There was a lot good, and a lot not so good, about this book. To summarize my main complaint with it, it's written like a bunch of college lectures from a semester or two that were thrown together. Each chapter is individually viable, but there's little that holds everything together, other than very loosely, and no really good or insightful conclusions or conjectures put forth from the other material in here.
That being said, some of the material, background research, and case studies are very good. It looks at the less-well-known side of various concepts (mainly the standard narrative of male/female monogamous relationships) and less often cited studies. So if you're looking for different perspectives on relationship and marriage and monogamy, there's a lot of good background material here.
So it has interesting material; it just doesn't hold well together as a cohesive writing. If you accept that going in, it's certainly not a bad read, and will make you think.
Essential reading for anyone willing to consider the hard truth about why long-term monogamous relationships do not seem to work. Not jaded, in fact, celebratory and quite sex-positive, Sex at Dawn is a fun listen as well as enlightening. The narrators are fantastic on this version. My best Audible purchase to date.
This is a work of significant importance. It deserves to be read, considered, discussed and and absorbed into one's view of life and love. I truly expect that society will be altered by this book. Maybe not this year or next, but over time these ideas and insights will gain momentum and a reassessment of how we live and interact and love and learn will result.
I think this is one of the most important books written in the last decade. I would stake a larger claim, but I am mindful the Guns, Germs and Steel was written around a decade ago. If you are a fan of Jared Diamond or Desmond Morris, then you must read this book.
Very well-written argument for the authors' POV about the evolution of human sexuality. Authors claim we took a left turn with the advent of agriculture. Binobo or chimp--that it the question. It is well-researched and references several of my other favorite researchers, including Steven Pinker. It got a second "listen," and that is unusual for this audiophile.
Very well written and researched, the authors question the accepted notion that monogamy is somehow natural for humans. Applys insigts from anthropology, archeology and biology to make the point that our ancestors were most likely non-monogamous. They go a bit off track when they try to attribute our monogamous culture to the market however. The problem is not the concept of personal property, but trying to apply that concept to relationships.
This book was a really enjoyable delve into human sexuality. I got this book not knowing what to expect and was more that pleasantly surprised. The narrator (Johnson) was very enjoyable to listen to and read it as if the author would, if that makes sense.
The book not only gives the author's theories into why we are who we are but also gives endless scientific research to back their claims.
I gave up after 90 minutes. The authors paint theories with which they disagree in cartoonish strokes and then assert their conclusions without any supporting data or argument. Perhaps it gets better but would anyone with anything to say really spend the first hour and a half wasting the listener's time? And the occasional turn of phrase the authors think is clever is anything but. Just a really, really bad book. Try the Selfish Gene, the Blank Slate, the Red Queen (by Matt Ridley), or anything by E. O. Wilson.
I am surprised by the overly positive reviews for this book. The basic idea presented is interesting alright (but not that new), and it probably rings with the feeling of being trapped in current societies sexual rules and restrictions. But the book is very repetitive and focuses too much on picking a fight with established theories of human sexuality instead of presenting arguments for the "new" theory. I guess this would have been good as a 2 hour lecture, there is not enough substance for a 10 hour book. I stopped half way through, to turn to a better use of my time.
I really enjoyed this book; the authors have a dry and sarcastic wit that I liked, and the information is really well presented. All that being said, I disagree with some of the 'facts', but the book is a great look at a fascinating subject.
The narrators are wonderful, as well. Clear diction without being stuffy; and Allyson Johnson has a knack for delivery of the better lines.