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Early Humans and Samesex Desire

26/12/2021

The Christmas commercial for Audible, the audio books platform, includes an interesting twist on a gay couple when two male Neanderthal mannequins at a museum are seen to be holding hands whilst we hear an audiobook extract on queer culture in the past. Neanderthals were closely related to modern European humans, and in fact most people in Europe contain some Neanderthal DNA. With evidence for culture, and sexual culture, notoriously difficult to come by for the distant past, we have to rely on circumstantial genetic and behavioural evidence. Many writers on early humans agree that contemporary traits such as proportion of people preferring relationships with the same sex, can be inferred for past populations, with back up evidence coming from animal behaviour and anthropological studies. Even so, the presence of the two Neanderthal gay men is a welcome reminder of the presence of our people though time and through human populations.

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Neanderthal Humans
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