A Contingently Lekking Species

Homo sapiens has in his repertoire a little of all the animal reproductive patterns, and which one comes to the fullest flower at any given time and place seems to be dictated by “culture”, that lazy shorthand of humanities graduates for learned adaptation to ecological conditions.

When reproductive competition is divorced from female access to economic resources, as many people believe to be a good and right development, then we become a lekking species and the intensity of male display increases drastically. Now, leks are an exception to the general rule of the animal world that economic resources and access to copulations go hand in hand. In a lekking species, the males gather to display their fitness and the females visit to observe, choose and mate. The females find their own food, rear their own young and obtain nothing from the males except such genes as the competition has demonstrated to be the finest.

The question is, however, what displayed qualities emancipated human females consider to be symptomatic of the finest genes, and whether this judgment is suited to the nature of modern civilised life. In other words, when they no longer need a boring old “good provider”, whom then do they fancy? The answer is probably not adaptive for the species as a whole, but evolution has no known mechanism for retreating from a path once taken.

Posted on September 10, 2012 at 09:14 by Hugo Grinebiter · Permalink
In: WHAT WOMEN WANT, All The Nice Girls Love An Arsehole

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