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The role of physical activity in the development and function of human juveniles' sex segregation

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Sex segregation during the juvenile period is a pan-cultural phenomenon in humans as well as being observed in many other vertebrate species. In this paper I define sex segregation in human and nonhuman animals and chart its ontogeny in humans from childhood through early adolescence. Second, I argue that sexual selection theory can explain segregation in humans. Third and consistent with this theory I posit that sexual selection effects on segregation are moderated by proximal factors, such as individual differences in activity and ecological factors. Fourth, I suggest possible functions of sex segregation in humans. Lastly and in conclusion, I discuss methodological issues that need addressing in the study of human sex segregation.

Affiliations: 1: Department of Educational Psychology, University of Minnesota, Twin Cities Campus, 56 East River Road, Minneapolis, MN 55455, USA


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