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Old 10-11-2016, 10:35 PM   #7
Nebby. Back into the bag.
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Originally Posted by Emi View Post
Not really a disagreement per say, but I feel that this is more of a cultural phenomenon than it is related to polygamy or monogamy. Think back just a hundred years ago and it wasn't uncommon, especially in rural area, for a family to be monogamous but have eight, nine, ten or more children. I know for my great-great-grandmother (who if I remember correctly, was born just around the end of WWI) and my great-great grandfather who was a little older were born into quite large families. By the time they had kids themselves, they had lived through both the Great Depression and World War II. Those two events were a pretty significant cultural shift for America, and it was during that time if not a little after that the model of what we consider normal for monogamy: two parents and 2-4 kids.

This is not to say polygamous relationships won't have more kids, but I would chalk it up more to cultural changes and other things like birth control. But that's just me, really, and you made good points otherwise.
I considered this. But I think the proof is in the imperial pudding. If you look to ancient China (and its relatives, Korea, Japan, etc.), it was not uncommon for the Emperor to have 20+ concubines and to have numerous children with each of them. It's here where the power of multiplication really shines through: no one woman could possibly hope to birth 80 children in one human lifetime (given all we understand today of human longevity), and yet a man dispensing his seed all around the court can easily father 80 kids in just under five years.

I forgot to mention another historic (and resurgent) benefit to monogamy and other forms of dedicated sexual partnership -- and that's STDs. Or rather, not STDs. People who practice monogamy are categorically less likely to contract and spread STDs. If your partner is clean and you are clean, you both stay clean for life. If your partner is somehow infected (BUT HOW!? ;p), you catch the infection but the buck stops there with you. The only way that STDs can really spread in any given community is if the people catching them then go on to have sex with other members of the community who have yet to catch them. In other words, if a subset of your polyamorists are also shitbags. Which is not a difficult supposition to make. "Humans: what a bunch of bastards!"

You can think of this STD problem in relation to Abrahamic marital customs the same way you can think of food-borne illnesses in relation to halal foods. "Why can't Muslims eat pork? Why can't Jews eat bottom-feeding fish?" Parasites, parasites, parasites. "Why can't Jews or Muslims get married to more than one person at a time?" STDs, STDs, STDs? I don't think it's much of a stretch. If the Jewish elders were trying to look out for the people's best medical interests in the one case, it stands to reason that they might have been in the other case as well.
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