Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships

Product Information

This groundbreaking book takes a deep and provocative dive into the prehistoric origins of human sexual behavior, challenging the long-held beliefs about sex, marriage, and family. It boldly asserts the unconventional notion that monogamy may be more of a cultural construct than a natural inclination for humans. Through an exploration of historical and evolutionary evidence, the book paints a picture of our ancestors’ sexual past that is vastly different from the monogamous relationships that are often idealized today.

By contextualizing human sexuality within the broader scope of evolutionary psychology, the book engages its readers in a thought-provoking analysis of how our sexual behavior is influenced by both biological imperatives and societal norms. The authors meticulously dissect the standard narratives we’ve been told about human sexual evolution and present new perspectives that highlight the complexities of our sexual behaviors, desires, and relationships.

On The Origin Of The Specious

The first section, “On The Origin Of The Specious,” confronts the myths and stereotypes surrounding our dietary choices and their relation to sexuality, setting the tone for the iconoclastic insights that follow. In the subsequent chapters, the book takes a critical look at the legacy of Darwin’s theories, expanding on what was not known during his time and how evolutionary psychology can unveil the truths about our sexual nature.

.When examining the prehistoric narrative of sexual evolution, the book presents compelling arguments and evidence against what they term the “Standard Narrative.” It questions the assumptions we have about the passive female libido, the role of male parental investment, and the dynamics between the sexes in evolutionary terms.

.The Ape in the Mirror

.“The Ape in the Mirror” chapter explores the relationship between primates and human nature, offering a reevaluation of whether we should be using the chimpanzee model as a baseline for understanding our own behaviors. This segment is particularly critical in challenging the idea of a direct continuity between the sexual behaviors of our primate cousins and ourselves.

.Lust In Paradise

.In the “Lust In Paradise” portion, the book takes a closer examination of paradisiacal myths and the supposed losses they entail, suggesting that our notions of sexuality have been tainted by these narratives. It introduces the concept of joy in promiscuity and the complex social structures of bonobos, which appear to have a more fluid and generous approach to sexuality.

Mommies Dearest

Further, in the heart-wrenching chapter, “Mommies Dearest,” the book delves into the impact of social constructs on motherhood and family structures, provoking a reevaluation of the nuclear family model. This sets the stage for “Making a Mess of Marriage, Mating, and Monogamy,” a chapter that unravels the historical and cultural connotations of marriage and raises questions about its relevance and sanctity.

.The authors do not shy away from controversial topics like “Paternity Certainty” and “Jealousy,” where they expose the fragility of these concepts and how they play into our relationships and societal norms. These chapters dismantle the notion that paternity certainty is central to our species’ sexual evolution, offering alternative perspectives on love and freedom.

The Way We Weren’t

“The Way We Weren’t” dives into the concepts of wealth, economics, and politics from a prehistoric perspective, challenging the contemporary narratives of success and societal status. This segment assists the reader in rethinking our modern struggles through the lens of ancient affluence and poverty, shedding light on Paleolithic societies and their possibly more contented ways of life.

Bodies in Motion

As the book nears its conclusion with “Bodies in Motion,” it explores varied topics such as male sexual competition, the truth behind masculinity, and sexual pleasure from a prehistoric point of view. The visceral and candid discussions in chapters like “Sometimes a Penis Is Just a Penis” and “The Prehistory of O” offer refreshing and, at times, surprising views on genitalia and orgasm that defy puritanical prudishness.

Finally, in “Men Are From Africa, Women Are From Africa,” the authors dispel the myth of vast psychological differences between genders, suggesting that both hail from the same evolutionary roots. Throughout the book, taboo subjects are embraced, deconstructed, and presented in new lights, encouraging readers to confront their biases and to understand sexuality beyond the confines of modern societal expectations.

Skill Set

: The book addresses understanding Female Psychology.

Experience Level

: It is a valuable resource for Beginners.

Learning Format

: Available in Book format.

Coach or Expert

: Created by Cacilda Jethá and Christopher Ryan.

Release Date

: Initially released on July 05, 2011.

Table Of Contents/ List Of Topics Covered


On The Origin Of The Specious

1. Remember the Yucatan!

– You Are What You Eat

2. What Darwin Didn’t Know About Sex

– The Flintstonization of Prehistory
– What Is Evolutionary Psychology and Why Should You Care?
– Lewis Henry Morgan

3. A Closer Look at the Standard Narrative of Human Sexual Evolution

– How Darwin Insults Your Mother
– The Famously Flaccid Female Libido
– Male Parental Investment
– ‘Mixed Strategies’ in the War Between the Sexes
– Extended Sexual Receptivity and Concealed Ovulation

The Ape in the Mirror

– Primates and Human Nature

– Doubting the Chimpanzee Model
– In Search of Primate Continuity


Lust In Paradise (Solitary?)

5. Who Lost What in Paradise?

– On Getting Funky and Rockin’ Round the Clock

6. Who’s Your Daddies?

– The Joy of S.E.Ex.
– The Promise of Promiscuity
– Bonobo Beginnings

Mommies Dearest

– Nuclear Meltdown

Making a Mess of Marriage, Mating, and Monogamy

– Marriage: The ‘Fundamental Confidion’ of the Human Species?
– On Matrimonial Whoredom


Paternity Certainty: The Crumbling Cornerstone of the Standard Narrative

.– Love, Lust, and Liberty at Lugu Lake
– On the Inevitability of Patriarchy
– The March of the Monogamous


Jealousy: A beginner’s Guide to Coverting Thy Neighbor’s Spouse

– Zero-Sum Sex
– How to Tell When a Man Loves a Woman


The Way We Weren’t

11. ‘The Wealth of Nature’ (Poor?)
– Poor, Pitiful Me
– The Despair of Millionaires
– Finding Contentment ‘at the Bottom of the Scale of Human Beings’


12. The Selfish Meme (Nasty?)
– Homo Economocus
– The Tragedy of the Commons
– Dreams of Perpetual Progress
– Ancient Poverty or Assumed Affluence?
– On Paleolithic Politics


13. The Never-Ending Battle over Prehistoric War (Brutish?)
– Professor Pinker, Red in Tooth and Claw
– The Mysterious Disappearance of Margaret Power
– The Spoils of War
– The Napoleonic Invasion (The Yanomami Controversy)
– The Desperate Search for Hippie Hypocrisy and Banobo Brutality


The Longevity Lie (Short?)

– When Does Life Begin? When Does It End?
– Is 80 the New 30?
– Stressed to Death
– Who You Calling a Starry-Eyed Romantic, Pal?

Bodies In Motion


15. Little Big Man
– All’s Fair in Love and Sperm War

16. The Truest Measure of a Man

– Hard Core in the Stone Age

17. Sometimes a Penis Is Just a Penis

.18. The Prehistory of O

– ‘What Horrid Extravagancies of Minde!’
– Beware the Devil’s Teat
– The Force Required to Suppress It

19. When Girls Go Wild

– Female Copulatory Vocalization
– Sin Tetas, No Hay Paraiso
– Come Again?

Men Are From Africa, Women Are From Africa

20. On Mona Lisa’s Mind

21. The Pervert’s Lament

– Just Say What?
– Kellogg’s Guide to Child Abuse
– The Curse of Calvin Coolidge
– The Perils of Monotomy
– A Few More Reasons I Need Somebody New

22. Confronting the Sky Together

– Everybody Out of the Closet
– The Marriage of the Sun and the Moon