The Science: Human beings are not a monogamous species. But don't just trust me on that. Head to the experts. Dr. David Barash explains, "We are not naturally monogamous." It doesn't get any more clear than that. Read his piece, "The Myth of Monogamy" or his book by the same title that he wrote with Judith Eve Lipton. Even the animals we have long thought were monogamous—swans, for example—aren't. Somebody must be out there providing fodder for the researchers.
All of that aside, in the end, it's not a matter of natural or unnatural, right or wrong, evolved or not so evolved, smart or dumb, provable or unable to be proved. The question remains: is it workable?
For some, yes. Quite well by the looks of things. But for others, no. Not at all. With divorce rates remaining in the 50% range, I can't help but wonder why we cling to this model that everyone likes to talk about but far fewer people follow. If your child came home with 50% on every test, wouldn't you talk to the teacher about other methods of study? Perhaps it is time for other methods of marriage…
I don't have any problem with the practice of monogamy. It's the people who are all talk and no action (or in this case, I suppose, too much action) that make it difficult for me to believe that it is as universal as many would like to believe.
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