In Washington, a U.S. Senate committee hears testimony about the polyamory threat to America. “The New Monogamy,” i.e. non-monogamy, takes off in the mainstream media. Polyamorous polygamists file a legal challenge in federal court and could actually win. Triads and quads “redefining love’s boundaries” are featured on TV evening news.
If you haven't kept up with Polyamory in the News in the last three months, here is some of what you missed:
** A boomlet is under way in the mainstream media: “the New Monogamy,” meaning committed primary couples who negotiate a degree of non-monogamy -- based on honesty, communication, and respect, with no pressure... one hopes. The New York Times Sunday Magazine is the biggest outlet so far to jump on the trend, citing Dan Savage as the model.
Savage is elsewhere called America’s most important sex ethicist. A New York weekly considers what straight couples can learn from same-sex couples about negotiating unconventional arrangements. Two new books on the topic are getting mainstream press, *Marriage Confidential* and *Unhitched*. And check out “Polyamory for Monogamists”.
All of this is creating a genuine national wavelet of buzz.
So why do I have a queasy feeling about it? There’s a big unspoken assumption going on: that radical, paradigm-breaking relationship forms will work just dandy for normals -- people who never examine their other old-culture paradigms about human relations, or the assumptions in which the rest of their lives are embedded. There is a reason why the 1970s open-marriage movement among mainstream, middle-class couples is widely remembered for disasters.
I say this having just spent ten days at the big Summer Camp East of the Network for New Culture. In the New Culture world, poly just seems to arise naturally for many people and functions with relative ease and low drama -- even though New Culture itself has nothing to do with whether a person chooses to be poly, mono, or celibate.
** Are mainstream advice columnists now the vanguard for poly awareness? Miss Manners addresses poly invitation protocol. Dear Prudence, Carolyn Hax, and Annie’s Mailbox weigh in thoughtfully on similar questions. And, readers of one of the world’s major newspapers treat a poly coming-out-to-family question very well.
** On TV evening news in a Republican region: “Polyamory: Redefining Love’s Boundaries,” with profiles of local family groups. Some viewers get quite upset.
** Poly*amorists* claim spotlight in the heart of Mormon country.
** On the pop culture front, Margaret Cho explains her poly life. And on MTV, “It’s not gay/ when it’s in a three-way”.
** “Love is like an ocean, not a bathtub,” explains The Beautiful Kind on a major feminist site.
** The slippery slope looms before the Senate Judiciary Committee. Or is it actually a stairway up?
** Meanwhile, the five “Sister Wives” stars challenge laws against polygamy (that are actually laws against cohabitation), and this time the polygamists could win.
** “Beyond Polyamory: Where is the line between optimism and denial?” An early founder of the poly movement tells some of where she’s at now, and why.
** Tales of poly awakenings. What’s your story?
** And more.
It's all here:
I've done 532 of these reports in the last six years, covering roughly 1,000 items in news media of all kinds. Archived entries are sorted by topic, date, and sometimes location and language. I hope you have as much fun browsing them as I do creating them!