Wednesday, February 24, 2010
Highly intelligent people are more likely to exhibit social values and religious and political preferences that are novel to the human species
Specifically, liberalism and atheism, and for men (but not women), preference for sexual exclusivity correlate with higher intelligence. The study advances a new theory to explain why people form particular preferences and values. The theory suggests that more intelligent people are more likely than less intelligent people to adopt evolutionarily novel preferences and values, but intelligence does not correlate with preferences and values that are old enough to have been shaped by evolution over millions of years. Evolutionarily novel preferences and values are those that humans are not biologically designed to have and our ancestors probably did not possess. In contrast, those that our ancestors had for millions of years are evolutionarily familiar.