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The Monogamy GapMen, Love, and the Reality of Cheating$
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Eric Anderson

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199777921

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199777921.001.0001

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The Hardening and Softening of Men

The Hardening and Softening of Men

(p.37) 4 The Hardening and Softening of Men
The Monogamy Gap

Eric Anderson

Oxford University Press

This chapter provides some of the historical circumstances of the era that monogamy emerged in, and the conservative type of masculinity produced as a result of the industrial revolution. Most importantly, this chapter shows that being a man throughout the 20th century was predicated in misogyny, homophobia, violence, and domination of women. Thus, this was an era in which polygamy was replaced with monogamy; women increasingly maintained some legal rights, but men nonetheless felt a privilege to rule over them. Accordingly, some argue that men learned to cheat as a result of proving their heterosexuality, enacting their power over women, and reproducing patriarchy. However, this chapter also dispels this as a reason for the cheating examined in this study. It does this by showing that undergraduate men look much more favorably upon women than previous generations. Thus, misogyny is not the primary reason men cheat.

Keywords:   masculinity, misogyny, cheating, patriarchy, homophobia

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