11 J.L. & Pol'y 687 (2002-2003)
Evolution, Child Abuse and the Constitution

handle is hein.journals/jlawp11 and id is 693 raw text is: EVOLUTION, CHILD ABUSE AND THE
CONSTITUTION
Christopher Marlborough*
INTRODUCTION
The presence of a non-genetic parent in a child's home is the
largest single risk factor for severe child maltreatment yet
discovered.' Professor Owen Jones has used the example of
stepparent infanticide to explain how evolutionary analysis in law
can serve society's goals when prevailing theories have failed.2
* Brooklyn Law School Class of 2003; B.A., State University of New
York at Purchase, 1991. I would like to thank Professors Jennifer Rosato and
Bailey Kuklin for their input and guidance in writing this note and my lovely
wife Jennifer for her infinite patience.
' MARTIN DALY & MARGO WILSON, THE TRUTH ABOUT CINDERELLA: A
DARWINIAN VIEW OF PARENTAL LOVE 7 (1998) [hereinafter DALY & WILSON,
CINDERELLA].
2 Owen Jones, Evolutionary Analysis in Law: An Introduction and
Application to Child Abuse, 75 N.C. L. REv. 1117 (1997) [hereinafter Jones,
Child Abuse]. Professor Jones suggests a four-stage process to determine when
evolutionary principles can be helpful to inform legal policy. Id. at 1158.
First, [tihe Identification Stage frames the subject to analyze it. It clarifies
one's legal goal with respect to a law-relevant of human behavior and assesses
the likelihood that evolutionary analysis can aid in the pursuit of that goal.
Id. at 1157-58. Second, [tihe Information Stage uncovers and organizes new
information on the multiple causes of the defined behavior. It describes how
one can explore evolutionary theories, examine the evidence bearing on their
falsifiable predictions, and assess the fit between the theory and the available
evidence. Id. at 1158. Third, [t]he Integration Stage describes how to
expose true conflicts between evolutionary and prevailing theories and how to
integrate the best parts of each into a comprehensive understanding of the
behavior, generate new legal strategies for pursuing pre-articulated legal
goals, improve the cost-benefit analyses that often drive various legal policies,

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