Monday, July 27, 2020

Do you know about the strange phenomenon called "Returning Soldier Effect"?


The phenomenon is that right after a war, returned soldiers tend to father more sons than daughters.



It’s confused scientists for decades and no-one really knows the answer to why this occurs.

Satoshi Kanazawa, an American-born British evolutionary psychologist and writer, came up with two theories:

1) Taller people have more sons.

2) Taller people are more likely to survive war.


He tried to validate his second point. Kanazawa speculated that taller people have roughly the same sized vital organs compared to shorter ones, leaving more space in the body where a bullet can hit without causing fatal damage. 🤔

Dr. Satoshi Kazanawa. Image: http://personal.lse.ac.uk/KANAZAWA/

He also believed that taller people were generally more intelligent than shorter people. [1]


It was also shown that, in Britain after WWI, the men who returned were on average 1 inch taller than those who died. 


Although 1 inch may seem negligible, it would equate to a 5% increase in chance of fathering a boy - and that 5% translates into millions of boys - this would account for all the excess boys being born after the war if height was the correct theory.


Reference:

[1] https://www.discovermagazine.com/the-sciences/why-are-taller-people-more-intelligent

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