Mea Culpa … then more on sex!
First - A Personal Defense
My previous post, Why Women Can’t Enjoy Sex, was originally written in response to an article of the same name. The comment section allowed 300 words and my original response was 296 words long, however my comments must have been deemed “off-topic or abusive”, since it was never published.
But that is why that the content of that post was - deliberately - reductionist. I felt in the limited space available, hyperbolic exaggeration would offer a rhetorical challenge to the author and her readers, and have them consider a different perspective from their ideological and very traditional feminism. My philosophical and personal approach to life is precisely the opposite of reductionism - I continually study alternative explanations and accounts, and find truth about human behaviour has many facets and is an incredibly subtle and nuanced. And I believe any explanation which claims something complex is “nothing more than…” is immediately suspect.
So my own more considered thoughts on the topic of sex, love and marriage are far less simplistic. Having an appreciation for the biological antecedents of human behaviours, and of evolutionary influences, does not mean I believe they are good or right, or that we are necessarily (let alone morally) bound by them. After all, a reductionist evolutionary biology would say weak or sick humans “naturally” succumb to illness, yet my professional life is spent treating such sick humans, and medical science is a magnificent cultural achievement, standing in defiance of the “pure” or “raw” biology of “Mother Nature”.
Evolution tells us nothing about what is right or wrong - only what has offered survival advantages or reproductive advantages across populations and across time. It therefore has to have some relevance to any exploration of modern cultural issues. It is not binding in any sense, but it is best to be aware of biological systems and how they work before we commit ourselves to potentially hazardous behaviours. An example would be benefits of understanding the biology of human ears before embracing prolonged and loud volume use of an ipods with earphones.
Next - A Personal Disclaimer
Now as a male writing about feminism I am always in danger of causing offense where none is intended. And as a non-professional writer I am always in danger of expressing myself unclearly. Particularly when the subject is as emotive as sexism, as complex as biological “roles”, and evolution, or topics with such an enormous weight of cultural “baggage” as the institution of marriage; it is likely impossible not to cause offense.
Sorry in advance. Please, reader, believe my intention is to be fair - though I will admit a bias in favour of protecting and enhancing the opportunities for women (I am, after all, husband to a clever and loving woman, who has much more to offer the world than our children, as well as a father of a multi-talented daughter for whom I desire every wonderful opportunity life can offer).