If there is no inbreeding, what is wrong about it? Why does society perceive incest as bad?
If there is no inbreeding, what is wrong about it? Why does society perceive incest as bad?
It is simply one of those obsolete taboos, no longer applicable in the modern world - juust like homosexuality taboos. That is the scientific answer, not what I really think about it.
I find the thought of sex with close family disgusting, and with my nihilistic and rebellious nature i can assure you it has nothing to do with taboos, tradition, ethics or morals.
Im not sure about the scope that lies under incest. Could someone explain to me how close family must be to be considered incest? Or if i have misunderstood the term? As i know it incest is sex with a person you are related to, simple as that.
I do for example consider my cousin attractive, and other relatives farther out. But again, any close family sexual relationship - that i find repulsive. Though i dont know if this is biological or because if its something ive been taught.
Whether it is wrong or not, we should not interbreed as this will give rise to genetic mutations. As the people reproducing will have similar genes, the flaws in the genetic code will be amplified as there will be less variety. Its the same sort of flaws that are associated with asexual reproduction and there is reduced variety in the gene pool. Therefore the species would not be adapted to any major change in the environment.
Whether you think it does or not, it does.Originally Posted by Raziell
You missed the part of the question that said "if there is no inbreeding."Originally Posted by CrimsonViper
here is a good link on it
but incest is not hardly harmful if you have less then about 12.5% or less of genetic relation in fact it would probably not be noticeable.
For the Americans: Without inbreeding there would be no one living in Arkansas.
For the British:Without inbreeding there would be no one living in Norfolk.
For everyone else: Make your own jokes.
Or Mississippi, Tennessee, Louisiana, and the other states in that immediate vicinity.Originally Posted by Ophiolite
It is very awkward and uncomfortable for two relatives to approach any kind of sexual intimacy. Say for instance if someone was to sleep with their sister then she would no longer be their sister anymore, she would be a lover. Basically the death of her to the brother and the death of the brother to her.
I can understand why certain people will let it happen though, the kind of love you get in family is more over consummate love. (I studied this once in Psycholgoy; the three types of love). So there is a complete love involved and that can lead to sexual feelings.
Personally speaking, no one in my family is attractive to me. I do flirt with my sister but that is it, its fun, and naughty but I would never let it go any furthur, no matter how appealing Norfolks countryside looks.... 8)
The exception is that in other primates we do generally see an aversion to incestuous relations between siblings, parents and offspring. It also tends to be culturally universal, unlike homophobia.
Anyway, I care less if consenting adults want to have incestuous relations.
What's the difference between Mick Jagger and a Scotsman?For the Americans: Without inbreeding there would be no one living in Arkansas.
For the British:Without inbreeding there would be no one living in Norfolk.
For everyone else: Make your own jokes.
Mick Jagger say's "Hey you, get off my cloud".
A Scotsman say's "Hey McCloud, get off my ewe".
Researchers have shown that living together closely inhibits sexual attraction, if that living together begins at a very young age. It goes way beyond just brother and sisters, or cousins.
I remember as a child, I went to a small country school, and I saw the same kids day in and day out for 10 years. When I got my hormones and started noticing female figures, I still found the girls I grew up with rather unattractive. When I went to secondary school at 13, and saw lots of girls who were strangers, suddenly my hormones went crazy! In absolute terms, the gals I had seen from childhood every day were, no doubt, just as sexy as the new ones I saw, but not to me!
So it seems as if natural selection has introduced an inhibition against having sex with gals you grow up with - hence not having sex with sisters. There are heaps of case histories of brothers and sisters being raised apart and ending up as lovers after they meet. Without the daily contact when very young, the inhibition against sex does not exist.
The problem with the 'logic' in post 1 of this thread is the fact that preventing reproduction is not guaranteed. Hence all the unmarried teenage girls in our society. If a brother and sister were to become lovers, there is still a strong possibility they would have a kid - a genuine little monster.
Overall, the prohibition of incest is excellent, and should be continued.
Couldn't we use the same logic to reason that prohibitions against homosexual sex were in part due to the spread of sexually transmitted disease, and that preventing such disease is not guaranteed by the wearing of a condom (any more than preventing an inbred child), therefore the prohibition is excellent and should be continued?Originally Posted by skeptic
The flaw in your logic is the idea that spreading of disease is solely through homosexual contact. Most STD's are mainly spread by heterosexual contact.
I didn't say it was solely through homosexual contact. Heterosexual sex is a risk that is necessary for the propagation of the species. If STDs are mainly spread by heterosexual contact, that's probably because there are more heterosexuals. Besides, it could be the deterrent effect of the taboo which still remains to an extent and prevents rampant promiscuity.Originally Posted by skeptic
Now do you really have any evidence that incest would produce a "monster." As far as I know, the kid could turn out perfectly normal, maybe with some additional risk of certain diseases.
I have also read about instinct as the basis for this inhibition, and it seems that it allows for a more robust combination of genetic material in the offspring for evolutionary purposes.Originally Posted by skeptic
I would guess that various social norms, mores and taboos developed from this instinct. For example, social taboos such as incest, mores such as the traditional Aboriginal marriage system involving classes (aka ‘skin names’), legal statutes on the degree of consanguinity in a marriage, and so on.
However, exceptions existed in history, such as brothers and sisters marrying and having offspring among the ancient Egyptian royalty.
Effects of incest according to Wiki
I quote :
"In many cases incest is also inbreeding. Inbreeding leads to a higher proportion of congenital birth defects through an increase in the frequency of homozygotes. The effects of this can diverge - recessive genes that produce birth defects could become more frequent, resulting in a higher rate potential of these defects while genes that do not code for birth defects can become increased within a population. The overall consequences of this divergence depends in part on the size of the population. In small populations, if children born with heritable birth defects die before they reproduce the ultimate effect of inbreeding will be to decrease the frequency of defective genes in the population with an overall decrease in the number of birth defect-causing genes over time. In larger populations it is more likely that large numbers of carriers will survive and mate, leading to more constant rates of birth defects. A 1994 study found a mean excess mortality with inbreeding at the first cousin level of 4.4%. At any rate,the degenerative effects of inbreeding will only be significantly fatal after more than two or more repeated incest cases, and that varies depending on the number and quality of inherited congenital disorders of which the family members may be carriers."
Okay, I think the parallel between homosexual taboo and incest taboo is still holding up pretty well. Both are based on instinct, for the majority of people. Risk of both can be mitigated with modern medical science. Nobody is talking about generations of inbreeding. In fact, it was specified up front that there would be no inbreeding. How about sterilization, or abortion? Would that overcome your prejudice?
Harold - This is a specious claim rooted in little more than flawed logic. Considering that every animal we've ever observed in the animal kingdom has been witnessed to engage in homosexual behavior, the suggestion that this behavior's taboo is instinctual falls rather flat.Originally Posted by Harold14370
I welcome evidence in support of your contention. Should I be holding a misconception on this issue, I'd like to correct it. However, until some sort of reasonable evidence is put forth that the taboo against homosexuality is anything more than taught... based on social learning as put forth by Bandura at Stanford... I will continue to reject your suggestion as not reality based.
People are taught what to hate... people are taught what is taboo. This is not something we are born with. We do not pop out of the womb calling people faggots and throwing rocks at their heads. If you disagree, then it's time to come with the big guns and put forth some evidence that finding homosexuality taboo is based on our biology more so than (or instead of) our society.
Who's throwing rocks and calling people faggots? I said it's based on instinct. The instinctive attraction to the opposite sex for most people. Now, where are you saying it differs from the taboo against incest?
Was I unclear above?
It was clear, but pointless. The discussion is about whether there is a fundamental difference between incest taboo and homosexual taboo.Originally Posted by inow
It was argued above that social norms, mores and taboos against incest developed from an instinctive aversion to sex between persons living together from a young age. I am suggesting that taboos against homosexuality could develop in a similar manner from an aversion to having sex with persons of the same sex.
Right, and I'm suggesting that this is wholly unfounded and requesting you provide evidence in support. Are you willing or able to do so? If not, that's fine, but a retraction and some back-peddling would be in order if that's the case.Originally Posted by Harold14370
I am quite willing to retract it. I will also retract the statement that the incest taboo is based on genetics, which you didn't seem to have a problem with.Originally Posted by inow
Appreciate it. Thanks.
Just to recap, no evidence has been offered that hatred and taboos against homosexuality are genetic in nature, and the most likely explanation thus far available is that this is taught and based on the environment in which one is reared.
Harold also makes a fair criticism that we have yet to see evidence that taboos against incest are genetic in nature. Although, I think it's important to note here that incest very often results in genetic abnormality, and for that reason alone would have tended to be selected against. In short, lower survival rates among those who bred more closely than the survival rates of those who sought diverse sexual partners. This logic extends beyond humans, and across the animal kingdom. As many know, sexual selection itself evolved due to the greater chance at survival offspring are provided when bred in this manner... instead of something like cloning and other asexual selection mechanisms. Sex itself helps to ensure a diverse gene pool which could survive many events, and sex with different partners of different types leads to diversity. Even studies show that we tend to be attracted to people who have immune system qualities which we do not... Attracted to people with traits we lack... So, unlike the claims above that taboos against homosexuality are genetic in nature, there exists at the very least a compelling case that there is a genetic predisposition against breeding with members of the family who have genes too similar to your own.
But yeah, evidence on that would be nice to see, as well.
As suggested by others, since not all mutations are bad, inbreeding is also not automatically bad for the species.Originally Posted by CrimsonViper
I mentioned the research that showed lack of sexual attraction between males and females who are raised together. That suggests a genetic mechanism to prevent sex between close relatives. It would be very difficult for evolution to come up with an inhibition between close relatives, since such inhibitions need a triggering stimulus. What stimulus would be specific to a close relative, yet broad enough to affect the whole species? Much simpler to evolve an inhibition to sex with those with whom we are raised.
Agreed. Along similar lines, I also found myself thinking of the preference we exhibit for variety in sexual partners. However, I realized that point fell a bit flat since it tends to be more male specific, and also only represents the median male at that.
The point which caused me to enter this thread... the point I sought to challenge... was that taboos against homosexuality were somehow genetic in nature. That's wrong. That's mistaken. In all honesty, I haven't fully thought through the incest arguments yet, so I'm a bit ill-equipped to present a meaningful argument one way or the other in that particular arena.
Me too, I couldn't care any less either. To each, his/her own.Originally Posted by i_feel_tiredsleepy
Yeah, I think that's it. So then, if one girl is raised in a household full of males, is she more likely to be lesbian? Because she grew overaccustomed to males generally and finds females interesting?Originally Posted by skeptic
Sometimes I've thought we develop our sexual attractions haphazardly, as how goslings follow the first moving object they see. Evolution rarely hard-wires well-defined instincts. It is easier to lay a modest cue, plus capacity of mind to intensify that through feedback. Anecdotally, my early teens seemed more determined to find the attraction in anything than to already know what I found attractive.
I speculate that gays have this attraction feedback working perfectly well, only they happened not to follow the (subtle) heterosexual cue early on. If so then there is no "gay gene"; rather queers lack the straight wiring and freely deviate in any way, though usually fixing on an ordinary object.
The mechanisms that lead to homosexuality in women and men are likely different from each other.
Anyway, Pong you seem to be applying the Oedipal argument of psychosexual development proposed by Freud, which hasn't held up under objective analysis. Although, I agree that there is nothing deterministically hardwired about human sexuality, in the sense that there is a 1:1 correlation between a certain gene and certain sexual behavior. There is clearly a great deal of interaction between environment within the womb and during childhood development that is involved.
Also, in my early teens I was more than fully aware of homosexual attraction, I can count the erotic dreams about women I had as a teen on one hand. Moreover, I made a deliberate attempt to try and be attracted to women, including dating them throughout high school, and it didn't work.
To reiterate my opinion on the thread topic, incestuous relations between consenting adults are none of the state's business and people should be free to do whatever they like.
I didn't speculate on framework of specific inclinations. I suggested that whatever frameworks individuals have, are vague cues that start the inevitable snowball (puberty) rolling in one direction or another. A "queer" then is a normal snowball (feedback) without guiding framework.Originally Posted by i_feel_tiredsleepy
Maybe some people are specifically homosexual by design, as straights are supposed to be by design? I don't think we can call such people "queer". Since they're following a path, not ploughing their own. I think incest must be in the queer category.
To my mind, "queer" could even play out straight as a Quaker - a lawless person often finds lawful behaviour most expedient anyway. Personally, I've always been queer. I could get into anything. Puberty drove me to get into something.
Agreed the state has no business in the bedrooms of the nation. However IMHO the nation - comprised of families and society - has business in family and social relations. Our business is to see children develop well, see grandpa cared for in his old age, and to "multiply picnics". Society shouldn't reward people for opting out, and might reasonably discourage unions that excuse couples from contribution.
Can incest benefit family and society?
i have seen sex stories online where some r actually true accounts of incest sexual encounters between two relatives and in fact it brings those family members closer and doesn't change anything about their relationship and btw inbreeding is common in animals so despite the genetic problems it causes there isn't really anything wrong with incest
What is wrong people today.
I think incest is beautiful.
I can only hope that my children will look like that someday. I bet they have wonderful hearing.
Well, if we regard the question as applicable to Personality Psychology... The Environmental influences on our personality mostly come from an unshared environment (Environmental influences that are not familial in nature). So your tastes, interests, and preferences are greatly influenced by friends and life outside of your family. I wouldn't be surprised if that had a major impact on the norms of sexuality.
I'd say aversion has to do with a number of things:
1) The knowledge that offspring may be developmentally hindered. Bad offspring would suggest that family members are bad mates. Is bad mate selection taboo?
2) Your personality is predominantly influenced by non-familial bonds and experiences. Compatibility might be affected by this.
3) Is there a connection to evolution? If attraction is, in part, a question of genetics - the norm would obviously be influenced by what is most successful means of reproduction, as a genetic basis of attraction. Would this not create a majority that is predisposed to an aversion towards incest?
Just a few thoughts.
In fact, incest has been considered a reasonable thing in many societies at various times.
For us, I think the real objection is that, for most cases of incest, there is an age or power differential between the parties that affects what we'd normally expect of a consensual sexual relationship. Most of us would think badly of a busybody who told everyone that he'd discovered that a happily married couple turned out to be closely related. If they're happy, let them be.
However, as soon as we look at child-parent, child - older child the whole picture changes. The concept of "statutory rape" then becomes the usual attitude. It's rape because "consent" is not possible in much the same way as that same child cannot legally commit themselves to a financial obligation/ relationship. Their immaturity makes their apparent consent irrelevant.
While it is true a that all societies have an incest taboo, they do not have the same incest taboo. What is considered "incest"is culturally determined. The point about the precieved sexual unattractiveness of persons we have known closely in our household of origen is well taken. But it must not be over valused. There is an evolutionary advantage to a drive to be exogamous and seek a mate outside our family of origen, however it is easily over ridden by the drive to seek a mate. Evolutionarily it is far worse to have no offspring than it is to have offspring with a close relative.
There is also at least potential damage to the psycological development of the subordinate member of an incestious pairing.
Not necessarily. It is evolutionarily better to have healthy nieces and nephews who live long enough to reproduce than children of your own who die in childhood. Evolution is about passing on your DNA, not making babies.Evolutionarily it is far worse to have no offspring than it is to have offspring with a close relative.
ok my 4 cents. 4 not 2 cuz I'm awesome and from an area of the country where incest runs rampant. The thing is occasional incest is not likely to cause major genetic defects if any at all. Usually serious problems happen when you have generation after generation after generation marrying and conceiving to the point that someone ends up being their own brother, father grandpa and uncle at the same time. The Fugates of Kentucky are a famous incestuous family that are easily recognized by their blue skin. They weren't just dumb people who got hot for their aunties and their sisters. They were isolated high in the Appalachian mountains and weren't exactly able to mingle with other families very easily. The blue gene is fading in their family these days because they have relocated in recent decades and new blood is being brought into the family.
Papa Fugate.... omg he looks like my dad, only he's blue!!
Their family is still in existence and doin their thing, but with less incest. But the birth defect of blue skin obviously isn't killing them.
I think the aversion to incest is more political. We have an inclination to see safety in numbers, and alliances with other clans. What better way to seal an alliance with another clan than to intermarry with them.
Western societies not brought up under monarchs are very much into political alliances. Where societies accustomed to monarchies tend to be less trustful of alliances. While they will want alliances, they do not want a new bloodline on the thrown. Kings have a tendency to delude themselves that they can live forever in power so long as their own bloodline doesn't get tainted. So Princes would be wed to their own sisters or cousins in order to keep the thrown under the direct bloodline of the sitting king.
Many cultures developed in what could be considered mini-monarchies. Each man being the king of his own home. In Pakistan marrying a cousin, even a first cousin, is often preferred over marrying from outside the family. When the parents arrange marriages for their sons or daughters they like to know as much as they can about the prospective spouse. And what better way to know someone and what their personality may be like than if it is a family member they watched grow up from a distance. but a short distance. the parents of the future couple are siblings so they know they share the same values and in that they presume that their children will be able to bond over those shared values and have less conflict. They are also assured, that the parents of the other child will back them up and have a loyalty towards them if their child should go astray in the marriage. Honor killing is somewhat common in Pakistan.
If a man suspects his wife of being unfaithful he may kill her. However if his wife is also his cousin, he will face the wrath of his Aunt and Uncle if he kills their daughter, and it is likely that his parents rely on that aunt and uncle in many ways. Pakistani families are very cohesive. But if the man is married to some girl outside the family, she goes to be with his family and is then cut off from her own. Her family will no longer have any say in what goes on in their lives.
So marrying your daughter to her male cousin keeps her safe and close. Though if the families do this for too many consecutive generations, the children run the risk of a particular blood disorder similar to sickle cell anemia. I have googled like crazy trying to find the name of the disorder but can't find it. Last time I read about it was 8 years ago when I was explaining to my then brother in law (Pakistani) why I would not allow my son to marry his daughter. Being the most intelligent man of his family, he listened and concurred. But now I can't find the name of it or the articles.
As for why incest is wrong, there are moral and scientific explanations. Scientifically, incest limits genetic variations if there is breeding. Morally, we have just applied a taboo to it.
what if the persons involved in incest are close in age and/or over the age of consent also it is one thing to have certain taboo fantasies because the way i see it the more taboo something is the more it compels some people to want to break said taboos i'm sure everyone in this thread has had at least one fantasy about at least one relative and btw some people feel age matters not
what if we didn't continue three old threads.....
I see nothing wrong with necro-posting, if nothing else it could possibly bring up interesting topics that have been lost in the sands of useless threads.
They are much more difficult to moderate, because mods have to read the entire thread once again to get the context and follow the conversation when things start going haywire. In this case even the mods and admin were different and the site was under different guidelines.
Also, in this case as most necro-treads after years, the author (banned in this case) and original contributors are no longer with the forum. It's not joining a conversation at all and more like a conversation after dark in a cemetery.
Overall, it's much better to simply start a new thread and if current members are interested start a new conversation.
However, until very recently, it was natural for many children (regardless of who their parents were) to die in childhood simply because there weren't modern medical techniques to prevent this. Infant death, until recently, was the norm, not the exception. The more adults that can care for a child and provide resources for that child, the greater the chance that child can survive into adulthood. When children are competing with other children for care and resources, their chance of survival decreases.
For example, if you and your brother each have a child, you have two children competing for resources. In addition, you only have time to care for your one child. In a time of famine, it is possible that either or both children will die. On the other hand, if you have a child and your brother doesn't, your brother can help you raise your child. Your child can get twice as much food. Your brother can care for your child if anything happens to you. This means your child is much more likely to survive. Your brother also benefits evolutionarily, since his niece or nephew carries 1/4 of his genes. ( Google"kin selection"). Better to pass on 1/4 of your genes than no genes because your children, nieces and nephews don't survive - Of course, you and your brother can each have spouses or partners to help you raise your children; I was simplifying - two caregivers are better than one; four are better than two.
This concept has been used as a possible explanation for homosexuality and the fact that women lose the ability to reproduce at the end of their lives, the idea being that since they no longer have to care for children of their own, they can care for their children's children. (Google "grandmother effect").
Edit: Sorry for reposting on an old thread, but I thought I should respond to a post directed at something that I had posted.
Well I think it's wrong, it's a perversion, to me no different from necrophilia, bestiality, paedophillia or Rape. It is illegal and it should be. Forgetting any possible physical deformities that may result in children from such unions, there is the psychological damage it does. Not only does it fundementally change the nature of what should be close and loving but platonic relationships but also places exponents at the mercy of societies attitudes resulting in either disgust and ridicule from the public at large or in the exponents having to live lives of shame and secrecy. Most societies have spent hundreds if not thousands of years trying to refine moral and legal systems that deal with human sexuality in order to protect people from practices that are dangerous or have the propensity to cause harm, but it seems that whilst the morality and legality may very well be in place the education seems somewhat lacking if people can't really understand why things like this are wrong and dangerous.
Since I don't believe in right or wrong, I will just say i think its gross. With the exception of johnny depp.
Similarly, a culture that only recognises family relations through the female line wouldn't define sex with your father's brother as incest. (I am talking about non-Western cultures here.)
Last edited by Alec Bing; March 24th, 2013 at 06:21 AM.
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