The courier man delivered an exciting package from Mighty Ape yesterday :)
The first book is Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity by Bruce Bagemihi, PhD.
I first became aware of this book during my Gender Studies paper at the beginning of last year. I wanted it back then, but time went by and I forgot all about it. My Sociology paper this semester reminded me about it, and I wasn’t going to let myself forget this time!!
It’s full of great tid bits of information, like how male giraffes prefer the company of other male giraffes, and how male ostriches will put on a much more elaborate mating dance for other male ostriches compared to those they put on for female ostriches.
There’s also an examination of the different types of family groups and coupling that goes on within the animal kingdom. Coupling doesn’t always mean the grouping of two in this instance, there are occurrences of pairs, triads, quads and more throughout the kingdom. There are also many instances of homosexuality, bisexuality, transsexuality, transgender, omnisexuality, non-monosexuality etc.
This is the quote that first piqued my interest:
The scientist gasps and drops the binoculars. A notebook falls from astonished hands. Graduate students mutter in alarm. Nobody wants to be the one to tell the granting agency what they’re seeing.
A female ape wraps her legs around another female, “rubbing her own clitoris against her partner’s while emitting screams of enjoyment.” The researcher explains: It’s a form of greeting behavior. Or reconciliation. Possibly food-exchange behavior. It’s certainly not sex. Not lesbian sex. Not hot lesbian sex.
Six bighorn rams cluster, rubbing, nuzzling and mounting each other. “Aggressosexual behavior,” the biologist explains. A way of establishing dominance.
A zoo penguin approaches another, bowing winsomely. The birds look identical and a zoogoer asks how to tell males and females apart. “We can tell by their behavior,” a researcher explains. “Eric is courting Dora.” A keeper arrives with news: Eric has laid an egg.
It’s a fantastic satirical look at Communist Russia, with Stalin and Trotsky being characterized as Napoleon and Snowball the pigs. They lead a revolution against the drunken Mr Jones of Manor Farm. The civilians of Russia are shown as the other farm animals.
If you haven’t read this yet, I strongly advise that you do. You won’t regret it.
All animals are equal but some animals are more equal than others.