Unveiling the substance in the polygamy game
Inside the Beehive with Isa Ssenkumba
Human attraction to the opposite sex and hence marriage is the widest topic in our social lives. Societies continue to attach great importance to sex and marriage than any other thing. Probably that’s why BEEHIVE stories are centering mainly on relationships, sexuality and marriage.
There is no doubt that polygamy is a house hold name, world over. Polygamy is the practice of taking more than one spouse at a time. This is not to be confused with polyamory, the practice of having multiple girlfriends and boyfriends at once.
In US alone, polygamy has a pretty long and complicated history. Most people attribute polygamy to Mormonism because the Mormons used to practice it; it was something that was a part of their history.
However, when the United States declared that this practice was no longer legal, most sensible Mormons decided that they should probably stop marrying so many wives. However, some people were livid with this declaration and decided to branch off so they could continue to have more than one wife. This is how The Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints was formed.
Today we are at liberty to view polygamy as an obsolete and unfair practice against women. But its existence is not also by accident, since some intelligence is attached to it. The thing that sets humans apart from animals more than any other thing is our intelligence. The evolution of our intelligence may have played a major role in our tendency towards polygamous relationships. Weaker, smaller males would have had no other option but to employ their wits when trying to steal mates away from stronger, larger males.
Just take a look at what is happening even today; intelligent males are more likely to be successful and find a partner.
This suggests that eventually, the intelligent males probably beat the stronger males in the race between brains and brawn.
In one example, a male Chimp was observed to smash a metal canister into the ground, scaring the other larger males away long enough for this intelligent Chimp to mate with many of the females. Such an example shows how intelligence not only increases the chances for a male to mate, but also the likelihood of a group engaging in polygamy.
Another factor is the war factor. War has been an ever-present factor throughout human evolution and history, and may have played a major role in determining human mating strategies.
First of all, men are almost always the only gender to engage in war. Therefore, men die in droves while women are unaffected. This leads to a scarcity in males that necessitates polygamy in females, as one man is required to impregnate multiple females in order to rebuild the population.
Today, we live in a society where 1% of the populations hold 90% of the world’s wealth. But is this anything new? Since ancient history there have been countless kings, pharaohs, and emperors, all of them holding a huge amount of a population’s wealth and, most importantly, an unlimited supply of women. There is no doubt that wealth increases the tendency and the drive to pursue polygamous relationships.