Craig Eric Morris
Craig Eric Morris received his Graduate Certificate in Evolutionary Studies in 2011 and was awarded his doctorate in May 2015 for his dissertation “The Breakup Project: Using Evolutionary Theory to Predict and Interpret Responses to Romantic Relationship Dissolution” after fourteen semesters spent working closely with the EvoS program as student, speaker host, teaching assistant, graduate assistant, Assistant Program Coordinator, Instructor, and invited speaker. Craig is a biocultural anthropologist and evolutionist whose general research interests include anthropological theory, evolutionary medicine, sexuality and gender, and evolutionary sexology.
Craig’s specific research focus has been to improve the understanding and potential treatment of Post-Relationship Grief—the suite of physical and emotional responses, and concurrent behaviors, suffered and expressed by many individuals following the termination of a romantic relationship. Early biological models of human pair bonding have proven insufficient in capturing the full experience of Post-Relationship Grief (PRG). The PRG process is a sophisticated biocultural phenomenon dependent on cultural structures, life history, sexuality, and environmental factors. Therefore, his current research program operates within a novel biocultural model and tests a series of evolutionarily informed predictions that include these biological pair-bond predictions, as well as a more sophisticated set of variables related to multiple cultural, temporal, and sexual ecologies.
By extending the existing model into a new theoretical paradigm, he has addressed multiple relevant research queries through the continuing analyses of 5705 online interviews from participants in 96 countries. This ongoing project was supported by two grants from Binghamton University Evolutionary Studies Programs (EvoS). Thus far, the project has produced three professional presentations, eight invited presentations, one published journal article, two conference posters, a book chapter, and four manuscripts in review that present specific quantitative findings related to biological sex differences, life history variation, and complex sexualities. The large volume of remaining qualitative data will support multiple additional publications regarding the dissolution of romantic relationships as seen through an evolutionary lens.
The next step in the research program will be to investigate the feasibility of an evolutionarily-informed intervention and treatment method for PRG. Strategies for preventing damaging behavior are already apparent in the existing research yet much additional work is required. In addition, an evolutionary interpretation of PRG as a predictable response pattern could lead to counseling/treatment interventions for high-risk individuals and populations.
Craig is pleased to discuss matters related to his teaching, mentoring, research, or the continued growth of the Evolutionary Studies Program and can be reached via email at craig.eric.morris[at]gmail[dot]com.