A New York Times bestseller in both hardcover and paperback.
One of NPR’s Favorite Books of 2010.
Winner of the 2011 SSTAR Consumer Book Award (Society for Sex Therapy & Research), and the Foundation for the Scientific Study of Sexuality’s Harriet and Ira Reis Theory Award in Sexology for 2011.
A Best Book of 2010 (Audible.com).
“The single most important book about human sexuality since Alfred Kinsey unleashed Sexual Behavior in the Human Male on the American public in 1948.”
— Dan Savage
“Funny, witty, and light . . . the book is a scandal in the best sense, one that will have you reading the best parts aloud and reassessing your ideas about humanity’s basic urges well after the book is done.”
“[Sex at Dawn] helps put the ‘human’ back in ‘human sexuality.’”
— AASECT (American Association of Sexuality Educators, Counselors and Therapists)
On an almost daily basis we are inundated with stories about the collapse of the latest celebrity marriage—and infidelity is almost always the cause of the break up. Is it even possible for two people to stay together happily over an extended period of time? Since Darwin’s day, we’ve been told that sexual monogamy comes naturally to our species. But it doesn’t, and never has.
Mainstream science—as well as religious and cultural institutions—has long maintained that men and women evolved in nuclear families where a man’s possessions and protection were exchanged for a woman’s fertility and fidelity. But this narrative is collapsing. Fewer and fewer couples are getting married and divorce rates keep climbing while adultery and flagging libido drag down even seemingly solid marriages.
In SEX AT DAWN, renegade researchers Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethá debunk almost everything we “think we know” about sex.
Ryan and Jethá show how our promiscuous past haunts our current struggles regarding monogamy, sexual orientation, and family dynamics. Some of the themes they explore include:
• why long-term fidelity can be so difficult for so many;
• why sexual passion tends to fade even as love deepens;
• why many middle-aged men risk everything for an affair;
• why homosexuality persists in the face of standard evolutionary logic; and
• what the human body reveals about the prehistoric origins of modern sexuality
Ryan and Jethá show that our ancestors lived in egalitarian groups that shared food, child care, and often, sexual partners. Weaving together convergent, often overlooked evidence from anthropology, archeology, primatology, anatomy, and psychosexuality, the authors show how far from human nature sexual monogamy really is. They expose the ancient roots of human sexuality while pointing toward a more optimistic future illuminated by our innate capacities for love, cooperation, and generosity.
In the tradition of the best historical and scientific writing, SEX AT DAWNunapologetically upends unwarranted assumptions and unfounded conclusions while offering a revolutionary understanding of why we live and love as we do. A controversial, idea-driven book that challenges everything you know about sex, marriage, family, and society.
Paperback edition was released on July 5, 2011.
Sex at Dawn is available now in the U.S, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Finland, Spain, and Korea. Coming soon in Japanese, Chinese, Polish, Ukrainian, Russian, Romanian, Slovenian, Czech, and Albanian. If you know any publishers in Germany, France, Italy, or Portugal, tell them to get with the program already!
Check out Christopher’s blogs at Psychology Today and Huffington Post.
To say hello, request an interview or media appearance, please use the contact form on this site.