Re: Bastards--long

Neil Alasdair McEwan (
8 Sep 1996 21:30:18 GMT

Lars Eighner ( wrote:
: In our last episode <50k4vn$>,
: Broadcast on alt.folklore.urban,sci.anthropology
: The lovely and talented (Bryant) wrote:

: >I wonder if there are any ecological parameters that correlate with the
: >practice, which might be compared to those encountered by the North
: >American Sioux, who also practiced female/female marriage.

: Wrong question.

: The question is: what accounts for the absence of female-female
: marriage in cultures where it is absent?

: This is what I mean by pointing out the bias inherent in your
: questions. Apparently your culture is the norm and it is
: up to those that differ to explain themselves.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but your way of phrasing the question
doesn't seem any less biased than the one you responded to. All you have
done is shift the bias, assuming instead that female/female marriages are
the norm and that their absence is a deviation from that norm. In fact,
I'm not sure if there is such a thing as posing a question from an unbiassed or
"universal" perspective, is there? If there isn't, and if it is a
matter of choosing between different biases, we may as well at least
choose our own.

Le meas,

Neil A. McEwan

Disclaimer: I'm not an anthropologist, merely an anthropos.

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