(polyamory public domain)
By Spencer D Gear
Linda Kirkman, a PhD candidate of Latrobe University, Melbourne, Australia, wrote this article, “Poly is the new gay“. She began with this statement:
“Keeping up with social change is exciting, and important. There is a growing awareness of polyamory [group sexual relationships] as a way to form relationships and families, and it is on the frontier of social change in acceptance of relationships. The more aware and accepting of diversity in relationships the more healthy our society is” (emphasis added).
Historically, this is an inaccurate statement.
The Macquarie Dictionary’s definition for the third edition of 1997 is that monogamy means “marriage of one man with one woman”. J. D. Unwin of Cambridge University did his study (in the 1920s) on the historical and sociological understanding of marriage. His conclusion from the evidence was:
“The whole of human history does not contain a single instance of a group becoming civilised unless it has been completely monogamous, nor is there any example of a group retaining its culture after it has adopted less rigorous customs. Marriage as a life-long association has been an attendant circumstance of all human achievement, and its adoption has preceded all manifestations of social energy…. Indissoluble monogamy must be regarded as the mainspring of all social activity, a necessary condition of human development”.
I refer you to Unwin’s works: “Monogamy as a Condition of Social Energy,” The Hibbert Journal 25, no. 4 (July 1927); no. 100, 662–77; and “Marriage in Cultural History,” in The Hibbert Journal 26, no. 4 (July 1928), no. 104, 695–706.
Kirkman has given this example:
The Australian newspaper ran a story on November 20, 2010, Three is the new two as couples explore the boundaries of non-monogamy, about a poly family of two women and a man who are having a baby. The writer, Emma Jane, used pseudonyms for the family, presumably to protect the people against discrimination, but wrote a supportive and positive article about this family’s normal and thoughtful existence, and about the growing emergence of polyamory worldwide. I hope it won’t be long before people in poly relationships don’t feel the need to protect themselves with pseudonyms. A same sex couple having a baby would no longer feel the need to hide their identity in this way. I look forward to a society where any loving family, irrespective of how many people it includes or what sex they are, feels safe to be open about who they are. [The Australian article may be found at, “Three is the new two as couples explore the boundaries non-monogamy”.]
In that respect, poly is the new gay.
Kirkman has given a modern interpretation, not a historical perspective. Unwin’s research demonstrated that the promotion of group loving relationships/sex is not the way to a more healthy society. Monogamy, one woman for one man for life, is the way to a healthy society, not Kirkman’s promotion of polyamory (consensual non-monogamy). The fact that polyamory is not even included in the third edition of The Macquarie Dictionary of 1997, indicates that it is a term of modern invention – dare I say, political correctness and promiscuity.
Bill Muehlenberg has exposed the dangers of group sex / polyamory in “Three cheers for polyamory”. For an article in support of heterosexuality, as opposed to homosexual marriage, published by The Australian newspaper, see Bill Muehlenberg’s, “Heterosexual marriage is society’s bedrock”.
Copyright (c) 2014 Spencer D. Gear. This document last updated at date: 9 October 2015.