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Old 03-05-2010, 07:01 AM
SchrodingersCat's Avatar
SchrodingersCat SchrodingersCat is offline
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Default polyamorous social convention: Neanderthal Parallax

Just wondering how many people have read Robert J. Sawyer's trilogy, "Neanderthal Parallax" ? It's awesome fiction for poly folk.

It's a sci-fi, but if you don't like sci-fi, please hear me out first!

Some scientists from an alternative universe accidentally open a portal into our universe. In that universe, Neanderthals became the dominant species on Earth and humans were extinct.

Now here's where it gets interesting for us: Bisexual polyamory is the social convention.

Each person has a male and female partner. They live with their same-sex partner most of the time, but on a socially dictated schedule, they go live with their opposite-sex partner. Mothers raise the children up to a certain age, after which boys go live with their dads.

One thing that was neat, since they have a very keen sense of smell enabling them to detect hormones, all the women are on the same menstrual cycle. *giggles* needless to say, this is when the men steer the hell clear! Also, because their cycles are synchronized, they've also synchronised child birth. The time of the month when they trade partners prevents pregnancies, except for every 7 years, when all the women get pregnant in the same month. I guess it also would mean that all the kids go through their terrible twos at the same time, but they don't talk about that. I should mention that they aren't "forced" to have children, it's just that if they do want them, they can only do it every 7 years.

Another interesting aspect of the book was how they dealt with violent crime. They wore monitoring devices that record every second of their lives, stored in a private locked vault, so they had perfect evidence of any crime. If a person was convicted of a violent crime, then anyone who shared 50% of their DNA was sterilized. It seems a little eugenic, but I can see the logic of it.

So as my grade 8 French teacher used to say, "Checkez ça out"
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