More on bonobos

Recently, I did post a youtube video of our cousins having one of those moments of dispute resolution or is it ending group tension. There is this post here that presents some interesting studies of what goes on in the bonobo kingdom. 

The author has very interesting views on the human race. For example he writes

Throughout these little narratives, we enjoy looking back smugly at capitalized Nature and in particular the other primates—the chimpanzees, the gorillas, the orangutans—to marvel at the superiority of our evolutionary state and the hideous detritus we left behind on our way upward. Among the many signposts in our smooth, progressive arc away from all the fur, tails, and knuckle dragging is the ennobling shift to marriage and monogamy. We possess a higher sense of spiritual grace in our couplings, we are told, not merely because we have escaped the primal rut that defines the life and death of other mammals, but also because this lofty claim to love prevents society from collapsing into what the Puritans would have called a seething pit of sin and debauchery. But what if even that noble tale is, like the heroic epic of the mammoth hunter, a kind of Pleistocene PR spin, obscuring a sex life that, truth be told, is far more frisky, kinky, promiscuous, and hilarious than our cover story suggests.

And for those religious people who claim that homosexuality is unnaturally should think again, am not saying they have been thinking but just giving them a benefit of doubt. He writes

Bonobos also shocked these earliest scientists because they possessed a cheerful sense of general promiscuity, weaving wanton sex into their society, and they boasted a sexual repertoire once thought to be the exclusive property of Homo sapiens—deep kissing, foreplay, oral sex, homosexuality, and polyamory.

And he thinks the bonobos would outdo the Indians if there was to be a contest to rewrite the Kamasutra. Consider this about their sex positions where he writes;

No description, academic or otherwise, can quite do justice to the comedy that is bonobo sex. On a hilarity scale of one to ten, most animal sex trends quickly toward ten. Bonobo sex goes to eleven. Throughout the day, males and females, adolescents and elders alike greet one another sexually for apparently almost any reason—and do so with everything from a quick feel, to porn-style choreographies, to elaborately athletic couplings.

and continues to say further

The sheer variety of bonobo sex puts the Kamasutra to shame and Savage-Rumbaugh is at her wit’s end trying to taxonomically describe the numerous positions of standing, sitting, prone, upright. Coming up with distinctions can be fatiguing when, for instance, one of the favored bonobo positions can only be described this way: the “male would at times thrust briefly during a ventro-dorsal prone bout then, while maintaining intromission, begin to walk, pushing against the female with his pelvis and moving her across the ground as she lay on her back, sometimes turning her in a complete circle before pausing to resume thrusting.” What to call that one?

If that is not enough to make you read the article, I hope this 

In any human boy’s development, there comes a moment when he jokes with his friends about how weird it would be if instead of shaking hands, we just walked up to one another and handily rubbed each other’s crotches. Everybody laughs—that’s crazy. But that’s essentially what the bonobos do. Human society is replete with displays of near intimacy and suggestive touching. We have developed customs of opposite-sex and same-sex hugging and kissing, handshaking, and back patting. And all of them serve as tokens of affection, perhaps with some subtle intimation that the encounter might develop into something else. Bonobos essentially went there and then kept going. On the long arc of sexual development as primate culture, maybe we’re the missing link on the way to bonobos.

will be enough nudge to go over and read the article.