The Anvil: Nature vs. Nurture

Peace Chijioke and Fahim Rahman


Among social scientists, the issue of personality development is widely debated. Many argue that it is genetic nature for the way that people develop as people. Many others believe that people’s maturation is a byproduct of the environment that they have grown up in. While the belief that people mature through the effects of their environment cannot be ruled out, the belief that nature is the driving force of maturation has much more evidence.

The genetic code that every individual possesses provides for the development of a person in that it will never change, and people are who they are from the start. The argument that people are born as a clean slate cannot be taken as completely true because right from the get-go, people’s genes already exist and are preset for their development. Why do people act the way they do? What allows for every individual to have different personalities? Genetics answers these questions with the most universal and scientific evidence.

Of course, there is the physical dimension of people’s lives that must be covered. Biogenetics is what explains why each person has the colored eyes, height, hair color, skin color, and even diseases they do. Everyone has the same natural development system, and people by nature have the ability to acquire language, with the exceptions of also naturally produced disorders. It is thus nature that is responsible for how people physically develop. In respect to personality, this natural physical development is the entirety of how people view themselves and each other in their environment. Genes explain personality development in that they provide the code for neural receptors to have coordination and assembly. The organization of these neural receptors is in turn responsible for the development of every individual. The varying amplitudes that these neurons encode information for every individual, the model of the brain controls the thought process as a whole and thus consciousness and the development of thought is a product of every individual’s biological layout.

Another example of how nature controls the personality of an individual is through what is called serotonin. The serotonin in a human is active in creating impulses between nerves and maintaining the cyclic body and mind processes that contribute to people’s happiness. It is for that reason that serotonin is a chemical that regulates the mood of each individual. Therefore, serotonin levels directly contribute to the happiness of each individual. Further if an individual has low serotonin levels, depression and anxiety disorders develop. Personality of individuals is created through the state their mind is in, and this is evidence that it is genetics that is responsible for its development. Perhaps the most influential evidence, is that identical twins whose bodies develop in indistinguishable manners are the most likely to develop the same disorders.

The Anvil - Fahim Rahman - naturevsnurture

In conclusion, although environmental factors do affect an individual’s life it is the genetic and natural build of each individual that creates their personality. The individuality of each person is directly an effect of each person’s body processes. It is nature that is responsible for how people feel at any certain time but also the development of their character.

On the topic of whether nature or nurture plays the greater role in the shaping of personality traits, there must be a considerable amount of deliberation between the two, given the fact that too many exceptions exist, and there are no cases where either is the sole force in shaping identity.


Untitled presentation (2)Nativists claims are typically along lines that uphold the theory of genetic predisposition. This theory in relation to developmental psychology states that characteristics and differences that are not observable at birth emerge later in life as a product of maturation. Nativists argue that cognitive development as a whole emerges in the same way the body undergoes puberty. That is to say, an inner biological clock determines when changes will occur.


Nurturists claim that everyone is essentially born a blank slate and gradually develop their individual characteristics as a result of experience. Nurturists prescribe infant attachment as a result of the love and attention received from their caretakers, rather than the survivalist stands upheld by pro-nature advocates. From the nurturists perspective, learning is the defining factor in developmental psychology.

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Sciences like psychopathology recognize that nature and nurture do not act independently but interact in a complex manner. For example, both genetic predisposition and an appropriate trigger are required for a mental disorder to develop. The question at hand is not whether nature or nurture is chief in development, but rather how much of each result in certain types of personality traits.

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