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Is monogamy a feature of advanced cultures that emphasize a person’s individuality? I mean cultures that treat someone as person and not as an anonymous part of something else, e.g. nature or a tribe.

closed as too broad by Denis de Bernardy, AllInOne, Pieter Geerkens, SJuan76, KillingTime May 29 at 19:57

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    Are you asking if monogamy only appears in "advanced cultures that emphasize a person’s individuality"? – Steve Bird May 29 at 13:01
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    What research have you done? From memory, I the the concept of the individual is a modern concept, so the question is a tautology. – Mark C. Wallace May 29 at 13:09
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    Monogamy exists elsewhere in the animal world. See e.g. geese. There's nothing specifically human about it. – Denis de Bernardy May 29 at 13:27
  • I mean that man in the effort to complete his ego is devoted erotic only to one person and not to many other. – liontass May 29 at 13:42
  • what are you talking about... are people monogamous now? – sofa general May 29 at 19:15
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The standards for inter-gender relations appear to be a deep cultural thing. As such, it tends to go hand-in-hand with language family, which means the root of the differences probably go back to a time when pretty much everyone was operating in the Mesolithic ("Stone Age")

Indo-European cultures tend to a strict one-to-one marriage, with offspring from pairings outside that system not being considered legitimate.

Afro-asiatic cultures tend to a one (male) to many marriage system, where male offspring are accorded status by birth order (regardless of mother).

Chinese cultures have a middle-ground between these two poles, where a man can have more than one wife, but the senior wife and her offspring have elevated status.

Tibetian culture traditionally went instead toward Polyandry (or in rare cases involving no male heirs polygamy), with all male children having equal status.

Mongolian culture had strict binary marriage, like the Indo-Europeans, but all male children got close to equal status, with the youngest being slightly advantaged, getting undividable things like the father's title and actual tent location. The Ancient Mongolians would probably claim they were indeed more "advanced" than their Chinese neighbors, but I suspect the Chinese would strongly disagree. In writing.

I'd caution anyone against picking out a cultural feature that happened to be used by the winners of the Age of Imperialism and trying to find a reason why that one is somehow better. This isn't anything more than Survivorship Bias.

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    I have a few doubts about that reasoning when it went from cultural (agreed) to language (?) Southern and Eastern Indo-European branches seem nonconforming to this theory? Anatolian, Persian, Tocharian? Anyway, a few more sources would be welcome… – LangLangC May 29 at 14:39
  • @LangLangC - Cultures are messy, so its obviously not a hard-and immutable law of nature. Just a tendency. Languages and marriage customs are simply two components of a culture that a people don't give up easily. For example, technically Chinese and Tibetian are part of a single Sino-Tibetian language family. So if you want to be hyper-technical about it, the whole thing falls down there. But that doesn't change the fact that the two things tend to go together. – T.E.D. May 29 at 15:37
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    Also in many societies norms were different for the elites and everyone else. – Steven Burnap May 29 at 17:32
  • This answer is likely wrong IMO. Even in cultures where it's nominally allowed for men to have multiple wives, few men actually have more than one. I'd be willing to bet that one observes a similar outcome for wives in cultures that (if only nominally) allow for women to have multiple husbands. And from an anatomical standpoint we're a far cry from chimps. – Denis de Bernardy May 29 at 17:37
  • @DenisdeBernardy - I'm missing where that (quite factual) statement intersects the text of this answer. – T.E.D. May 29 at 20:36

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