural differences between men and women, and if so, to what degree?

Historians and philosophers of science engaged in evolutionary thinking, along with several evolutionary biologists, are sometimes suspicious of two purportedly scientific disciplines: evolutionary psychology and sociobiology.  Since the “scientific status” of these disciplines is, in particular, a favorite issue for many of us at The Bubble Chamber, it seemed appropriate to make it the topic of our first “debatable” post.  The post itself grows out of material recently taught by Vivien Hamilton in one of her courses at Toronto’s IHPST.  The idea behind “debatable” posts is that we will outline a contestable topic that readers will carry forward in the comments section; so please, feel obliged to take issue with anything in this post that you disagree with, and to address any aspect of the issues raised, in the comments section.…