Next Time You Get Caught Cheating, Blame … Science?

Monogamy ain’t for humans, argues evolutionary biologist

By The Editors
April 14, 2016 9:00 am

When 37 million Ashley Madison users were outed last year, people began Googling “Ashley Madison Excuse” to see what others were saying to avoid being banished to the couch for all eternity.

The perfect excuse, as it turns out, was in front of them all along: cheating is human nature.

It’s science.

In his new book Out of Eden, evolutionary biologist David Barash lays out the case that the institution of monogamy — at least in a sexual sense — is not “natural” for either sex. The crux of Barash’s argument is that monogamy is a societal pressure imposed by the Western world that goes against our natural biological inclinations.

“When people of either gender act on their polygamous inclinations while living in a monogamous tradition, they are being unfaithful to their sociocultural commitment, but not to their biology,” he writes.

While he does acknowledge that “biology is not destiny,” Barash points out there have been indications throughout history “that ‘one-man, one-woman’ is an uncomfortable institution for human beings.”

One thing the book won’t do: make sleeping on your friend’s couch any more comfortable.

But at least you’ll have some reading material.

Image via Universal Pictures

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