Science Daily is presenting the Western take on culture. The Na, Maasai, and other groups show the wide range of relations in the world today. – carlos
ScienceDaily (Nov. 11, 2010) — In modern culture, it is not considered socially acceptable for married people to have extramarital sexual partners. However, in some Amazonian cultures, extramarital sexual affairs were common, and people believed that when a woman became pregnant, each of her sexual partners would be considered part-biological father.
Now, a new University of Missouri study published in the journalProceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has found that up to 70 percent of Amazonian cultures may have believed in the principle of multiple paternity.
“In these cultures, if the mother had sexual relations with multiple men, people believed that each of the men was, in part, the child’s biological father,” said Robert Walker, assistant professor of Anthropology in the College of Arts and Science. “It was socially acceptable for children to have multiple fathers, and secondary fathers often contributed to their children’s upbringing.”
Walker says sexual promiscuity was normal and acceptable in many traditional South American societies. He says married couples typically lived with the wife’s family, which he says increased their sexual freedom.