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Title: Sex At Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What it Means for Modern Relationships
Author: Christopher Ryan & Cacilda Jetha
Genre: Human Sexuality, Anthropology
Pages: 401
Format: Kindle E-book
Amazon Price: $10.49

In 2010, the “standard narrative” of how relationships should be, and what they stand for was questioned. A journey into mankind’s history of human sexuality was tied to modern relationships and argued whether or not monogamy or polygamy was the standard idea.


Sex at Dawn is an analogy that challenges studies and theories as well as the historical and modern definition of the evolution of human sexuality.

The 401-page book was written by American author Christopher Ryan and his psychiatrist wife, Cacilda Jetha.

Together the authors dissected the “standard narrative” and resulted in the conclusion that primitive humans were not monogamous and engaged in intercourse with multiple partners without the fear of paternity.

To back up their theory Ryan and Jetha furthered their analysis from the study of chimpanzees relating to humans to Bonobos, who are known to have sex for pleasure.

The study led the authors to believe our ancestors had a better narrative which defined relationships. Throughout history, many cultures didn’t face current relationship problems as the western world does today. For example, jealousy, monogamy, parenting structures, and marriage structures were all challenged in Sex at Dawn.

Ryan and Jetha went back and forth between cultures around the world to support their newfound narrative for relationships that have been practiced by many cultures for centuries. The authors’ intentions are not to change the mind of their readers’ belief of what relationships should and shouldn’t look like, but to inform them of other ways people understand relationships because the ” standard narrative” that is practiced in the western society does not work for everyone.

My Thoughts:

I really enjoyed reading Sex at Dawn. It was an easy read with lots of information, which made me conduct further research throughout the reading, for a better understanding of the studies the authors referenced to support their findings.

I initially read the book because I thought it assumed it was about the history of sexual relationships. While that was somewhat covered in the book, I believe it delivered a better message. The title can be quiet deceiving, and I think sharing this with someone I would have to tell them what it is about first so they won’t be as surprised as I was.

Although the 2010 novel was an easy read for me, some people might get a little confused due to the writing style of Sex at Dawn. There is a lot of back and forth throughout the book between the past and today. There are also times throughout the reading where everything is written in order.

In summary, I recommend the book to someone who enjoys learning about what studies can lead to,  researchers, and students who need more historical information about how the “standard narrative” of relationships came about.

~ This is not a paid review. You can support more book reviews by purchasing from my Amazon link.

<a href="http://""” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>Kindle Price: $10.49

© Krystle In Bed. 2018. All Rights Reserved

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