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Is Monogamy Natural for Humans?

By Meg Barker, The Guardian - July 30, 2013

There has been a good deal of press coverage surrounding a research study that addressed the question of how human monogamy came about, from an evolutionary perspective. This suggested that males in monogamous mammal species remain with female partners to protect their families from other males, who would otherwise kill the young and mate with the females.

This is no doubt an interesting study, as is other recent evolutionary research highlighting how unusual monogamy is across animal species (reported in the book Sex at Dawn). However, more interesting to me is the focus of such research – and the journalists who report it. If we are genuinely interested in human monogamy, I wonder why our main focus is how it evolved in animals.

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