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Heinlein on Monogamy

September 18, 2012

Excerpted from Stranger in a Strange Land, by Robert Heinlein:

“The code says, ‘Thou shalt not covet thy neighbor’s wife’-and the result? Reluctant chastity, adultery, jealousy, bitter family fights, blows and sometimes murder, broken homes and twisted children…and furtive, dirty little passes at country club dances and the like, degrading to both man and woman whether consummated or not. Is this injunction ever obeyed?…I wonder…Any male virile enough to sire a child is almost certainly so virile that he has coveted many, many women-whether he takes action in the matter or not…’There’s no need for you to covet my wife…love her. There’s no limit to her love, we all have everything to gain-and nothing to lose but fear and guilt and hatred and jealousy.’ The proposition is so naive that it’s incredible.”

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