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Heredity involves the genes that are passed on to an offspring from parents. Additionally, though, the expression of those inherited genes may be altered by environment. One particular environment may present an opportunity for an individual to have certain experiences. “Experiences act by altering the activity of genes” (Kalat, 2016, p.107). “The result of an experience […] in some way alters the chemical environment within a cell” (Kalat, 2016, p.107) and “various experiences can turn a gene on or off” (Kalat, 2016, p.107). If I understand correctly, the presence of an inherited gene is only the potential for the gene to be active or inactive and experience is another necessary ingredient.
I believe I inherited my mother’s tendency toward high emotional sensitivity. I also believe she inherited this from her father and he from his mother. I feel this expression was further encouraged by my home environment where I could easily and without realizing offend and upset my mother (and generally be punished for it). If I perceived an offense against me at school and came home and told my mother, I was encouraged to cry and “let it out” instead of reasoning through what the true circumstances may have been or what my role was in the event. Perhaps if my environment had been one of more reason and logic than emotion, I may have been less emotionally fragile despite heredity of sensitivity.
Heredity And Environment
Length: 1 pages (330 Words)
Heredity and Environment
It is true that the environment plays a huge role in our development as human beings; our characteristics are indeed influenced by what we have experienced rather than our genetic makeup. Kalat says that the experience alters the chemical composition outside the cell, therefore, altering the genetic makeup of the individual through experience. The genetic makeup of an individual may not be able to express themselves depending on the environment. It is, therefore, true that our environment influences our behaviour and characteristics.