Monday, 29 June 2015

Is Femdom a Neanderthal trait? Look at your toes.

If this is true, then I would expect, long term,
Femdom to turn out to be mostly a European thing,
People, especially poly folk, like to claim that Bonobos, being our cousins, are a better guide to ancestral human behavior than more violent patriarchal primates. Bonobos are basically furry-faced Femdom hippies:
Bonobo communities are peace-loving and egalitarian. Bonobos are considered to have a matriarchal society, meaning that females have a higher social status than males and social interactions are female-centered and female-dominated. Females have strong social bonds amongst themselves, but they do not exclude males.
One in the eye for evo-psych-touting red pill guys! It also provides a nice explanation for Femdom.

Only, alas, for most of history, most humans have not been like Bonobos. Men have mostly been nasty, war-mongering, status-obsessed, woman-beating, gay-bashing patriarchal pigs, and the woman have survived and accommodated that.

This leads to a knotty problem: Femdom seems bizarrely unlikely, because a million years of patriarchy. However, Femdom seems pretty well hardwired for some people, with practitioners often reporting an interest in D/s dynamics from an early age.

It's easy to imagine Femdom pairings happening on the quiet, despite the backdrop, but much much harder to imagine a Femdom track spontaneously evolving in humans.

And yet, it really does feel hardwired.

Where might a Femdom "gene" have come from? Not from the Bonobos! However, it turns out, humans interbred with two other species; Neanderthals and a Mystery Species tagged "Denisovans".

We already know that Neanderthal genes can affect not just our physical health, but also our propensity for nicotine addiction. Why not also our sexual orientation?

There's an old theory that Neanderthals were among other things matriarchal and that their culture has left an echo in our folklore.

So a really neat explanation - for which there is not as yet any actual evidence! - is that Femdom is a Neanderthal trait, or at least the product of a Neanderthal trait for Female dominance colliding with the Homo Sapiens trait for muddling sex and violence.

If this is true, then I would expect, long term, Femdom to turn out to be mostly a European thing, basically following a distribution like this:

A genetic explanation might explain how vanilla couples sometimes simply fall through a Femdom hole. Perhaps we Neanderthals are good at picking each other out based on scent or other clues.

Speaking of which, do you have Neanderthal genes? Allegedly, you can find out by looking at your feet. Is your second toe the same size or larger than your big toe?

Or, a better definition:
If the space between your first and second toe appears to be deeper, not wider, but deeper than the space between your second and third toes
Mine is...

If Femdom is your destiny, use my manuals to help you walk that path! There's one for him, and one for her

Sunday, 14 June 2015

Where does Femdom come from? My personal theory

Why Femdom?
Every so often, we ask ourselves, why Femdom?

Why us?

Anecdotal evidence on forums certainly supports D/S as an innate orientation. Most kinksters - like most gays and lesbians - seem to report an interest in their preferred dynamic from a pre- sexual age (see links here).

Where do female dommes come from?

...a scold looks pretty much like
an oppressed domme to me.
It does seem odd that after millennia of patriarchal gender roles - whether through nature or nurture - the human race produces a significant minority of female dommes.

When you look closely at history, this oddness is however an illusion.

Certainly in historically recorded Western culture, there has always been a sense of a battle of the sexes - e.g. you see it in legal cases in Ancient Athens, and in the punishment of "scolds" in early modern Europe, and in humorous illustrations and stories, e.g. Chaucer.

Put it this way.

You don't for instance, need a scold's bridle unless you first have a scold, and a scold looks pretty much like an oppressed domme to me.

Courtly Love
Men controlled the law and the government, had a virtual monopoly on domestic violence, and still there was a battle of the sexes.

I think this means that not only have women have been resisting oppression for a long long time, but also that sexual dominance is innate and particularly strong in some individuals regardless of the cultural context.

When the culture allows it, the Femdom comes out of the woodwork.

Examples include Roman women keeping male slaves for pleasure and more, and the Medieval ideal of Courtly Love and its Arabic equivalent - though to what extent ladies made real knights jump through hoops, serve and suffer is not clear.

Modern Femdom simply allows dommes (and subs) to be themselves, much as liberal legislation does for gays and lesbians who however have always been there.

Modern Femdom allows dommes
 to come out of the woodwork 
and be themselves
Now, if Nurture - culture and upbringing etc - doesn't explain female dommes, then we are left with Nature.

Going down the selfish-gene root, being a dominant female has obvious reproductive advantages in terms of access to protection and resources with the possibility of maintaining sexual autonomy.

We can imagine the extreme example of a pre-human female in primal times who keeps a male around to protect and help feed her and her offspring, but who tends to breed exclusively with the alpha males.

It also makes sense to regard female sexual dominance as something that can often be switched on by particular permissive circumstances, which perhaps suggests the runaway success some subs experience with formerly vanilla partners.

The real mystery, then, is where do the male subs come from?

Where do male subs come from?

...editing himself out of
the gene pool. What is
going on?
Male submissives often experience their orientation as innate. However, clearly, male submission in its most extreme form confers no direct reproductive advantage; the chaste cuckold who waves his wife off to be impregnated by her "bull" might feel totally fulfilled, but is pretty much editing himself out of the gene pool.

What is going on?

One way of looking at this is to borrow from genetic explanations for male homosexuality; the reproductive benefit applies to the gene, not the individual.  

So, scientists have observed that gay men often have very fertile sisters. The implication is that the hypothetical gay gene passes so effectively from mother to many daughters that it doesn't matter that the sons don't breed.

Similarly, there is a theory that being a little bit gay makes you very attractive to women and thus more likely to breed; in a nutshell, gay men have brothers with large families.

Perhaps being a little bit submissive 
makes you better at courtship
So, imagine there is a "male sub gene".

Perhaps male subs have hot sisters. Perhaps being a little bit submissive makes you better at courtship. It doesn't matter if one son ends up as a happy cuckold, because the daughters or other sons, depending on the theory, reproduce successfully to offset this

The link could also be totally obscure, and apply only to a lost corner of our primal history. Perhaps male subs are better at smelling the approach of sabertooth tigers?

Another - and not mutually exclusive - approach is to consider specific fetishes - cuckolding, boots, chastity, cross-dressing etc - as merely culturally-determined expressions of the desired underlying dynamic.

Perhaps, before the advent of modern contraception and chastity devices, male submission was actually an effective breeding strategy? (NB not a conscious strategy, rather something that results from instincts and urges. Anytime we talk about evolutionary psychology, we have to be careful to distinguish between personal subjective motivation and why nature "favors" a behavior.)

...when a modern young man puts
himself in the "friend zone" 
Male submission could be a good way of adding a extra reproductive years to a primal male's short life. Girls mature a few years ahead of boys. Teenage boys are fertile, but usually too weedy to stand up to the adult males or - in primal times - to win an adult female's attention through dominance display.

Perhaps submission once translated as being very agreeable and compliant in the "hope" of mating a couple of times. The years would be a reproductive write-off anyway, so there would be no real cost to hanging around laying siege to a potential mate.

young male subs are often
drawn to angry young
That would explain why some men adopt vanilla submissive stances as teenagers, the classic being when a modern young man puts himself in the "friend zone" (a status almost always self inflicted by the man, by the way).

It would also explain how men acquire submissive fetishes - it's easy to imagine eroticising the experience of girls being justifiably mean to you (I certainly did), and that then becoming a fetish.

However, it does not explain how submission could be a life-long orientation identifiable in pre-sexual stages. Not all kids play at tying up!

Nor does it explain why young male subs are often drawn to angry young women.

Ultimately, what's left is that male submission is really good for pairing off with a female dominant!

Femdom roles seem innate in
some people.
If that's true, then primal proto-Femdom couples must have been at least as good as breeding as their vanilla peers.

Final thoughts

In the end, all this speculation is no more useful than any other parlor game.

It doesn't tell us how to do Femdom better, and all that's required for us to feel better about our orientations is the thought at the start of this blog entry: Femdom roles are probably innate in some people. 

Just because something is natural, doesn't mean it's good or compulsory. However, it does mean that it is a fact of life.

Since Femdom does no harm, it follows that we might as well relax and focus on how to enjoy it, rather than where it comes from.

Don't resign yourself to just getting off on other people's adventures! When we started out, my wife was vanilla. Use my manuals to help you walk the same Femdom path! There's one for him, and one for her