Addis Ethiopia Weblog

Ethiopia's World / የኢትዮጵያ ዓለም

When Men Shouldn’t be in Want of a Wife

Posted by addisethiopia / አዲስ ኢትዮጵያ on February 23, 2010


SOME couples come together for love, others for money, pregnancy or because they’re told to. Whatever the reason, socially prescribed monogamy and its ultimate cultural expression, marriage, may have emerged because of the evolutionary benefits that both offer.

By providing men with increased assurance that their wives’ children are their true heirs and women with the confidence that their kids will benefit from a decent inheritance, monogamous marriage is a win-win situation, argue Laura Fortunato at University College London and Marco Archetti at Harvard University.

Their view challenges theories of marriage that emphasise the role of religion and the societal benefits of keeping men from fighting over women. Such theories also contend that by giving up multiple wives or partners, men sacrifice their interests for those of the group.

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