Polyamory.com Forum  

Go Back   Polyamory.com Forum > Polyamory > General Poly Discussions

Notices

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1  
Old 06-25-2010, 11:44 PM
sage's Avatar
sage sage is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 615
Default Recent Poly History?

Until last year I had never even heard of polyamory but my X and I had often discussed having an open marriage. It struck me as I was trying to write about having affairs on my blog that if we had had a decent understanding of polyamory we probably would have had a successful marriage.

Which got me to thinking about how long it has been around in its current form. I know there will have always been private arrangements but does anyone know how long it has actually been recognized?

According to Wiki there was research done in the early 80s, and there was all the 'free love' of the 60s and 70s but it was never called polyamory as far as I know.

Anyone?
Reply With Quote
  #2  
Old 06-26-2010, 12:20 AM
clairegoad's Avatar
clairegoad clairegoad is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Ozona, FL
Posts: 200
Default May 20, 1993

Okay, this is the kind of challenge that brings this lurker out of the woodwork...

The USENET group alt.polyamory was started in early 1993: The word Polyamory was not used on USENET before 1992. Here's an early reference, and discussion of word usage. This is an early time Polyamory is used on usenet (as far as the Google archives) was 5/20/1993. in the following post. There's not much geek speak.The poster is responding to an earlier question.

And the alt.polyamory FAQ is quite familiar to many on this forum. Apparently the questions are the same, the answers have changed, a bit, as clarifications have been needed.

(Google is choking for me right now... If you want, I'll post the FAQ... later..)

claire

References: <1993May18.204226.1875@midway.uchicago.edu> <C7C2Kq.B60@unix.amherst.edu> <1993May20.185703.478@midway.uchicago.edu>
<p...@midway.uchicago.edu>
writing in article <1993May18.204226.1...@midway.uchicago.edu>:
<>>can we come up with another term that doesn't mean polyamourous
<>>(many loves) but mean not monogamous?



Tim Pierce <twpie...@unix.amherst.edu>
writing in article <C7C2Kq....@unix.amherst.edu>:
TP>Isn't this one of the meanings of that old word, "polygamous?" Before
TP>someone decided to coin "polyamorous"?

Alan Jaffray <jaff...@dent.uchicago.edu>
writing in article <1993May20.185703....@midway.uchicago.edu>:
AJ> Actually, no, I don't think so. "Monogamous" has been taken, by a
AJ> twist of logic, from meaning "one wife" to meaning "one sex partner",
AJ> but "polygamous" (which logically *should* be the opposite) still has
AJ> the definite connotation of multiple wives. i.e., it's *stronger* than
AJ> "polyamory", not weaker.


From my on-line Webster:
po-lyg-a-my
1: marriage in which a spouse of either sex may have more than one mate
at the same time -- compare POLYANDRY, POLYGYNY
2: the state of being polygamous
po-lyg-a-mist n -- po-lyg-a-mize vi
poly-an-dry
[Gk polyandros, adj., having many husbands, fr. poly- + andr-, aner man,
husband -- more at ANDR-]
:the state or practice of having more than one husband or male mate
at one time -- compare POLYGAMY, POLYGYNY
poly-an-drous adj
po-lyg-y-ny
:the state or practice of having more than one wife or female mate
at one time -- compare POLYANDRY, POLYGAMY
So I think "polygamy" is indeed the word we want (or as close an
approximation to the word we want as our culture has permitted to evolve).
BTW, just as the Greek "andros" = "man" gives us "polyandry", so
Gk "gyne" = "woman" gives us "polygyny". The "gam" in "polygamy",
"monogamy", "bigamy", "gamete", and "gamosepalous" comes from
"gamos" = "marry" or "mate". Any union in which one takes but one
mate is "monogamous", with no twist of logic required. Having but
one wife would I suppose be "monogyny", but I don't know how to make
the affixes harmonize to make a decent word out of "mono-andry"
(any takers?).
I mean, after all, if we're going to be sicko perverted queers we can
at least be well-informed, literate sicko perverted queers with good
vocabularies, right? How else can we be precise about our aberrations? ;-)
== Aspen (who likes both men and women, but *loves* words!)

-------------------------------------------------------------------------
Reply With Quote
  #3  
Old 06-26-2010, 01:22 AM
sage's Avatar
sage sage is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 615
Default Thanks Claire

I appreciate your efforts. I'll check out the site.

just one thing about your reference: the guy seems to be saying that polyamory is just a weak off-shoot of polygamy.
Common usage and connotations of a word are much more important to me. Polygamy is an immediate turn off. It's illegal for one thing (i.e. being married to more than one person) so it starts off from a negative place. For me it brings up images of women in headscarves and long skirts all producing off-spring and taking day about with some controlling religious zealot. Or I suppose also the traveling salesman juggling a few wives in a few different cities who have no idea the other exists.

It seems we are creating a new paradigm?
Reply With Quote
  #4  
Old 06-26-2010, 04:11 AM
redpepper's Avatar
redpepper redpepper is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: Canada
Posts: 7,632
Default

'polyamory' is illegal in Canada as it is seen as "polygamy." The difference is religious in nature... in polygamy men take on young wives to add to their households because they believe it is their right... the women are not consulted and are often very young.

Big difference.

there is a thread on the court case going on etc...

http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=1204
http://www.polyamory.com/forum/showthread.php?t=2883

From what I know the word "polyamory" has been around since the early 90's... when I came out about 15 years ago it was just "non-monogamy" as far as I knew. I didn't know the word poly until 4 years ago.
__________________
Anyone want to be friends on Facebook?
Send me your name via PM
My blog
Reply With Quote
  #5  
Old 06-26-2010, 10:02 AM
sage's Avatar
sage sage is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Location: Melbourne, Australia
Posts: 615
Default wow I had no idea

That's really interesting and concerning. Am I reading it correctly that you are not legally allowed to live in a sexual relationship with more than 1 person? It seems really unfortunate that you are having to work with polygamists just to be left alone to live as you please.

We have legal civil unions here in New Zealand now for homosexual couples and legal protection for de facto couples after a few years. I suppose having legal rights for polyamorous partners is another step down that path.
Reply With Quote
  #6  
Old 06-30-2010, 02:23 PM
SourGirl's Avatar
SourGirl SourGirl is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: South of an Igloo, North of a Desert.
Posts: 885
Default

I first heard 'Polyamory' as a label in 2001. My husband and I were 'bad' swingers, because we had 2 couples we were exclusive with, and did things outside of the bedroom. Our kids hung out, we had them around our families, friends, 'feelings' were involved, etc.

I, like Redpepper, always refered to myself as 'non monogamous',...Then someone in a swingers chatroom called me a polygamist, and someone else corrected them, and said I was polyamorous.
I tend to shy away from labels, and stayed with the 'non monogamous' until this past year.

I do know when I was first 'labeled' I looked it up, and found information and writings, from the early 90`s and onward. I didn`t pay to much attention at the time though. Wish I had.
Reply With Quote
  #7  
Old 06-30-2010, 02:44 PM
MonoVCPHG's Avatar
MonoVCPHG MonoVCPHG is offline
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2009
Location: In Redpepper's heart
Posts: 4,742
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sage View Post
Am I reading it correctly that you are not legally allowed to live in a sexual relationship with more than 1 person? .
It's also illegal just to watch a polyamorous union ceremony if you look at the details of the law.
__________________

Playing the Game of Life with Monopoly rules.
Monogamy might just be in my genes

Poly Events All Over
Reply With Quote
  #8  
Old 06-30-2010, 03:24 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,828
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by MonoVCPHG View Post
It's also illegal just to watch a polyamorous union ceremony if you look at the details of the law.
:O...does that also mean its illegal to watch group sex...oh my ...there sure seem to be a lot of people breaking the law...
Reply With Quote
  #9  
Old 06-30-2010, 04:32 PM
Edward Edward is offline
Member
 
Join Date: May 2010
Posts: 40
Default

In defense of polygamy....

It's illegal (now) in most WESTERN countries. By Shar'ia (Islamic religious law) it is permitted (although monogamous relations are also acceptable by religious doctrine, and more socially acceptable these days).

The marrying of very young women (often socially/psychologically coerced) is technically wrong under most religious codes, although that rarely stops men from doing it. (I will point out that from a historical perspective, women in Western countries often married young; you were an 'old maid' if you weren't married or engaged by 19-20!)

It's safe to say that only the most dramatic cases get media coverage. A polygamous relationship (legal or not) where the women are equal in the marriage to the man and everyone is happy is unlikely to get reported to the authorities. It would be more correct to say that polygamy is one type of polyamorous relationship.

A term for the concept 'polyamory' (where the multiple men/women are equal partners in the relationship) seems to be fairly new. (As opposed to the idea itself, which I suspect may be rather old.)

Polyandry, although rare even historically, did occur (Mongolia, I think).

In short, every single possible type of relationship possible between men and women (and men and men, and women and women...) has been tried at some point in human history. Different societies have regarded different types of unions as 'natural' and others as 'forbidden'.

What polyamory is doing now is confronting a societal belief that this type of relationship is 'wrong'. Opposing commonly-held beliefs always results in conflict and controversy.
Reply With Quote
  #10  
Old 06-30-2010, 04:38 PM
Ariakas Ariakas is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: Dec 2009
Posts: 2,828
Default

I think the bigger difference is the removal of a gender bias within the context of a relationship definition. Polyandry and polygamy assign a role to the genders which implies a lack of choice.

Polyamory does not. There are no gender roles, in fact no set rules to design. There are endless configurations possible, straight, LGQBT etc. Its a big step forward and far easier to accept and explain than the gender restricted variations. You still find polygamy in the world of poly...but it doesn't need to be defined that way.

Thats my take anyways.
Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT. The time now is 09:16 PM.