Even educated fleas do it
October 2, 2010 6:47 PM Subscribe
How many human societies in recent history, if any, have been reliably reported to have no belief in the link between sex and conception, or the link between fathers and children?
posted by Countess Elena to Society & Culture (13 answers total) 18 users marked this as a favorite
I was having a friendly argument with another person who loves anthropology, and he states that "many" hunter-gatherer tribes have been discovered to have no concept of the link between sex and childbearing, or of paternity. He says that this knowledge only became widespread after animals were domesticated.
Personally, I had understood that only a few peoples had ever been reported to reject the concept of a link between sex and children,* and/or between fathers and children, and that these were not reliable reports in themselves. However, I do not recall how long ago I read this, or where. I tried to look this subject up for myself, but I don't know the right search words to give me what I'm looking for. Can you help?
* I'm aware that there are many very different cultural ideas about fatherhood and conception, but I'm referring to the very basic idea: a man has sex with a woman, the woman has a child, and the man is that child's father.