Archive for the ‘“Love” Contra Social Stability’ Category

The Economics Of Infanticide

There are sound evolutionary reasons for parental solicitude to be selective, discriminating in favour of those offspring that are likely to survive and have viable children of their own. In some social settings, female infanticide is a rational strategy, as male inheritance and polygyny means that sons may obtain wealth, power and reproductive success while […]

To Kill Or Not To Kill Your Daughters

The prevalence of female abortion and infanticide in India and China, especially combined with the return of Chinese concubinage, suggests either that modern human beings lack the instincts to make the correct choice of the sex of their offspring, or we have misunderstood the nature of the game. Other animals seem to adjust the sex […]

We Are SO A Lekking Species

Having analysed the evolution of sexual display in creatures like the pheasant, Matt Ridley asks whether some men are “successful with women because their appearance sends an honest signal of their handicapping good genes and their ability to resist disease?” He dismisses it as ridiculous, on the grounds that “men succeed with women for much […]

Posted on July 26, 2009 at 12:16 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · One Comment
In: AGAINST NATURE, "Love" Contra Social Stability

Bastard Blood Will Out?

In an environment with no contraception, it is said, any genetic predisposition to sexual recklessness may be expected to proliferate. Given our present quite considerable level of sexual recklessness, this suggests one of two things: either our remote ancestors were considerably more prudent and responsible in sexual matters than we are, which might dictate a […]

Lamps And Philtres

A major trope of Western medieval and renaissance literature was the love-philtre. This may be simultaneously an expression and a critique of the distressing randomness of sexual attraction. In the Eros and Psyche legend, the girl was visited by a midnight lover, whom she was condemned never to see. When she lit a lamp in […]

Philtred Confidence

One of the things that everybody knows but that turns out (probably) not to be so after all is that sexual attraction is mediated by airborne pheromones. This is the end of the line for a highly persistent fairy-tale; there is, alas, nothing we can bottle in order to make dweebs into Casanovas. This discovery […]

Posted on August 10, 2009 at 10:24 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: AGAINST NATURE, "Love" Contra Social Stability

The Second Front

One of the things that the cult of Love actually does in human society is to open up a second front of sexual competition. Men no longer have to engage in useful economic activity in order to gain access to women, but can shop directly; this may weaken their incentives to integrate with and produce […]

Posted on August 17, 2009 at 11:47 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: AGAINST NATURE, "Love" Contra Social Stability

Dominica’s Planet

I once watched a young person’s travel programme, of the kind that considers the alcoholic and sexual adventures of the reporter to be of greater interest than the geography, history or culture of the location itself. Something the junketer said suggested that she thought of the tropical paradise as the economist’s equivalent of Perfect Competition. […]

Posted on September 2, 2009 at 11:02 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: AGAINST NATURE, "Love" Contra Social Stability

Amor Vincit Omnia

The notion of “Love”, or responding solely to neurochemical stimuli, serves to dissolve our reservations against winner-takes-all reproduction and uncouple sexuality from participation in the community. It also enables a claim to be above ethics. For there is a strange modern superstition that people “in love” become morally elevated and benevolent. The Ancients knew better, […]

Posted on September 13, 2009 at 09:59 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink · Leave a comment
In: AGAINST NATURE, "Love" Contra Social Stability