Tue Feb 26, 2008
Does the following passage come from the PR arm of a prestigious scientific research journal or a novel by Michel Houellebecq ?
In many monogamous animals, including marmosets and humans, males of high genetic quality are less likely to invest time in paternal care than are those of lower genetic quality. The theory behind this is that females view males with good genes as so desirable to the quality of their offspring that they are willing to sacrifice help with the rearing, letting the men get away with not being around. Lower-quality males make up for their poorer genes by being supportive and aiding in child rearing.
Given these realities, one strategy for a female is to develop a long-term relationship with a lower-quality male while secretly breeding with single high-quality males. The only problem then is getting caught. Long-term partners will often attack an adulterous female in the animal world. In humans, the penalties can be equally stiff.