FAQs about Evolutionary Feminism

Q: What evolutionary pressure was behind this shift in pre-human primate behavior?

A: What evolutionary pressure was behind this shift in pre-human primate behavior?

In some chimpanzee cultures, the female copulates with all male members of the group; some evolutionary psychologists believe that this behavior was promoted by the belief that the males would be confused into thinking that any progeny produced could be theirs, and this would prevent infanticide - the male behavior that kills a women's children to eliminate the possibility of raising another's man's child [cuckold] as a waste of reproductive energy. This infanticide occurs assuming that the current male mate has been defeated in some way (like violent death) and the replacement male now considers the female as his "property."

Killing the child would also forces the female into estrus sooner as she would no longer be nursing the child, and the hormore change would push her back into estrous again, and the new male would then be certain that any new progeny belonged to him. The theory continues that the female somehow came to understand that there "was a better way" then copulating with the entire group and reducing sexual access competition by the other males.

The theory believes that the female "granted" sexual access in return for protection, support and commitment - and more gentle behavior -- from the male. Thus, the nuclear family unit was born.

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