Drawing on psychoanalysis, philosophy, religion, linguistics, and politics, the authors trace the evolution of human sexual behavior and our complex feelings about sex. A universally appealing subject presented with clarity, creativity, and conviction.--Booklist. Lynn Margulis is a leading evolutonary biologist and Sagan is a writer.
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The mother-son team that brought you Microcosmos: Four Billion Years of Microbial Evolution (1986--not reviewed) now tackle the age-old theme of the origin of sex. Margulis (Biology/U. of Mass. at Amherst) and Sagan (Biospheres, 1990) choose to do this in a particularly florid style, using the image of an androgynous stripteaser who displays facets of sexuality at different ages and stages of evolution. But that's not all. The book is (a) a kind of postfeminist review of all the sociobiological hype of the 70's and 80's. This time, however, instead of crying foul at the macho writers who wrote of breasts and buttocks and pair-bonding and said it made good genetic sense to be promiscuous, to rape, blah-blah, the authors rehash all the old theories with mild caveats that genetic predestination is not destiny. The book is also about (b) the evolution of the penis (and the possibility that size and length may confer the advantage of depositing sperm higher up in the vagina with better chances of reaching an egg than a rival's ``sperm competition''); (c) Freud, the French deconstructivists Lacan and Derrida, and phallic symbolism; (d) neoteny; (e) mating styles of the great and small; (f) the reptilian brain that presumably lives on in all of us; (g) the origin of language and time.... Finally, we learn that the usual explanation that sexual reproduction increases genetic variation, and thus the odds of adapting to changing environments, is not sufficient: cloned or fissioned creatures also differ. The answer then? Sex is an ``unkickable genetic habit''--passed on from the bacteria who knew all about passing genes back and forth, and the protists (like the amoeba) who cannibalized each other to survive. This latter theme is by far the most well developed, drawing upon Margulis's special knowledge and insights into symbiosis in cellular evolution. The rest can be described as flights of fact, fancy, and fantasy with no clear distinction. -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.From Publishers Weekly:
Primeval women's swollen breasts indicated lactation, pregnancy and fertility to excited males. In the author's scenario, women lost their estrus and developed permanently enlarged breasts, "an anatomy of deception," to tame and domesticate exploitative males whose interests were narrowly focused only on mating. Female orgasm, though not necessary for reproduction, may have conferred a survival advantage on prehistoric females, the authors further argue. In like fashion, Margulis and Sagan, coauthors of Microcosmos , use evolutionary biology to illuminate orgasm inequality, phallic worship, sexy clothing, sexual jealousy and violence alleged to be rooted in our far-distant past. This eloquent, stimulating exploration of the roots of human sexuality at times succumbs to reductionism, as when the authors ascribe human dating, honeymooning and marriage to the need to maximize reproduction.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Descrizione libro Summit Books. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. 0671633414 Never Read-may have minor shelf or handling wear and a price sticker on the cover-publishers mark-Good Copy- I ship FAST!. Codice libro della libreria SKU000009212
Descrizione libro Summit Books, 1991. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. First. Codice libro della libreria DADAX0671633414
Descrizione libro Condizione libro: Brand New. Book Condition: Brand New. Codice libro della libreria 97806716334171.0
Descrizione libro Summit Books, 1991. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. book. Codice libro della libreria 0671633414
Descrizione libro Summit Books, 1991. Hardcover. Condizione libro: New. Codice libro della libreria P110671633414