Chapter

The Monogamy Gap

Eric Anderson

in The Monogamy Gap

Published in print February 2012 | ISBN: 9780199777921
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199919062 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199777921.003.0009

Series: Sexuality, Identity, and Society

The Monogamy Gap

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This chapter explicates and applies cognitive dissonance theory to monogamy, examining how humans behave when they want something they don’t want. It then elucidates how men think, feel and behave once they recognize this dissonance before seeking biological evidence which supports human beings being hardwired into this very troublesome dissonance. This is described as monogamism. The chapter explains that monogamism carries serious implications for these participants, because those inclined to resolve the tension of the monogamy gap seek to conform to the hegemonic ideal of monogamy, and control their biological sexual urges; reifying, naturalizing, and shoring up monogamy’s dominance in the process. When the monogamy gap gets too great, most participants creatively, shamefully and secretly rectify the tension of the monogamy gap through clandestine cheating.

Keywords: cognitive dissonance theory; monogamism; dyadic dissonance; monogamy gap

Chapter.  6591 words. 

Subjects: Social Psychology

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