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Warrior Lovers: Erotic Fiction, Evolution and Female Sexuality
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Top Customer Reviews
If you're familiar with the works of Steven Pinker, David Buss, or Margo Wilson and Martin Daly, then much of the content of WL will be familiar, but I suspect you will never have read the arguments rendered with such cohesion and clarity. This is the work of a man (Donald Symons) who has spent the previous four decades of his life contemplating human mating behavior, teaching and writing about it, and brings it all together in this tightly-written summary.
The book also addresses the phenomenon of "slash fiction," a subgenre of fan fiction, both heavily dominated by women, in the same way that graphic pornography is heavily dominated by men. Symons and Catherine Salmon (now a professor of psychology at the University of Redlands) place slash fiction within the realm of human cognition shaped by evolution, showing that it is congruent with other forms of sexual behavior explored in Symons' classic The Evolution of Human Sexuality and in much of evolutionarily-framed cognitive research since then.
If you're interested in reading a thoughtful discussion of the nature and origins of cognitive differences between men and women, this concise book should prove illuminating. It's an easy read, and a good one.
One partner in most slash pairings is not habitually feminised, slash fiction does not always take place between two males who are close friends in the canon source material, such stories need not be set within the context of a loving, monogamous relationship, and lesbians do not just read and write femslash -- plenty of them enjoy male/male pairings! Those are just a few examples of completely wrong-headed generalisations made by the authors.
This book simply reeks of misogyny and gender essentialism. If you're already a slash fan, you'll be able to see it, but if you're not, please do not use this as a guide to the psychology behind slash fiction.
Catherine Salmon and Donald Symons take this quite seriously as a window into women's minds. Just as typical pornographic books and films reveal a lot about what men fantasize about, slash fiction, together with the better known romantic fiction, reveal as much about what women fantasize about. They take a fully neo-darwinist view of this, rejecting the standard view of many social scientists that there is no inborn difference at all between men's and women's minds, any difference that we think we see being entirely the result of environment and conditioning. For Salmon and Symons this standard view is nonsense, and for them the differences between men's and women's minds are real and have their origins in the evolutionary history of humanity. As they point out, commercial producers of men-oriented pornography and women-oriented romantic fiction (which at the time of writing was generating an annual income of about 5 billion dollars in the USA) are well aware of what sells and what does not, and, whatever maybe people's motivation for reading high-grade literature, such as the novels of Jane Austen, it can hardly be supposed that people buy pornography or romantic fiction for any reason other than that that is what they like.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This was gift from a friend, a fellow fan of my favourite manga, From Eroica With Love, which is mentioned in the book. Read morePublished on February 1, 2011 by Anne-Li
A wonderful new coinage appeared a few years ago, and it is so appropriate to this book that I have added it as a tag; "mansplain. Read morePublished on May 30, 2009 by ProbablePossible