9/22/2011

Sex at Dawn

Enjoying beautiful Toronto!
Sex at Dawn is a fantastic new book out that examines human nature, and human sexuality more specifically, in a whole new way. What they find is truly remarkable, and rightly turns the field of research and study in this area totally on its head! Namely, that the classic narrative we are all taught or assume, that human beings are monogamous by nature, is totally false. The book is written in a fantastically easy to engage manner: witty, breezy, intelligent, funny, and above all else, deeply insightful. One great thing about this book in addition to the extremely fascinating information it contains, is the discussion and analysis of the concept known as confirmation bias. Which is basically the process of finding what you want to find or expect to find, as a result of one's own personal views and experiences. Or more accurately in this case, one's own social environment and conditioning. Anyway, I can not recommend it highly enough, hard to imagine any human not finding something about this brilliant work interesting or relevant to your life! 

Here is one particularly hilarious passage that I thought might give a good taste of the style the book is written in:


"[Regarding the hit song, "When a Man Loves a Woman"] What does it have to say about a man's love for a woman? What are the signs of true masculine love? Copyright restrictions won't allow us to quote the song's lyric in full, but most readers know the words by heart anyway. To review, when a man loves a woman:
  • He becomes obsessed and can't think of anything else.
  • He'll exchange anything, even the world, for her company.
  • He's blind to any fault she may have, and will abandon even his closest friend if that friends tries to warn him about her.
  • He'll spend all his money trying to hold her attention.
  • And last but not least, he'll sleep in the rain if she tells him to.
We'd like to suggest an alternative title for this song: "When a Man Becomes Pathologically Obsessed and Sacrifices All Self-Respect and Dignity by Making a Complete Ass of Himself (and Losing the Woman Anyway Because Really, Who Wants a Boyfriend Who Sleeps Out in the Rain Because Someone Told Him To?)."

Not your average human sexuality/psychology fare, eh? It's great stuff, do yourself a favor and check it out!
 

3 comments:

  1. Thanks for your very kind review. Honestly, some people found our tone adolescent and irritating, so it's always nice to hear from someone who doesn't think serious discussions need to always be serious. Best of luck to you, at the poker table and everywhere else.

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  2. Hi Christopher! You are very welcome. As you can see by the rest of my blog posts, this subject matter isn't exactly my standard fare here, (as if to further highlight how awkwardly it fits in with the rest of my posts, I randomly inserted a photo of myself on a sight-seeing tour in Toronto...I dunno) but I felt very much indebted to your book and was compelled to write something.

    As I said above the book is both extremely fun to read, while also being quite informative. That in and of itself is no small feat! However it was your discussion on confirmation bias and more specifically viewing all of history and theory through eyes and a brain conditioned and blurred by the society within which we are currently living, that compelled me to write something.

    I can say right now that your discussion on this concept has stuck with me and hopefully will make me a better thinker. As with any profound idea, it is still ruminating, but over time I am confident that I will be a much wiser thinker as a result of the thoughts that were first planted in me by reading this book.

    As a student of economics and libertarian political philosophy specifically, I think I had the tendency to assert such statements like "all humans are motivated by self-interest" based on what I see around me and have known of this property-rights dependent world. Your work gave me a much needed reminder of the true scope and range of humanity, and a good dose of humility as a thinker as well. As I said, the lessons learned from your book in this regard are still just beginning to take root, but I am deeply grateful for the seeds of wisdom I have been exposed to as a result of your work!

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  3. I will definitely give that a read. I'm on the same wavelength and enjoyd that excerpt. Nice one Rob!

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