Home > Critical Thinking, Current Affairs, Dystopia, Musings, Philosophy sans Sophistry, Reason, Secular Religions, Skepticism > Was Casual Incest More Common in the Era Before Recorded History?

Was Casual Incest More Common in the Era Before Recorded History?

Some of my regular readers might remember that I once posted an interesting photo series of Stephanie Seymour and one of her sons at a beach. Recently, she posed in lingerie (along with two of her sons) for a photoshoot in HarpersBazaar. Many people, both online and offline, thought that those photos and the implied relationship with her two supposedly gay sons was “icky” and “unnatural”. While the first type of objection (ickyness) is subjective, the second type (un-naturalness) implies objective evaluation. But, is casual incest among humans really that “un-natural” ?

But before we do that, let us get back to this particular case and be honest about the facts. Firstly, the mother of those teenage boys is a pretty well-preserved ex-supermodel. Secondly, her on-and-off-and-on again husband (and their father) is an rich white guy two decades older than her. Based on her dating history before marrying him (lots of rockstars), it is quite clear that she settled for him because he was filthy rich. It is also clear that she craves attention- perhaps much more so because she used to be a supermodel. It is therefore plausible that the relationship with her two teenage sons has a significant sexual component, despite their public statements to the contrary.

And this brings us back to the uncomfortable question: Could casual incest have been more common, even normal, in previous eras – especially during human prehistory?

The belief that incest was, and always has been, a fringe phenomena are based on a set of circular sophistic assumptions that have little basis in reality. And just to be clear, I am not trying to suggest that incest was ever the major sexual outlet for humans. Yet there is reason to believe that it was far more common than we want to or, perhaps more importantly, would like to believe.

The main scholastic argument against incest is based on the premise that it is dysgenic and that humans have a “natural” aversion to such encounters. But is that assumption supported by facts? Let us go after the dysgenic angle first. How many people obsessively filter the people they want to have sex, and perhaps children, with based on the “dysgenic-ness” of the outcome. While I am sure that aspy retards, such as those who frequent HBD sites, might care about dysgenics- people who are actually having sex are more concerned with factors such as the ease of getting laid, attractiveness, status and sometimes money.

Low barriers for partner selectivity are especially prevalent in casual sexual relationships, as opposed to those that are have socio-legal approval. Furthermore there is a large body of evidence which suggests that, historically, bestiality was not uncommon among those who worked around farm animals. To put it another way, people will have sex with far uglier and weirder people (and animals) than they will ever willingly admit.

But what about the supposed “natural” human aversion to incest? Aren’t we supposed to have some sort of deterministic aversion towards having sex with people we are closely related to? Well.. the real-life definitions of definition of “close” are rather vague and culturally determined. Consider the case of cousin marriages, which still account for around 10% of all marriages in the world yet are illegal in some parts of the USA.

For most of time anatomically modern humans have existed as a species, we have lived in tightly knit groups containing anywhere between 100 and 1000 individuals. Human groups are also quite distinct from those of most other mammalian groups in that are multi-generational and fairly gender balanced (at least over the medium term). Then there are logistical issues related to finding sexual partners outside your group. While most people born in the last few decades cannot imagine a would where people don’t live and find sexual partners in large and cosmopolitan cities, that was not always the case. Throughout human pre-history and history, most people never went further than 50 km from their birthplace. Given those conditions it is quite possible that people were more inbred than we would want to believe.

But there is more..

Over many years of searching through online porn (text, art, photos, videos) I came to an interesting realization. Certain sexual preferences and practices are far more popular than one could otherwise assume from looking at “popular” culture. For example- sexualized spanking and mild-to-moderate BDSM are far more popular than most people realize. Similarly other supposedly fringe practices like annalingus and female-to-male strapon sex are far more common in online porn than you would expect from immersing yourself in “popular” culture. So what is happening? Is depiction of these preferences and practices just another way to sell more porn? Or are they reflections of what people really want? In my opinion, it is mostly the later since it is really hard to keep on pumping out material without regard to audience engagement.

And this brings me to another observation about online porn. Incest themed online porn is just too widespread to cater to a small fringe audience. This is especially obvious in the era of online streaming porn, where incest-themed video clips keep popping up far more frequently than expected. Some of you might say that incest-themed porn is just a new way to push MILF or old-young porn. Well.. perhaps, but why push something in a way that makes it less valuable to a more conventional audience? Here is an analogous example- Would you repackage an expensive cut of meat as a supposedly less desirable cut unless there was a market for it.

What do you think? Comments?

  1. Wilson
    October 30, 2014 at 5:31 pm

    I never bought that the incest “taboo” was instinctual just because it is cross-cultural. But there is a common experience of seeing someone as too young or old, perceiving them in a non-sexual “zone”, or just being too familiar, which can happen with even non-relatives. The sex drive targets fertile interesting partners, which usually excludes family members, unless there are really zero other options. Scent could be a real biological factor in attraction, though I believe the science is mostly speculative.

    Incest porn of course is not porn of your actual relative, and there are other factors at play involving novelty, authority, role models, pedophilia, and God knows what. It’s a recognized phenomenon for people to choose mates similar to their parents, but this seems mostly emotional rather than acting out a repressed desire for your actual parent

  2. October 30, 2014 at 10:41 pm

    you gotta wonder about those HBD/race realist guys-they are sooooooo obsessed with staying within their own race. Maybe they are inbred…

    maybe C Rudd or Firepower????

    • Great Grimoires For Masons
      October 31, 2014 at 9:42 am

      Diaboli knows what he’s talking about. It’s how he came into this world…

  3. October 30, 2014 at 10:58 pm

    oh, yeah, here’s an image…

    yer boi roosh joining isis to finally get some head…

  4. Webe
    October 31, 2014 at 4:50 am

    Cousin marriage (with certain restrictions, mother or father’s side of the family) is the single most common pre-marriage relationship, anthropologically speaking. This is not illogical: anectodally many people have had their first sexual experiences (whether full on coitus or somewhat more sublimated forms) with first cousins or aunts, often at an age that sexual interest first wells up. This is not illogical, since close family time/visits are apt to happen between the parties, making the run-up to sexual contact easy. In addition, physical contact between family members is quite normal, whether running around to play, wrestling, or hugging, kissing, etc.
    We know that human-beings in close quarters (army, ships, jail, plantations, etc) will seek other outlets for sexual activity than what would otherwise not be their first choice: human-beings are polymorphically perverse, as Freud would put it. In previous ages such sexual outlets were expected and considered normal, even when unacceptable and punishable: No connection was made to some perverse or sick personality being revealed. In principle everybody was considered capable of all kinds of sexual activities (including homo-sexuality), it was just a question of not everything being permitted. We do not consider the temptation to rob a bank or steal money abnormal, just not permitted. It was the same with a lot of sexual expression that we today think about in terms of abnormal/normal.
    Restrictions on incest and bestiality illustrate that restrictions were in fact required. You will never encounter a religious law stipulating that women not abandon their infants or that parents take care of their children: the latter is too uncommon and deviant to require rules. The whole basis of Freud’s sexual theories is the sublimation and transferrence of incestuous infantile sexuality. Father/mother as erotic objects must be relinquished for others, since they are beyond reach. Freud connects the oedipal complex, fratricide and patricide to incestual erotic designs.
    Touching children, hugging them, rubbing them, etc is not only considered normal: it is detrimental if children do not receive physical affection. There is obviously a range of behaviour between physical affection and outright coital sex, but it seems rather obvious and natural that this is an integral continuum without any natural discrete boundaries. The incest revulsion does not seem instinctual. Even the Greek word “eros” does not connote something “sexually erotic” as we see it, but natural affection, and can be perfectly illustrated by the bond of physical affection between mother and child.
    It is true that children raised in close quarters (this applies to communes and kibutzim as well as siblings) tend to seek sexual partners outside their inner circle, but the fact that this extends to communes as well as to siblings (including homosexual brothers) means that such reluctance is not based on anything genetic or instinctual. Incidental incest is far less dysgenic than the public mind assumes (first generation incest with a sibling is unlikely to produce any signs of in-bred defects not already apparent). Expansion of the incest prohibition in medieval times to seventh degree family was based on the Church’s desire to counter the concentration of land, wealth and power in fewer and fewer hands, which was the explicit design of the aristocracy, and was unenforceable outside of marriages where inherited titles to land made the degree of kinship visible. The church was the avant-garde “Occupy Movement” of its time, as it were.
    Where do we find incest to be prevalent even in modern society? Why, among poor alienated criminally inclined families, that is, among people lacking proper socialization and prone to act on impulse and instinct. Does this mean we should abolish the prohibition on incest? No. It is good to discourage the sexual exploitation of children, especially by their father or mother. And it should be rigorously enforced, because as advocatus knows, nothing is more “natural” to human-beings than exploitation (if they can get away with it).

    • November 4, 2014 at 7:47 pm

      Restrictions on incest and bestiality illustrate that restrictions were in fact required.

      This is a very interesting comment, but it doesn’t necessarily follow from what we know. It could be the restriction (the incest taboo) was created to promote exactly the reaction you give: “it must be I want to F my mother, otherwise I wouldn’t be so harshly restricted from F’ing my mother.” A question remains: do you want to F your mother? Really? I don’t want to F mine, and I’m sure about that.

  5. joesantus
    November 2, 2014 at 8:32 am

    For consenting adults, prohibition of incest is no more rational than prohibitions against any other consensual sexuality. Any dysgenics question is moot with the availability of effective contraceptives. Hopefully, the negativity against incest between consenting adults will fade the same way negativity has faded toward premarital sex, non-marital sex, homosex, and bisex, which were also all once prohibited in Western societies..

    And, I re-emphasize, “between consenting ADULTS”.

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