The legend/myth of the Amazons is one that I always find particularly interesting. They are mentioned by both the Greeks and the Romans and are thought to have lived either in present day Turkey, the Ukraine or Libya. Perhaps they even lived in Minoan Crete. In some stories, they killed all the males and went to neighbouring tribes once a year to have sex & get pregnant with the next generation. The resulting male children would either be killed, sent back to their fathers, or left to fend for themselves in the wild. In other stories, after being victorious in war, they would not kill all of the men but rather, take some of them back as slaves with whom they would have sex once or twice a year. One thing is certain, they did not much care for males!
I think this legend reveals something which exists deeply within nature itself, namely, that if females do not find males useful, they are actively hostile to those males and eject them from participating in their society, which is mostly made of females.
What got me thinking about this subject lately is I was recently doing some research on "Why Males Exist." In fact, I was looking up a book of the same name, titled Why Males Exist: An Inquiry into the Evolution of Sex - by Fred Hapgood. In doing so, I came across an article called "Mysteries of the Male", by Dr. John Launer, of QMJ: An international journal of medicine. This article really hit me hit me between the eyes when it started talking about "genetic-rape." I mean, the definition of rape has certainly been expanded over the years to the point that it means nothing like its original meaning, but "genetic-rape"?
"...we will see [the purpose of males] as an evolutionary compromise poised half way between invasion and alliance, parasitism and symbiosis, or genetic rape and informed consent. There is already much evidence to show how females resist the process physiologically (for example by stripping male gametes of all extra-nuclear DNA) and how males try to control reproduction against their females’ will (for example, by killing off competitor sperm or genetic material in the female genital tract, or alternatively killing the competitors and their offspring directly)." -- Dr. John Launer, Mysteries of the Male, Oxford Journals, Medicine, QMJ: An International Journal of Medicine, Volume 98, Issue 12, Pp. 919-920.
I really had to question why this was referred to in such an inflammatory, political charged manner as "invasion, genetic rape and informed consent," and why Launer goes on to portray the female cell resisting the males' attempts to reproduce with females against their will. "Wow!" I thought to myself, "this guy is saying that at the very basic, fundamental level, all things male are rape-related, with the female cell the victim, resisting the attempt."
"All men are rapists and that's all they are" -- Marilyn French, Feminist Authoress; (later, advisoress to Al Gore's Presidential Campaign.)
Now, I get it what Dr. Launer is talking about. While I am no biology major, I have read enough about reproduction over the years to know that two males' sperm simultaneously inside a female will fight against each other, trying kill each other off in order be the one that "gets to the prize," and also, females secret certain acids that attack sperm cells, killing off many of the weaker ones. I get it, but it was the rape terminology that threw me for a loop.
What is also going in in the reproductive process, and isn't mentioned, is the male cells are fighting and competing to provide the female cell with their best and strongest manifestation, all the while the female cell is as actively hostile to as many as she can be, in a manner that also supports only the best and strongest managing to reproduce with her. In other words, genetic hypergamy, with the female trying to ward off all but the very best, with whom she eventually will submit and reproduce with. So, in other words, all of this competition and cellular "violence" is done in such a manner to ensure the female cell's wishes, not the male's. They all want to be "the one," while she only wants "the best one," and she is actively hostile to all the others below that. Hypergamy at a cellular level.
Near the beginning of his article, Dr. Launer gave examples of animal species that had virtually useless males:
"...the males of many species are useless at doing anything except sitting around, getting fat at the females’ expense, and—in the words of Richard Dawkins—duffing up other males.2 Among some animals, such as elephant seals, the vast majority die as wasteful, disappointed virgins.
Given the cost of males, it is perhaps not surprising that there are at least 40 species where the female kills the male during or after sex. In the case of the praying mantis, she literally bites his head off as part of foreplay, and he carries on in a delighted reflex of posthumous orgasm. Females of other species are equally imaginative: male scale insects have been demoted to microscopic excrescences on their females’ legs, while female angler fish carry their mates on their backs as tiny dwarves." -- Dr. John Launer, Mysteries of the Male, Oxford Journals, Medicine, QMJ: An International Journal of Medicine, Volume 98, Issue 12, Pp. 919-920.
And there is no doubt that this is true. We see the same thing in a beehive, where the male drones are utterly useless to the hive, save but for when it produces a queen which needs fertilizing. For the rest, the drones don't do any work, ruin parts of the hive with their special form of comb, and suck energy and food. For this reason, beekeepers will actively try to control the drone population in the hive to increase honey production.
Launer concludes his article with noting that scientific advances in cloning, and the inevitable lifting of legal constraints, will enable human women to do away with men altogether, so long as men don't destroy the world first, and he seemingly applauds the end of his own sex.
"Assuming that the minor technical problems of gene damage during cloning can soon be overcome, and that legal constraints will in time be removed—assumptions that seem reasonable by any standard—it is possible that the women of our species will soon have the overall choice of doing with very few men, or with none at all. If, in the mean time, they can prevent males from destroying any environment in which to survive, they might be forgiven if they choose to follow the path that has already been pioneered by the bdelloid rotifers. Attempts to understand maleness or to redress its difficulties will then become entirely academic." -- Dr. John Launer, Mysteries of the Male, Oxford Journals, Medicine, QMJ: An International Journal of Medicine, Volume 98, Issue 12, Pp. 919-920.
And we're back to the legend of the Amazons where the females killed off the males, aren't we? Everything is a full cycle.
It appears Dr. Launer has the pleasure of holding the company of radical feminists in his camp too!
“I haven’t the faintest notion what possible revolutionary role white hetero- sexual men could fulfill, since they are the very embodiment of reactionary- vested-interest-power. But then, I have great difficulty examining what men in general could possibly do about all this. In addition to doing the shitwork that women have been doing for generations, possibly not exist? No, I really don’t mean that. Yes, I really do.” -- Robin Morgan
"The proportion of men must be reduced to and maintained at approximately 10% of the human race." -- Sally Miller Gearhart, The Future - If There Is One - Is Female
"If life is to survive on this planet, there must be a decontamination of the Earth. I think this will be accompanied by an evolutionary process that will result in a drastic reduction of the population of males." -- Mary Daly, former Professor at Boston College, 2001
As I stated at the beginning of this article, I had been searching for the book Why Males Exist: An Inquiry into the Evolution of Sex - by Fred Hapgood. Although the book is somewhat dated (1979), its general thrust is that females either create or stop creating males entirely for the purpose of serving the needs of the species, which is by default female. You see, there are certain species in which there are females but no males, such as the New Mexico Whiptail Lizard. However, the problem with such species is that the lack of males gives them little ability to adapt, and so they only live in ecological niches where they don't have to compete with other species. As soon as they are forced to compete with a male-female species, the all female species quickly gets run-over because they have an inferior ability to adapt. Several species, therefore, have the ability to either create or stop creating males, according to their environmental circumstances. Dr. Launer himself confirms that such species exist in his article:
"...alternative methods of reproduction include budding, hermaphroditism and isogamy (i.e. two individuals, not distinguished as males and females, combining their genes). There are asexual variants among all sorts of creatures, including jellyfish, dandelions, lichens and lizards." -- Dr. John Launer, Mysteries of the Male, Oxford Journals, Medicine, QMJ: An International Journal of Medicine, Volume 98, Issue 12, Pp. 919-920.
As well, he asserts that some species will alter their reproductive strategies if circumstances demand it:
"Many species alternate between sexual and asexual reproduction, either on a regular basis or occasionally, as the circumstances require." -- Dr. John Launer, Mysteries of the Male, Oxford Journals, Medicine, QMJ: An International Journal of Medicine, Volume 98, Issue 12, Pp. 919-920.
Mr. Cadell Last, founder of the website The Advanced Apes, has recently written an article titled The Aftermath of Sex (Or Why Males Exist). Mr. Last also confirms that there are indeed such species that can reproduce sexually without having two sexes:
"You do not need two sexes to sexually reproduce. For example, some fungi are perfectly happy as isogamous organisms. Isogamous means that they can share their sex cells with any other member of the same species." -- Cadell Last, The Aftermath of Sex (Or Why Males Exist), The Advanced Apes
In another article of Mr. Last's, titled Why Have Sex?, he further confirms the notion that when under environmental stress, organisms will change their reproductive strategies to better adapt:
"Asexual reproduction is easy, but it is also problematic because adaptations are slow to take hold in a changing environment. Asexual organisms are basically clonal populations. Their only variation comes from random mutation. In contrast, sexual reproducing organisms can utilize recombination (50% of each sexes genome) to create novel genomes. This novelty is the variation natural selection needs to produce new successful adaptations to changing environments. In fact, many asexual species start reproducing sexually when under extreme environmental stress for this reason." -- Cadell Last, Why Have Sex?, The Advanced Apes
However, he contradicts my above hypothesis of such species being by default, "female."
"There are no “males” and “females”. That seems like a more effective system than the male/female system where half of the population is genetically off limits." -- Cadell Last, The Aftermath of Sex (Or Why Males Exist), The Advanced Apes
Instead, male and female are defined by the size and number of gametes:
"The very definition of male and female, at its fundamental level, is defined by the differences between gametes. Females have large and relatively few gametes (e.g., eggs). In contrast, males have small and practically infinite gametes (e.g., sperm)." -- Cadell Last, The Aftermath of Sex (Or Why Males Exist), The Advanced Apes
To me, this seems to be merely a matter of semantics. (The large and few gametes eventually produce self-sustaining organisms, while the small and plentiful gametes merely exchange genetic information). Pretty much everywhere we confirm that the sex which gives birth is the female one. By this definition, if there is only one sex, then it must be that a species in which every organism can give birth must be an all female species. Males do not give birth. Anywhere. Period. Females do. Everywhere. I suspect a change in definition such as this has to do with the political correctness which pervades all of our educational institutions, but I will delve into that aspect of science in another article rather than stray off topic in this one. One thing which is clear is that when under environmental stress, several species will switch from asexual to sexual reproduction, and the purpose of this is to "serve the species."
The Feminist Dictionary also more or less agrees with the above scientific notions.
"***MALE: ... represents a variant of or deviation from the category of female. The first males were mutants... the male sex represents a degeneration and deformity of the female.'" -- From: 'A Feminist Dictionary', ed. Kramarae and Treichler, Pandora Press, 1985
"***MAN: ... an obsolete life form... an ordinary creature who needs to be watched ... a contradictory baby-man ..." -- From: 'A Feminist Dictionary', ed. Kramarae and Treichler, Pandora Press, 1985
Returning to the example of the useless male elephant seals Dr. Launer gave us in his article, where most of them died as virgins, it is necessary to note that Launer makes some great leaps from cellular biology, described as "genetic rape," to the useless elephant seals, and then to the human males which he seemingly wishes will be done away with as soon as technology will allow. In this train of logic, he has left out some important yet politically incorrect factors, such as the dreaded, evil patriarchy. The male elephant seals are obviously not rapists if the vast majority of them die as virgins. If they were rapists at the fundamental level, they would simply take a female and rape her to ensure their genetic success. Instead, they are fought off by the females themselves and are further stymied in their reproductive goals by the "alpha male" elephant seals, who further don't allow them to breed with the females. In this process, we see the entire situation is designed to only allow the best males to breed with the females, much the same as at the cellular level where most of the male cells are killed off by other male cells or are actively resisted by the female cell, only allowing the best and strongest to exchange genetic material with the female. This entire process serves the reproductive goals of the female rather than the male. This confirms the notion Robert Briffault put forth back in 1927 with his book, The Mothers:
“The female, not the male, determines all the conditions of the animal family. Where the female can derive no benefit from association with the male, no such association takes place.” -- Robert Briffault, The Mothers, I, 191
The reason those male elephant seals are useless is because they have failed to provide a benefit to the females, therefore the females do not associate with them. There is much more benefit for the female to associate with and pass on the genes of the strongest and best males, while rejecting and ignoring all the rest, making them "useless."
In the comments section of Cadell Last's article, The Aftermath of Sex (Or Why Males Exist), Mr. Last disappoints me by condemning "the patriarchy" along the lines of the politically correct feminist narrative, rather than putting the pieces of the puzzle together:
Quote: "It's interesting that many human cultures place such high value on the male."
"Yes, I think this is a product of patriarchy. In a sense that is ironic because patriarchy evolves to gain complete control of female reproduction (monopolizing a scarce resource)."
First off, female reproduction is not "scarce." It is everywhere! If it were not, we would quickly die out. What is scarce is the male who reproduces. As with the useless male elephant seals, most males do not reproduce while most females do. The female has a virtual 100% monopoly on reproduction in most of nature, not the male. "Patriarchy" is an attempt to equalize the reproductive process between males and females. It is an attempt to take those useless males and make them productive by attaching them to the reproductive process, of which they are normally rejected from. In fact, in all of nature, the only species which tries to equalize the reproduction of the male and female is the human species.
This is not something necessarily derived as a social construct from such things as religion either, for there are indications that "pair bonding" is something which evolved naturally amongst the higher primates, rather than being forced upon them:
"The finding corroborates an influential new view of early human origins advanced by Bernard Chapais, a primatologist at the University of Montreal, in his book “Primeval Kinship” (2008). Dr. Chapais showed how a simple development, the emergence of a pair bond between male and female, would have allowed people to recognize their relatives, something chimps can do only to a limited extent. When family members dispersed to other bands, they would be recognized and neighboring bands would cooperate instead of fighting to the death as chimp groups do." -- Nicholas Wade, New View of How Humans Moved Away from Apes, The New York Times, March 10, 2011
In humans, the biggest "tool" which Nature has bestowed upon us is our superior brains. The problem is that this tool takes a long time to develop, and, unlike most other species, human offspring are born virtually helpless, being unable to walk, talk or even feed themselves. The emergence of pair-bonding between human males and females brought those "useless males" more directly into the reproductive process than even the previous "alpha males" who were the sole breeders of the entire herd were. This pair bonding brought the males into directly provisioning benefits for both the female and the offspring she (and he) produced. Pair bonding between the male and female stopped the tendency of males to "duff each other up" and rather, enticed them to co-operate with each other by bringing them directly into the reproductive process. You can see that this process endorses the views of Robert Briffault, quoted above, who declares that males must bring a benefit to the female in order for her to associate and reproduce with him. This is similar to how birds court each other, with the male enticing the female by bringing provisions for nest building, or by being the flamboyantly coloured of the sexes, so as to attract the attention of predators away from mother and offspring. Daniel Amneus, Ph D, calls this "putting sex to work" in his online book, The Case for Father Custody.
What is perhaps a social construct derived from Patriarchy is the suppression of the desire to change mates on a rotating polyandry cycle:
"...humans possess several neurophysiological systems of attachment linked with pairbonding and monogamy across species (Fisher, 1998; Hazan & Zeifman, 1999; Young, 2003). Fisher (1992) suggests that human patterns of weaning, birth spacing, divorce, and remarriage all point to a system of serial monogamy. It takes about 4 years to wean a child in hunter-gatherer cultures, and birth spacing in a foraging environment averages about 4 years (Blurton Jones 1986). Many divorces occur between the fourth and sixth year of marriage (Fisher, 1989, 1992), and men who practice serial monogamy are more reproductively successful than men who stay married to the same woman for a lifetime. Women who mate serially do not have reproductive advantage over other women (Buckle, Gallup, & Rodd, 1996)." -- Excerpt from The Handbook Of Evolutionary Psychology (2005) (p. 261) edited by David Buss. (Italic emphasis added)
The social construct of lifelong monogamy rather than serial monogamy is one that resulted in the phenomenon of adolescence or, extended childhood, which is further used to develop both the mental capacity of humans as well as their socialization, rather than setting them out to fend for themselves once sexual maturity has been developed, as occurs in most of nature. In other words, "patriarchy" (or fatherhood) is an essential component to what separates us from the rest of the beasts of the field. In fact, it is fair to say that patriarchy is what has led to the development of civilization itself - by taking those "useless" males' energy, and putting it to productive purposes in order to protect and provide, so that females will wish to associate with males and allow them into the reproductive process.
Further, you can see that since men are more reproductively successful within the serial monogamy paradigm than they are in lifetime monogamy, while females do not derive a reproductive advantage in serial monogamy, it is the female, not the male, that gains the most benefit from the monogamy which is enforced by Patriarchy. Since, as per Robert Briffault above, the female does not associate with males unless there is a benefit to herself, females were complicit in forming the dreaded Patriarchy and enforcing its moral codes in society. This also confirms another article which I have recently written called, Tiresias' Story - The Ten Pleasures of Sex, wherein the myth of Tiresias reveals "womankind's greatest secret," namely that rather than being put upon by having sex, females derive many more benefits from sex than males do.
Now, you may be wondering what all this has to do with the Amazons which this article originally referred to. It has to do with a full cycle being achieved, where once the purpose of males (to benefit the female) is fulfilled and women no longer derive benefits from males, they will do away with males altogether just like the Amazon women did, or as do organisms that can switch between asexual and sexual reproduction in order to overcome environmental circumstances.
This cycle can be confirmed by the work of J.D. Unwin, who some eight decades ago wrote Sex and Culture, and documented over 80 cultures which confirms that the rise of civilization corresponds with sexual restraint and "putting sex to work" and declines under the androgyny and the sexual freedom civilization's prosperity itself delivers. In the beginning, the duality of sexuality (male and female gender roles) is used to overcome environmental adversity and as the adversity disappears, so does sexual restraint and the need for gender roles... which causes the fall of the civilization and thus again creates the adversity which demands gender roles be enforced. When females can derive benefits elsewhere rather than directly from the male, such as from forms of welfare and protection provided by the government, they start doing away with males and revert back to a lower form of reproduction - more like the useless elephant seals, where most die as virgins who spend their lives "duffing up other males." Correspondingly, this mimics the social setting of the inner city ghetto, where most children are born to single mothers out of wedlock and are supported by welfare rather than productive work, while the males sit on the street corners engaging in all sorts of violent and destructive criminal behaviour in the hopes of appearing "alpha" enough to be permitted some breeding opportunities with the welfare moms. Certainly this is a sign of social decay, rather than the triumph of ridding society of marriage as so many feminists have desired over the past decades. It is all part of a cycle: Under the prosperity of including males in reproduction, civilization builds itself up until it becomes prosperous enough to no longer need males, but no longer including males in reproduction causes society to decay until it destroys itself, creating the adverse conditions which require males to be included again.
I am sure that you have all heard about the superiority of the female's "multi-tasking brain." There are some advantages to such a brain, for sure - especially in regard to performing certain tasks while also caring for children. Most women were either pregnant or caring for their offspring throughout most of their adult lives until fairly recently in human history, so it makes sense that their brains would have evolved in this manner. The male brain, however, is more linear and focused (while excluding other distractions), allowing the male to provide a benefit which females cannot do themselves. A woman's brain operates more under the principle of "a jack of all trades but master of none," whereas the male brain specializes intensely and solves complex problems or invents things which circumvent problems. This is why virtually all things around you with more than two moving parts were invented by a man, not a woman. It was not the dreaded, evil patriarchy which held women back, but rather, that women's mental nature itself is not as suited for breaking ground as the male's is.
You can see this in an industry which has been female-dominated for millenia: Midwifery. Throughout the entire history of midwifery, while under female domain, there were scant few improvements and many midwives were still practicing mysticism and animalism in their craft. When males entered into the sphere, forceps were soon invented to aid in the birthing process. The same is true in such spheres as philosophy, music and art. It was not patriarchal oppression which prevented women from partaking in these areas of study. Most upper-class women were educated in such areas as music and art, yet the greatest composers and artists were consistently male. In the area of philosophy, so few tools are needed (a brain, observational abilities and an optional pen and paper) that there is no excuse like "oppression" to justify women's absence from it. People have been Jews in Nazi concentration camps and philosophized. Hitler himself wrote Mein Kampf while in prison, as well, Antonio Gramsci's Prison Notebooks were obviously written while he was incarcerated. There are reasons other than "patriarchal oppression" for women's glaring absence in these realms.
This has been the story of human sexual relations and "feminine-ism" since the beginning and we were living in caves. When the cave-woman heard a rustling outside, she stood behind her caveman and used him as a shield to make sure it wasn't a dangerous sabre-tooth tiger. Once the caveman had secured the territory outside of the cave, the cave-woman took over that safe space, tending the hearth and foraging for nearby berries, while shooing the caveman away to further go out into the wild and figure out how to hunt the wooly mammoth, then bring her back some juicy mammoth tenderloins for dinner. When the man has safely conquered food production, she again takes over that realm and pushes the man even further into the hinterland, demanding that he provide some other benefit to her which she does not already possess, and so forth and so on. We see this everywhere. In the development of the West, it was mostly the males who pioneered forth into the wilderness alone. There was nothing stopping women from discovering what was on the other sides of those hills, all they had to do was 'go,' yet it was almost solely the males who found out the answer. Once the West had been tamed, the women flocked in afterwards. The same happens in the workplace, which not too long ago was very difficult, dangerous and downright hostile to humans. Once males conquered it enough to make it "safe," the females poured in and claimed they were "oppressed" for not being allowed to participate in the past, and the males made room for them and accommodated their wishes.
This is the irony that escapes Dr. Launer, as he declares that males are so useless that scientific advances in genetics and cloning will soon allow females to rightly do away with males altogether. The problem is, these scientific advances which will allow this are the result of males, not females! Should human females do away with males, as Launer seems to encourage, the very technology used to do so will stagnate and decay, which will again create the adverse conditions which demand the need for females to create males again. Dr. Launer's logic almost seems to follow along the lines of technology advancing to such a degree that it can create a global EMP (Electromagnetic Pulse) which wipes out all of the technology on earth, including the technology which created the EMP, then declaring it a triumph of technology!
Contrary to popular belief, feminism did very little to "liberate" women. Rather, the technology created by men is mostly responsible for women's improved conditions. The chores of the household were greatly reduced because of technology created by men, such as the dishwasher, refrigerator, electric stove, and washer/dryer units neatly stored in closets. Before these inventions, women would have spent a full day's labour merely chopping wood, starting fires, boiling water, packing ice and scrubbing clothes on the washboard. Since all of women's traditional work could now be done with the flick of a switch, it freed up women's time so they could enter into other fields of work during the day. Women are not constantly pregnant from their teenage years to the end of their fertile years because of technological advances men created to benefit women, such as the birth-control pill and safe abortion techniques which freed women to look for other directions in life rather than simple motherhood. Feminism did comparatively miniscule things to liberate women. The only thing they really "freed" were their bossoms from their burning bras.
There is quite some danger in blindly following science which has absorbed falsehoods from political movements masquerading as legitimate study, such as Women's Studies. The best thing that could be done for humanity to ensure our technology and science continues to advance is to make sure that males survive. Creating the technology for humans to revert back to forms found in lower, less complex organisms, is hardly an achievement worth pursuing. The Amazon women obviously didn't survive and dominate the earth either. If they had a superior system, they would still be here.
"If women don't find you handsome, they should at least find you handy." -- Red Green
Dr. John Launer's article, "Mysteries of the Male," referenced the book, The Red Queen, by Matt Ridley. FemaleMisogynist has also written a short blurp on The Red Queen.