We know authors portray libertarian societies as monogamous with a side of polygamy and polyamory, but there are other types of long-term relationships. For example the m+n/f LTR, where one woman has multiple husbands (defined as polyandry). How does this all work in a free society? Was Heinlein ahead of his time or a dirty old man?
A libertarian society would see these types of LTRs, which do occur throughout human history and also in the animal kingdom. Let’s talk about a hypothetical future with an emphasis on polyandry, as the main character in Armageddon’s Princess, Lexus, starts out with four husbands while she is the only wife. My world-building research, not simply amusement, contributed to the speculative validity of her (libertarian) marriage.
This is a three-part series:
- Human Sexual Behavior 101
- The Present: Doom, Doom, & More Doom
- A Libertarian Future: Monogamy, Polyamory, Polyandry & Polygamy
To understand how polyandry and other relationships that end in “y” work in humans, let’s define human behaviors outside of gender-relational wishful thinking. In other words, jettison current Western Feminism Dogma for the false-dichotomy it is and deal with facts.
Yeah, I went there.
The Basics of Human Sexuality Without Dogmatic Politically Correct BS
We can divide this discussion right along the sexes: the male imperative and the female imperative.
The Male Imperative
The male imperative is blazingly obvious but modern men and women both attempt to ignore or marginalize it. Sperm is not just cheap, biologically speaking, its way cheap. Sperm is so plentiful a human male will jettison the excess through masturbation.
A human male is good to go when he can find a female willing to engage in intercourse. The more attractive the male is, the more females he can engage to deposit his genetic material into. All men a woman finds attractive can, through the pair-bounding process, create a monogamous relationship where the female is only interested in engaging sex with him despite her feminine imperative.
They call it making love for a reason. A woman attracted to a man gets “high” off a dopamine response. During intercourse, if the man brings the woman to climax, not only will she receive genetic material, she receives an oxytocin punch to her neural response system.
Literally, the male is drugging his mate with love, a one-two punch and the foundation of the pair-bounding process. If backed by cultural reinforcement, the pair-bonding process also creates monogamy and life-time mating.
Why discuss the mechanics of sex specifically impacting women? In the men’s section?
That’s the male imperative. To have sex. We’ll come back to this later.
The Female Imperative
The female imperative is hypergamy.
Hypergamy is the biological feminine drive to mate and secure commitment from a man whose relative attractiveness to her is higher than her own attractiveness. In different words, mate selection is the genetic drive to produce the best offspring she can.
Not only is this feminine imperative, but a duality inherent in all women. They seek sex and commitment. A man can impregnate a woman with little biological commitment. A woman, however, once impregnated, not only consumes more resources than when not, but she is also “spending” her body in a nine month pregnancy followed by, by modern standards, eighteen years of child-raising commitment.
A woman lies on her back, spreads her legs and offers a man her sex: this is a biological offer for a man to ride in the ultimate luxury car. It could be a short ride or the ride of his life, but for a woman sex is an impending biological sacrifice on an epic scale.
This sacrifice is so foundational to a woman’s make up hypergamy is akin to a woman breathing and an undeniable sexual drive rooted in life and death. Without hypergamy a woman could invest her entire life and offspring to a sub-standard male of lower genetic status. Not too long ago, mating with the wrong man meant death.
Many say bad things about hypergamy, but biology doesn’t care. Many also define hypergamy as “marrying up.” That is a simplistic definition of the female imperative.
Hypergamy is the biological force in a woman which dramatically reduces her chance of getting knocked up by a douche-bag who cannot provide for her and her offspring nor keep them safe. She snaps her legs closed. She does not offer the man a ride in her Lexus. She tells him to go pork a Pinto.
Strong as the female imperative is, it is not wishful thinking to recognize the pair-bonding process will dampen a woman’s drive to replace one man with a better one, as long as her current mate remains attractive to her. Making love is a giant, orgasmic sex drug for a woman (and men, but that’s a different story) and can turn her into a slut. She is a monogamous slut only for her man because of her biological drive, as long as she perceives qualities in him which are better than her own. Hypergamy, pervasive that she is, actually sets the conditions for pair-bonding and long-term relationships.
But what hypergamy giveth, hypergamny taketh away. As soon as her mate ceases to be attractive to her, all bets are off. Hypergamy kicks in, and with a vengeance. Remember, the woman is deciding to make a life-altering biological change. Why would she make babies with someone she isn’t attracted to and repulsed by? This directly translates to DON’T HAVE SEX. This DON’T HAVE SEX bit has many names. The Friend Zone. Divorce. Serial Monogamy. I Love You But I Am Not In Love With You™. Whatever you call it, thy name is legion:
Hypergamy. The feminine imperative.
Biology Doesn’t Care
We’ve talked about love but only from a biological standpoint in the pair-bounding process. I didn’t talk about romantic love because biology doesn’t care. Biology doesn’t care about a lot of things and coupled with that factoid this post serves as the foundation for understanding human sexuality. This seems simple and is simple. Humans are highly adaptive. Genetics root this species specific trait in cold-hard reality.
Let’s go over some examples. One classic misunderstood example is birth control.
Mr. and Mrs. Biology Scoff at Your Scientific Advancements
A woman can choose when to get pregnant. This ushered in a sexual revolution, right?
Wrong. Evolutionary biology doesn’t care about birth control, at least not yet. All sex, for a woman’s brain, is make-a-baby-sex. All. If she has sex while ovulating the female brain goes “We’re making a baby! Yeah!” Before ovulation, her brain goes “Wooooo! Give me some of this white stuff because it sticks around for five days!” So-on-and-so-forth.
The emotional response to sex is not the body saying, “Well, this is sex and I’m ovulating, but because I have a diaphragm in, I won’t get pregnant. Let’s not pair-bound, Ms. Body, either, despite the fact I’ve had three orgasms and this guy is hot, because I’m still working on my B.A.”
A woman’s hormonal system will care she is on the pill. Behavior traits based on millions of years of sexuality don’t.
Let’s talk about the other side of the coin, men.
Mr. and Mrs. Biology Don’t Give Rip if You Think Objectification is Bad
Today, many tell men to not objectify women because that’s sexist and ultimately misogynistic. Objectification, they say, is the moral basis for patriarchal systems and everything bad in men.
Despite evidence of evolutionary traits men find attractive, somehow a man must ignore the massive amounts of testosterone in his body (as compared to a woman) and the theory of evolution and not objectify a woman he just met?
Ignoring women also initially objectify men they desire, for men, the pair-bounding process replaces objectivity with idealistic notions of romance and love (much more so for men than women!). Yet somehow initial attraction, wanting (not necessarily doing but simply wanting) sex with nubile Katie without getting to know her is bad.
Biology doesn’t care. Biology doesn’t care about the “unfairness” of Katie’s long legs and big boobs while Sally is an A cup and therefore men should appreciate Sally just as much as Katie. It’s not supposed to be fair. It’s the male imperative. If a woman thinks this is bad, that’s her problem. Not his.
I end this post with a rational examination of sex-attributed behaviors and not a moralistic approach because in the next, we’ll expose all the dirty laundry. My mantra as we look at the current state before moving to a future state of monogamy, polyandry and polygamy roots itself in this notion:
The human brain is a meat computer. Emotions and feelings are tangible things running around a brain like software. Evolutionary biology is the runtime basis defining how the brain runs these programs.
No sacred cow will be safe in the next post of this series. Hold on to yer butts. Despite the looming negativity, keep in mind libertarianism is a positive endeavor in almost all things.
Libertarian Sexuality, Part 1: Human Sexual Behavior 101, first appeared in Who Said Pixies Are Rational Creatures? in April 2013. For more information on Anthony Pacheco and his books, please visit his website.