An analysis of the cross cultural perspective of polygyny

While men may seek other sexual relationships during the period of a long postpartum taboo, it is not clear why polygyny is the only possible solution to the problem, since the legitimation of sex does not depend exclusively on marriage.

In some cases, polygyny allows women to achieve a higher status within her community that she normally could not achieve in a monogamous relationship.

Henkel argues that this is limited in its thinking. The argument then follows that this forty percent would then resort to risky behaviour in order to garner a wife and once garnering or capturing that wife would violently and passive-aggressively control the situation in order to keep that wife.

Jealousy, while not an inevitable consequence of polygyny, is reported in many polygynous societies.

An analysis of a cross cultural perspective of polygyny

We find that artificially established monogamy had become a factor in ruining the family structure, and the social, economic, and political systems in this country.

Of course, the role of ideology and the banning of polygyny must also be considered as factors contributing to the decline of the practice.

Taking aside the plagues of venereal diseases, herpes and AIDS, the male continues to enjoy himself free of worry. Although antecedents to the occurrence and maintenance of polygyny vary from society to society, ideology and customs develop once polygyny is adopted that contribute to its perpetuation long after the original reason for the practice disappears.

We are dedicated to helping students with their everyday College needs. What Is a Family Anyway. The fact that the sex ratio at the same time of young adulthood is numerically balanced in some societies suggests that while a sex ratio imbalance may contribute to the development of polygyny in special cases, it is an incomplete explanation for the existence of polygyny in the majority of societies in the world.

Non-monogamy is reproductively savvy for males in order to spread their genes, and for females in order to improve the hardiness and genetic variety of their offspring Benson. Children in polygynous unions may be reared primarily by their mother, under the supervision of the senior cowife, or jointly with a system of rotation.

The text contains a system for classifying cultures to determine their position on the cultural evolutionary ladder. In a classic failure, Henrich uses a global analysis of Polygynous societies to form an argument against its use here in North America.

It has been proven advantageous economically and politically for both males and females.

Culture and Mythology/ A Cross Cultural Perspective Of Polygyny term paper 17580

In the Introduction to the Guide, Levinson states that it is a new kind of information retrieval tool, an analytical propositional inventory of theories of human behavior that have been developed or tested by means of worldwide cross-cultural studies Hence, we find in many Bantu communities of Africa that the desire to have many wives is one of the leading motives in the life of every man; while the fact that in many Melanesian and Polynesian communities, polygyny is a prerogative and therefore the chief testifies to the social prestige attaching to it Priso.

Tylor was the first to attempt a statistical cross-cultural analysis with this paper, delivered to the Royal Anthropological Institute. It is relatively new in human society for families to have only two children on average. The result is that marriages are relatively transient and divorce is common.

Culture and Mythology/ A Cross Cultural Perspective Of Polygyny term paper 17580

Murdock combined the modern statistical method with modern ethnography, and statistical cross-cultural comparative method to create the HRAF. While polygyny tends to be viewed by Western cultures as an instrument for the domination of women by men, the degree of autonomy experienced by women in polygynous unions varies within and among cultures.

Tylor and Lewis Henry Morgan, although they did not describe such cultures as savage or barbarous. Volume 4 is the index of the entries.

Unlike wives in many other African groups who live in their own huts, Ijaw wives have apartments within one large structure and our brought into much more frequent contact with their co-wives Rosaldo In addition, women find polygyny helps lighten their work burden.

Please select one of the following: In this book Morgan detailed the seven stages of society. In many African communities, the chief derives his wealth from the plurality of his wives, who by means of the produce of their agricultural labor enable him to exercise the lavish hospitality upon which so much of his power rests.


To minimize this conflict among cowives, a set of rules is often established that specifies responsibilities and rights concerning sex, economics, and personal possessions. The Supreme Court is set to consider the polygamy question in November, Having other cowives lets women share the economic and domestic responsibilities of the household, it allows independence from the husband, and also the freedom from fulfilling constant sexual needs of the male.

While this theory is of historical interest, there exists no empirical support for the greater sex drive of the male, nor is there any reason to expect the male sex drive to vary from one culture to another. None of the simian species are strictly monogamous; our closest relatives, the chimpanzees, practice a form of group marriage.

Methods that are specific to Cross-Cultural Analysis are:polygyny in the standard sample of of the world's societies (Murdock and White ) and other cross- cultural codes, three complexes of polygynous variables.

Abstract. Polygyny is cross-culturally common and a topic of considerable academic and policy interest, often deemed a harmful cultural practice serving the interests of. The Sex Ratio as a Predictor of Cross-National Variation in Violent Crime Cross-cultural perspectives on nonmarital birth.

Westport, CT: Greenwood. Google Scholar: The Sex Ratio as a Predictor of Cross-National Variation in Violent Crime.

A cross cultural perspective of polygyny Essay

Nigel Barber. Multiple regression analyses of data for the societies in the Standard Cross-Cultural Sample indicate that the two main independent cross-cultural predictors of appreciable (i.e., more than occasional) nonsororal polygyny are high male mortality in war (resulting in an excess of females) and high pathogen stress, which seems to favor nonsororal polygyny to maximize genetic variation and disease resistance in.


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Edward B. Tylor made the move into modern cross-cultural analysis with his statistical methodology explained in the school’s modern premiere paper, “On a Method of Investigating the Development of Institutions, Applied to Laws of Marriage and Descent” ().

An analysis of the cross cultural perspective of polygyny
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