Can Darwin Explain Being Down in the Dumps?
Jonathan Rottenberg’s The Depths: The Evolutionary Origin of the Depression Epidemic points to a great deal of research suggesting that mild depression has evolutionary advantages. These include increases in problem-solving ability, attention, and the capacity to more realistically appraise certain situations. However, in his review of the book, Irwin Rosenfarb writes, “it was never clear to me how an evolutionary approach could explain severe depression” (para. 6). Can you see any good reasons why severe depression would offer an evolutionary advantage?
By Irwin S. Rosenfarb
PsycCRITIQUES, 2014 Vol 59(44)