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Sex at Dusk: Lifting the Shiny Wrapping from Sex at Dawn Paperback – July 14, 2012
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Top Customer Reviews
However, most of Dusk is simply a reiteration of the standard narrative and even at times a dogmatic upholding of tradition, even going so far as to imply that monogamy is how societies advance. Perhaps so, but this is obviously not the fair, balanced take on the subject of human evolution that I had hoped for.
It took me a week to read Dawn and two months to read Dusk because Saxon's writing style is a little tough to read. I would need to re-read whole paragraphs a number of times to get at the heart of the matter, and often the arguments were non-linear, disconnected, or poorly and falsely interpreted. A number of her arguments actually bolster Ryan's case and an even greater number prove nothing in either direction, though much of the discussion is quite relevant and effective to her goals. At the very least, all of the subject matter is interesting -- it's sex, after all!
My big problem is with the straw man she evokes, saying Dawn promotes everyone sleeping with everyone or old men sleeping with young women in incestuous groups (p. 308). It's an unfair portrayal of Ryan's social-bonding hypothesis and utter disregard for the social and emotional architecture that men and women own. She immerses her rebuttal in biology, rather than sociality, where Ryan's thesis lives, thus missing the point entirely.Read more ›
Dawn strikes me as a pop science book for a scientific theory that hasn't been scientifically argued yet. Dawn argues against a straw man version of the "standard narrative", without ever explaining why the "standard narrative" is standard. Dawn scoffs at ideas about "mixed strategies", without explaining what that means. Evolutionary biology is not a simple subject, and Dawn glosses over a lot of the complexities that get in the way of its arguments.
Sex at Dusk does a much better job of keeping its political motivations from interfering with making a scientific argument - though there are still some clear political motivations. Dawn comes from the perspective of sex-positive feminism, and is promoting polyamory (an agenda I agree with). Dusk comes from the feminist view that men and women are different, but that women should still be respected as women.
Dusk really lays bare how Dawn takes quotes out of context, and misrepresents the views of various academics. By the end, I don't think I can really trust anything Ryan or Jetha say. Some of the misrepresentations were so blatant they blew me away.Read more ›
Unfortunately, Saxon’s work is tedious and repetitive. The worst part of it is that I cannot even tell you what her primary thesis is, other than “Ryan and Jetha are wrong.” No, actually, even that’s not it, because much of Saxon’s documentation supports the material in Sex At Dawn. She give myriad examples of the absence of monogamy in human and animal groups around the world.
Saxon claims that Sex At Dawn is “bad science” and she feels compelled to disabuse us all of the perceived fallacies therein. Where Ryan and Jetha suggest that human behavior is generally more sexual, like the bonobo, rather than violent like the chimpanzee, Saxon takes offense; she argues instead that humans are more like chimps, or more like gorillas, or occasionally more like baboons, but not possibly like bonobos. Ryan and Jetha’s thesis that monogamy may not be the only legitimate (let alone historically ideal) relationship form, Saxon denies it on the grounds that only a monogamous pair-bond of the sort ubiquitously adhered to in every hunter-gatherer society in all of human history could have built the peaceful, harmonious western civilization in which we live.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
It's telling that most of the reviews are either 5 stars or 1 star. I have not only read 'Dawn' and 'Dusk' but read many lengthy debates on various forums and comment sections... Read morePublished 3 months ago by Ethan Ford
Much better than "Sex at Dawn," which was idiotic. Dusk actually had some scientific basis for it's theories. Thanks Ms. Read morePublished 9 months ago by Sara
Thoughtful and well sourced, the author argues the science and only the science. Evolution is often misunderstood and misused. Read morePublished 12 months ago by daveworld4000
In 2010 Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethà published "Sex at Dawn," which presented some evidence for our multi-mating past, with the implication that monogamy isn't... Read morePublished 15 months ago by books4parents
If you read Sex at Dawn, I recommend you also read this rebuttal. The author does a good job of undermining many of Ryan's points, and a thorough job of undermining his... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Peter Cyrus
My eyes are open now. The most important and groundbreaking book I've read in years.Published 19 months ago by Mimi
Terrible book. Why was this written? Oh, yeah. To ride the coattails of a successful author, promote a Biblical bias, and crush the facts that SEX AT DAWN--an excellent... Read morePublished 22 months ago by Zalmorion the Fantastic
Sex at Dusk: Lifting the Shiny Wrapping from Sex at Dawn
Doubts are abundant here
Writer unknown. Scientific credentials impossible to verify. Read more
I enjoyed the book. I think the author step by step demolishes the arguments laid out in Sex At Dawn. Read morePublished on May 16, 2014 by Patrick Herget