Original Research

The biology of human sexuality: evolution, ecology and physiology

PW Bateman, NC Bennett
Verbum et Ecclesia | Vol 27, No 1 | a133 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/ve.v27i1.133 | © 2006 PW Bateman, NC Bennett | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 21 September 2006 | Published: 17 November 2006

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PW Bateman, University of Pretoria, South Africa
NC Bennett, University of Pretoria, South Africa

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Many evolutionary biologists argue that human sexual behaviour can be studied in exactly the same way as that of other species. Many sociologists argue that social influences effectively obscure, and are more important than, a reductionist biological approach to human sexual behaviour. Here,we authors attempt to provide a broad introduction to human sexual behaviour from a biological standpoint and to indicate where the ambiguous areas are. We outline the evolutionary selective pressures that are likely to have influenced human behaviour and mate choice in the past and in the present; ecological features that influence such things as degree of parental care and polygamy; and the associated physiology of human sexuality. Then they end with a discussion of ‘abnormal’ sexuality.


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