Male Chauvinism and a Misunderstanding of Sexual Dimorphism

  • Susumu Ohno
Part of the Monographs on Endocrinology book series (ENDOCRINOLOGY, volume 11)


As a species, man is a study in contradictions. Having evolved as brachiating apes in pre-Pliocene forests, he tried a new way of life in the emerging savanna as a hunting ape and succeeded in becoming omnivorous. Yet his teeth are still designed for the grinding of grains and leaves only, and ill-fit for the seizing of prey. While retaining and even accentuating sexual dimorphism, he abandoned the practice of polygynous matings and became monogamous. In the humid heat of pre-Pliocene forests, he was a hairy ape. Yet he became a “naked ape” prior to his territorial expansion to the temperate zone with cold winters. Because of a congenital deficiency in de novo synthesis of vitamin C, men of the temperate zone used to suffer through long winters for the want of fresh fruits. Such contradictions are abundantly evident in human behavior as well. Institutionalized followers of the Man who preached to turn the other cheek, tortured and burned fellow beings by branding them as heretics. Knowing the total futility of infantry charges against an entrenched nest of machine guns, those charges were repeated all the same throughout the First World War, causing the loss of millions in the flower of their youth.


Sexual Dimorphism Female Progeny Masculine Trait Holstein Bull Territorial Expansion 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin · Heidelberg 1979

Authors and Affiliations

  • Susumu Ohno
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Biology, City of HopeNational Medical CenterUSA

Personalised recommendations