Votre titre Audible gratuit

Sex at Dawn

How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships
Durée : 10 h et 57 min
5 out of 5 stars (8 notations)
Prix : 22,40 €
9,95 € / mois après 30 jours. Résiliable à tout moment.

Avis de l'équipe

In Sex at Dawn, husband and wife team Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethá have written a book that questions both modern-day standards of human sexual behavior and the scientific history of our early ancestors. The book first explains and defines what it refers to as “the standard narrative”, the story of how humans evolved from our prehistoric ancestors to be monogamous beings with conflicting biological imperatives for males and females. Then, it goes on to refute this narrative, providing evidence from noted modern scholars like Steven Pinker, Malcolm Gladwell, and Frans De Waal, as well as renowned scientists and philosophers like Charles Darwin, Jean-Jacques Rousseau, and Thomas Hobbes.

Ryan and Jethá write, “Science all too often grovels at the feet of the dominant cultural paradigm.” Indeed, one of the most powerful ideas that Sex at Dawn puts forth is that culture has a way of coloring scientific and historical “fact”. Some of the examples given are quite disturbing, especially when large institutions are clearly engaged in cover ups of our true nature. The authors assert that many sexual myths (for example, that masturbation is some kind of medical affliction) have been repeated and disseminated over the years by religious, health, and state organizations. They take a controversial stance that this “cover up” tactic has also been applied to the non-monogamy of our closest primate relatives and early man. They believe that even if non-monogamy is not the dominant mode of being for contemporary humans, at the very least it should be viewed as a historic basis for our desires and behaviors.

The narration, which alternates between Allyson Johnson and Jonathan Davis, is clear and straightforward, particularly well-suited to this kind of book. Johnson especially makes the information, which can sometimes be dense, easily digestible and relatable. One of the authors, Christopher Ryan, reads the preface, which gives a hint of how he came to be interested in exploring the given subject matter. Through this section, we also get a way to connect directly to the authors and thus, the human (as opposed to the scientific) aspect of the issues discussed.

To claim that this work is exclusively or even mostly about sexual behavior would be a stretch. The book is very holistic, tackling bigger-picture issues of science, culture, history, and philosophy. That said, these large ideas are needed as building blocks for the claims the authors make about sex. Another triumph of Sex at Dawn is the attention the authors have given to presenting material on sex as it applies to men and women equally. Along those lines, another high point of the narration is that it echoes this sentiment through the interchanging male and female voices, reminding us that these ideas apply to both sexes in different ways.

What the book posits exactly is somewhat unclear. The authors themselves admit that they're not exactly sure what to do with all the information they have unearthed. That said, the great strength of Sex at Dawn is that it opens the discourse about human sexual behavior sans many of the taboos that traditionally accompany the topic. —Gina Pensiero

Description

Since Darwin's day, we've been told that sexual monogamy comes naturally to our species. Mainstream science - as well as religious and cultural institutions - has maintained that men and women evolved in families in which a man's possessions and protection were exchanged for a woman's fertility and fidelity. But this narrative is collapsing. Fewer and fewer couples are getting married, and divorce rates keep climbing as adultery and flagging libido drag down even seemingly solid marriages.

How can reality be reconciled with the accepted narrative? It can't be, according to renegade thinkers Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha. While debunking almost everything we "know" about sex, they offer a bold alternative explanation in this provocative and brilliant book.

Ryan and Jetha's central contention is that human beings evolved in egalitarian groups that shared food, child care, and, often, sexual partners. Weaving together convergent, frequently overlooked evidence from anthropology, archaeology, primatology, anatomy, and psychosexuality, the authors show how far from human nature monogamy really is. Human beings everywhere and in every era have confronted the same familiar, intimate situations in surprisingly different ways. The authors expose the ancient roots of human sexuality while pointing toward a more optimistic future illuminated by our innate capacities for love, cooperation, and generosity.

BONUS AUDIO: Includes a Preface written and read by author Christopher Ryan.

©2010 Christopher Ryan, Cacilda Jetha (P)2010 Audible, Inc

Critiques

“Funny, witty, and light ... Sex at Dawn is a scandal in the best sense, one that will have you reading the best parts aloud and reassessing your ideas about humanity’s basic urges well after the book is done.” ( Newsweek)
Sex at Dawn is the single most important book about human sexuality since Alfred Kinsey unleashed Sexual Behavior in the Human Male on the American public in 1948.” (Dan Savage)

Autres livres audio du même :

Ce que les membres d'Audible en pensent

Notations

Global

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 étoiles
    7
  • 4 étoiles
    1
  • 3 étoiles
    0
  • 2 étoiles
    0
  • 1 étoile
    0

Performance

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 étoiles
    6
  • 4 étoiles
    0
  • 3 étoiles
    0
  • 2 étoiles
    0
  • 1 étoile
    0

Histoire

  • 5 out of 5 stars
  • 5 étoiles
    5
  • 4 étoiles
    1
  • 3 étoiles
    0
  • 2 étoiles
    0
  • 1 étoile
    0
Trier par :
  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars

bouleversant et fascinant

Ce livre est un bijou précieux. Il devait être traduit en toutes les langues et accessible au plus grand nombre pour relever quelques vérités si essentielles, si inconfortable mais tellement prometteur pour permettre une meilleure compréhension entre hommes et femmes et la vie de couple d’aujourd’hui.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars

best book about sex I've ever read

really well wrote book, light and funny, yet full of scientific facts. I'll advise that book to anyone who is looking for a fresh look on our sexuality, history and psychology

Trier par :
  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Carolyn
  • 18/09/2012

Strawmen and Ad Hominems

This book was somewhat interesting, but certainly nothing new if you know much about human sexuality. I went into reading this book agreeing with their general premise that early human culture probably involved multiple sex partners, not monogamy. That makes logical sense to me and I was looking forward to learning more about it.

However, I found the book majorly bogged down with taking things that disagree with the authors way too personally. Having actually read a lot of the scientific literature they reference in the book, I was quite unimpressed by how egregiously they deliberately misinterpreted it so that they could argue against their misinterpretation. For example, The Selfish Gene says many times that it absolutely does not imply that people or animals are selfish, just that genes are. People (and animals) can absolutely behave non-selfishly, and we do so because that kind of behaviour is better for our genes than selfishness. This book uses the fact that "people" (without ever pointing to an example of such a person) could interpret the title of the book to mean that people must be selfish and so they need to spend ages proving it wrong. It was ridiculous. The things they included in the "standard narrative" were mostly things no scientist would really argue for because they are obviously not true and scientists have known that for decades. Because of that, I doubted a lot of their other details that I'm not as familiar with as well. It seems as though the thing they were trying to disprove - their so-called "standard narrative" - is a combination of outdated, pre-1970s anthropology and misinterpretations of real scientific data.

Honestly, I only finished this book so I could review it. The first half was so full of strawman arguments and flimsy, emotional attempts at persuasion that I nearly stopped listening to it. The second half was somewhat better, but the evidence was nothing new (the sweaty t-shirt test, the difference in which men women are attracted to during ovulation and not during ovulation) and the big points were often "duh" moments. It was clear that the authors felt persecuted somehow by both the scientific community and society at large for their point of view and felt the need to make personal attacks on other scientists and to completely denounce monogamy as an option in order to make their point. It came across as bitter and angry, which really turned me off. If you're a scientist, part of that is criticism. It's how science works - you come up with an idea, you're criticized, you prove it, you're criticized, you refine it, you're disagreed with, and with time the best theory wins out. If you wanted to not face negative reactions to your theory - which is in fact a good one - then make it a religion. If you want it to be generally accepted science, it has to be challenged, tested, and proven before that will happen. Get over it.

I agree with other reviewers that the narration was strange. They should have stuck with one narrator for all of the text or else split it chapter by chapter or something more logical like that.

Overall, I was very disappointed with this book. Even though I agreed with their premise, the arguments were so poorly executed that I lost respect for them. This is a topic more people should know about, but from someone with more ability to be objective and who won't rely less on ad hominem and strawman arguments to make their point.

249 sur 271 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Mark
  • 31/03/2012

too much focus on academic in-fighting

I knew nothing more about evolution, evolutionary psychology, and anthropology than what I learned in high school. I was hoping this book would introduce me to some of the key issues in these fields. It didn't. The authors have what appears to be a counter-establishment theory about early human society. To the extent that they explained and supported it, it seems perfectly plausible. However, without exaggerating, they spend less than 20% of the book articulating their theory. The remainder is them bashing all sort of other theories. Their critiques seem reasonable enough, but listening to academics criticize each other over study methodologies is simply not interesting to someone outside the field. They also adopt a snarky tone about the theories they criticize that makes the whole book seem far more petulant than necessary.

There are two readers. The female reader is great. However, she is periodically interrupted by a male reader reading short passages. On paper, this is a nice idea. There are two authors (male & female) and Audible wants to reflect that by having two readers. But, it just doesn't work in practice. You kinda buy into the idea that this woman is telling you a story. You get into it. Then some disembodied male voice interrupts for a short while. It's really distracting.

107 sur 118 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Joel Mayer
  • 24/09/2011

Good, not great

This book had some good things going for it, but I couldn't bring myself to give it 5 stars. This was a more polemical work than I would have liked. It was very much written in a style to convince the reader/listener of the author's ideas. I honestly got the feeling that they were only giving me the information that supported their thesis rather than a balanced look at facts, or giving honest alternate explanations/ideas. It also made use of "straw man" items where the authors would give an opposing opinion in its worst light and then rather than explain that idea went on to ridicule it.

PROS:
Lots of facts
Unconventional take on human prehistory
Good job of "thinking outside the box" and giving lots of facts/data to back up their ideas
Entertaining, not "dry"

CONS:
Some mentioned above.
Odd use of 2 narrators where 1 narrator read quotes to open each "section/chapter" and maybe a stray sentence here and there. It was really odd to periodically get a different voice for just a few seconds and then back to the usual reader
Too many tongue-in-cheek comments and adolescent humor.
Overly romanticized subsistence hunter-gatherer lifestyle.

Is it worth listening to/reading: Yes...I would recommend it.
Is it a work that contributes to understanding prehistory: Maybe
Is it entertaining? Yes

45 sur 52 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
  • ICE
  • 31/12/2010

interesting if it doesn't annoy you

There is a lot of interesting information in this book, and it is pretty good to listen to. I have two problems with it. One is how the authors constantly summarize and rephrase scientific information in a very glib and slang way, in fact rather mis-stating what they are trying to explain. I guess this is for common appeal? It comes off as disingenuous and often as judgmental. Second, this is one of those books in which the authors say that common beliefs on their subject are wrong and they are going to prove them wrong by presenting and supporting their new thesis on the subject. But they spend a ton of time saying how their new idea that they're going to share disproves the common idea, and very little time actually sharing, explaining and supporting their new idea. They continually say how they disagree with "the standard narrative", that it is wrong. And then spend hours of the book explaining and supporting the standard narrative--much more time than they explain what their new and different idea is. I kept thinking, OK, here's the part where they are going to say why this is wrong and tell me what is right... But you kind of keep waiting. If you are not paying close attention you end up taking in the standard narrative as the information the authors are trying to get across, and not as what they are trying to disprove. They sort of shoot themselves in the foot on that. Even when they present their differing idea its not very well supported.

80 sur 98 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Garth
  • 05/07/2012

A scientific veil over popular culture.

What could have made this a 4 or 5-star listening experience for you?

The book contains some interesting information and is well written, but it is primarily just another response to cultural trends. The authors are unendingly critical of earlier scientists, participants in the "standard model", because they were so dominated by their Victorian culture. They then proceed to reinterpret everything through the dark glass of their own culture. Obviously, the book is far more supportive of open sexual relations, women's sexuality and a host of currently popular notions. I am not critical of their opinions, but the thin guise of scientific credibility is disappointing. As with all anthrepological work, it is riddled with unverifiable supposition and assumptions, presented without caveats. There is a fair amount of work cited, but no consideration for the credibility or motivation behind the cited work and no contrary studies are considered. A great deal of time is spent on the genetic and biological driving forces behind sex, but the issues they are contending with are equally, if not more, driven by culture, which is just as real and just as valid. If you are looking for a justification for a choice of lifestyle, this book will offer you any excuse you need, but if you are looking for objective science and understanding, keep looking. It is not to be found here.

37 sur 45 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • D. H. Paull
  • 02/01/2019

How many times can you say the same thing over?

Give it a listen to find out.

The book has about 10 minutes of total content repeated over and over. They are trying to show a central thesis, but they do so poorly, with no real evidence, but with a lot of speculation and conjecture. Saying things over and over doesn't make them true. I really wish they had been able to support their theories because I tend to agree with them, but it reads like a few hours of go-ogling and a week of late-night, stream-of-consciousness, MDMA-fueled writing. Maybe that last descriptor isn't fair.

In any case, I couldn't listen past the 4th hour, so maybe it gets better after that, but take the phrase that made me stop listening... "many evolutionary psychologists and other researchers seem to think that love and sex are interchangeable terms, and they throw together copulating and mating as well." what?! they didn't even do a cursory search to see if this statement holds any water at all. Or they did and went with it anyway because it sounds like evidence that they read the literature. Ugh, why pretend this is researched at more than a college English paper level? Maybe I'll give bump it to a college Psychology of Human Sexuality class B-level term paper.

2 sur 2 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Gare&Sophia
  • 09/12/2012

Excellent, accessible, thought provoking

The controversy in the reviews of this book speaks to its importance. As a committed Darwinian, who has been having a tryst with Lamarck-ism since the advent of epi-genetics, this book was a delight. It takes apart the accepted dogma on a variety of post Darwin science by examining the religious and cultural bias that is built into many of these theories.

I have read all of Dawkin's & E.O. Wilson's books, the modern scholar series on evolutionary psychology, and about 10 other popular texts from this emerging field.

This book stands out, not because of the excellence of its scholarship, but because of the depth of its skepticism and the author's willingness to challenge existing dogma.

At regular intervals, despite my habitual eschewing of scientific mirth, this book had me in aesthetic. I highly recommend this book, and I offer my personal thanks to the authors and the narrator.

Gare Henderson

26 sur 36 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Brian
  • 24/01/2011

Couldn't get through it

I went into this with high expectations, based on reader and critic reviews, and was sorely disappointed. The central premise is intriguing, but the authors to little more than pick apart older models of human sexuality, with little hard scientific evidence. I may be biased since I'm a laboratory scientist, and am skeptical of sweeping conclusions drawn from scant unambiguous data.
If you're an academic studying social sciences or human sexuality, you may find this interesting, otherwise don't bother. The writing is dry and jargon filled, the narration is downright awful, and the attempts to make it accessible to the general reader amount to petty and flat sarcasm.

39 sur 55 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    1 out of 5 stars
  • William
  • 29/10/2012

Truly underwhelmed

Would you try another book from Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha and/or the narrators?

Never.

What could Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jetha have done to make this a more enjoyable book for you?

The quality of the writing was just exceptionally poor. Every paragraph was finished with a pseudo-witty tag line ("Way to go boys." "Now we're talking.") that sounded like the authors really wished the book could have been a snappy Cosmo article instead. It made for tedious listening.

What didn’t you like about the narrators’s performance?

The authors seemed exceptionally pleased with their own wit.

What reaction did this book spark in you? Anger, sadness, disappointment?

Annoyance. The authors' claim (that lifelong monogamy is NOT genetically encoded in al humans for millions of years) is utterly non-controversial in both science and culture today. Nonetheless, the authors pretend that pretty much everyone believes the opposite. They proceed to restate the opposite case in the most extreme and laughable terms (drawing on sources back to the 19th century for evidence of current thought). Having stated the other side in laughable terms, they never actually bother to prove their own case; they simply mock the other side and then list any evidence available for their own perspective without delving into any of the complexities of teasing out something as subtle as sexuality from the archeological and anthropological record.

Any additional comments?

Looking back, I suspect I bought this book because it had sex in the title. Having read it, I now feel a little dirty and ashamed for taking part in such a shallow enterprise.

36 sur 51 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    4 out of 5 stars
  • ovb
  • 07/02/2013

Nice, enjoyed it but one point of view

What made the experience of listening to Sex at Dawn the most enjoyable?

It give a nice overview of the topic from a different view
Although not all "evidence" is not as solide as the present it.

and f the evidens not suite it is ignore or twiste

regardless it is a great listen and i enjoyed this audiobook a lot

i read an other reviewer "good but not great" i follow him/her in the review.

but good is good enough for me ... it was not boring nor trying to convince you (too hard)

Recommended

5 sur 7 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

Trier par :
  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Matty
  • 02/05/2016

another version of the truth

ok here we got a big collection of alternative views on history, science etc lots of truth and doing away with everyday make believe stuff. often not easy to mentally diguest I think thats mostly because even though the performance is professionally well done, it to my ears sounds very dry and made me often really sleepy. still good stuff though

2 sur 2 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Mannfred Flach
  • 22/12/2018

Life changing

Wow this is one of the most important books I've read in my life. This opens my world up to an alternative reality than I was always told by society and therefore allows me to reevaluate some decisions in my life like how and with whom I want to live and have sex with. Must read.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Erotikon
  • 30/12/2016

One More Challenge

The authors excel in reasoning their thesis, why both female and male humans are promiscuous. However, although they mention regularly their antithesis, that the vast majority of humans have been living in monogamic marriages since the invention of farming, they hardly spend a word on why we do this. Only once they have explored our fears of starving and being exploited which we try to overcome by fidelity, the authors will have prepared the grounds for the synthesis, how we can enjoy both honoring our promiscous nature while feeling secure in our modern world. I look forward to it.

  • Global
    1 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    2 out of 5 stars
  • Histoire
    2 out of 5 stars
  • benjamin
  • 08/04/2018

für ein geschichtsreferat gut geeignet

nach dem 4. kapitel geht es immernoch um die gesellschaft, evolution und pauschalisierungen. was war nochmal das ursprüngliche thema? achja, ein besseres sexleben! thema verfehlt, 6.

1 sur 4 personne(s) ont trouvé cet avis utile.