Incest Is Best?

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Maximus otter,

Cryer isn't talking about the situation in Keighley, she is referring to the situation in the UK as a whole. Her personal experience is in Keighley though.

Dan from Sydney responded with the following gem..

..The statement that Ann Cryer wants the practice "outlawed" suggests to me that Cryer is a crass politician with little understanding of her role within the community...

I can tell you Dan, that Mrs Cryer was very attuned to the goings on of the Asian community in Keighley. And is a long way from being a crass politician.

INT21
Keighley is an odd place though.

 
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Naughty_Felid

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I dunno, my family are still scandalised about my marrying a Congleton man. I told them, at least he's not from Macc!
(That's a local joke. Congleton and Macclesfield are ancient rivals and have awful things to say about each other.)

You never told me that! storms off to drink bitter over the other side of the working mens club.
 

Ermintruder

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Do we have any DNA-based evidence to show, accurately, how familially-close the prodgeny of early hominids was? Clearly, back in the phenotypical 'Adam:Eve' era (I speak metaphorically) it would've been impossible not to have mated with one's cousin. But to what extent did the earliest higher primates mate (or not mate) with their direct siblings &/or parents?

I perceive (subjectively but confidently) that sub-tribal troupes of agglutinates (proto-societies....cf "gangs"/groups/virtual villages) would've generated the primal taboo of kinship match-mating (or, the reverse route to this effect).

Creation of allure, the attraction of the compatible unfamiliar, and the rejection of the familial nest, must've been massive drivers in the creation of societal structures and motivational priorities: gearing that drives Us all now, as strongly as it did a million years ago.

Countries, clubs, towns, commerce....virtually all of the interworkings of society must originate from these harem/hatchery love-or-loath (or, loath-then-love....or love-then-loath) bond-groups.

If I state the obvious, I do so from a wood:trees / blinded-by-evidentiallity perspective. If this has been properly researched, and written-up as popsci, I'm unsighted on any good titles or authors. Comments? Or even better, recommendations?
 

EnolaGaia

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Do we have any DNA-based evidence to show, accurately, how familially-close the prodgeny of early hominids was?
The short answer is 'No'. The evidentiary base is too sparse - i.e., too scattered across space (geography) and time to provide any clues about aggregates' status in any single, much less any series of, spatio-temporal settings.

Clearly, back in the phenotypical 'Adam:Eve' era (I speak metaphorically) it would've been impossible not to have mated with one's cousin. But to what extent did the earliest higher primates mate (or not mate) with their direct siblings &/or parents?
It's still a matter of speculation / supposition. I'd say it's a fair bet that the earliest hominids had a high degree of homozygosity (shared descent from a common ancestor).

One always hears of the danger in excessive homozygosity being the increased occurrence of deleterious recessive traits trickling down through bloodlines sufficiently similar to allow those traits to appear more frequently.

There's a seldom mentioned flip side to this, though ... One can also make a case that homozygosity promotes preservation of beneficial mutations (e.g., resistance to particular diseases).

This means it's probably useless to consider the situation in terms of genetics and traits alone, because the same scenario can be claimed to work in both (positive / negative) directions. It would seem that environment and selection pressures have to be accounted for somehow.

Check this 2010 overview article:

Bittles and Black, Consanguineous Marriage and Human Evolution, available online at:

https://www.researchgate.net/publication/222109119_Consanguineous_Marriage_and_Human_Evolution

These authors touch on an interesting point ... The currently presumed great migration(s) (e.g., 'out of Africa') during which humans spread around the planet involved hunter-gatherers who ranged widely and encountered other groups / tribes of increasingly different bloodlines. In other words, consanguinity may have been less of an issue during this period.

Consanguinity doesn't seem to have become a problem big enough to warrant rules and proscriptions until humans settled down into populous fixed locations. Even then, sibling marriage persisted among the Egyptian ruling class through the first millennium BCE. Meanwhile, some cultural groups (e.g., in the Levant - see Leviticus ... ) laid down rules barring marriage / interbreeding among close relatives. It appears to have been the Romans who first forbade first cousin marriages as a matter of legislation rather than religious doctrine.

I don't believe there's much chance of our ever knowing much about the historical specifics. This is a matter of population genetics, and we simply don't (and IMHO will never ... ) have a sufficiently comprehensive evidence base upon which to examine any ancient - much less prehistoric - population.
 

maximus otter

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l once read that, before the invention of the bicycle, people tended to marry someone who lived within 600 yards of their home. The advent of velocipedes increased that distance to 1,600 yards.

There must be a thesis in there somewhere: “Mount a Raleigh, not your sister: Sibling or cycling in Regency Norfolk.

maximus otter
 

INT21

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Ramonmercado.

..Keighley is an odd place though...

In what way. I can't resolve the image you provided so can't put it in context. Maybe a link to it ?

INT21
 

Cochise

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When I was at Bangor University in the mid to late 80s, certain families from Bethesda would shamble into town occasionally. It was fairly obvious that they were, er, close-knit.
Certain valleys around here are known as duelling banjo territory. And indeed there does seem to be a much higher number of people with obvious genetic problems than where I grew up - a town that basically had only existed for a hundred years so pretty much everyone was a newcomer in genetic terms.

It is astonishing (to a townie) how what valley you come from is still so significant. After all, we aren't talking the Great Rift valley - some of these towns / villages are only a couple of miles apart as the crow flies.
 

Cochise

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I dunno, my family are still scandalised about my marrying a Congleton man. I told them, at least he's not from Macc!
(That's a local joke. Congleton and Macclesfield are ancient rivals and have awful things to say about each other.)
My wife's Scottish family were scandalised by my wife marrying me. There could be multiple reasons for that though. ;)
 

INT21

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Thanks for the links.

Tricky blighters, fish pies.

But one of my favorite foods.

I was once put in the A&E at Airedale Hospital due to a bad reaction to a tin of ox tail soup. But it was bought in Skipton.

Skipton is not quite the end of the world; but on a clear day you can see it from there.

I do, as you have probably guessed, live in Keighley.

INT21
 

Ascalon

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Just read Adam Rutherford's book on genetics and human history and the way he describes the adroitly engineered collapse of the Hapsburg dynasty is quite staggering. But even it, relying on first cousin marriages and uncle/niece matches does not compare to the likes of the dynastic Egyptian families where brother sister matches were very common.

The downward spiral of lack of diversity, combined with compounded recessives over generations is devastating.

This is hard to reconcile with all the cases of reunited blood siblings, and even parents and offspring, where on being reunited, romantic developments ensued.
 

INT21

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If you go right back to the beginning (swinging from trees, knuckle dragging ancestors) and believe in Darwin then it appears to follow that at one time there were only a very few people about. So incest must have been the order of the day.
If inbreeding produces idiots, this may account for the sad state of our world today.

We are all brothers and sisters.

And the Adam and Eve story doesn't help much either.

INT21
 

Mythopoeika

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If you go right back to the beginning (swinging from trees, knuckle dragging ancestors) and believe in Darwin then it appears to follow that at one time there were only a very few people about. So incest must have been the order of the day.
If inbreeding produces idiots, this may account for the sad state of our world today.

We are all brothers and sisters.

And the Adam and Eve story doesn't help much either.

INT21
That's probably true.
We are closely related to Bonobo chimps (perhaps our closest relative in the animal world) and they display all of this behaviour.
 
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Incest in the UK appears to be under-reported.

A team of researchers has found a way to gauge the rate of extreme inbreeding (EI) in the U.K. and its possible health repercussions. In their paper published in the journal Nature Communications, the group describes their study of data from the U.K. Biobank and what they found.

The researchers began their study by noting that not a lot of research has been done surrounding EI, which they define as reproduction between people that are closely related, such as siblings or aunts or uncles. They note that EI is considered taboo in most societies, and is very often outlawed. This has led to limited information on the topic. To learn more about EI in the U.K., the researchers turned to the U.K. Biobank, which contains information from approximately 450,000 voluntary participants, all of whom have European ancestry.

In sifting through the data in the Biobank, the researchers looked at genetic information, specifically, for large runs of homozygosity—an indicator of close family ties between parents. They report that they found 125 cases of individuals who they believed were the product of inbreeding—a rate of one in 3,652. That number differs significantly from police incest reports, which show a rate of one in 5,247.

The researchers then looked at the health histories of those individuals and compared them with people in society at large. They report that they found that such individuals were at a slightly higher risk of a variety of health effects. They were on average slightly shorter, were less smart, and were less able to reproduce. They also were more likely to have lung function problems and were more likely to contract diseases than the average person.

https://medicalxpress.com/news/2019-09-extreme-inbreeding-uk-health-impacts.html
https://forums.forteana.org/javascript%3Avoid(0)
 

balding13

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I'm sure that I have asked before, but does anyone know the seventies New Zealand film where a teacher moves to an isolated rural school and becomes obsessed with the belief that his predecessor was murdered? His suspicion that the parents of one of his pupils are responsible ends in tragedy.
 

AlchoPwn

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Incest in the UK appears to be under-reported.
Under-reported in the UK? You should get a load of Turkey LINK, the level of 1st cousin on 1st cousin marriage is literally killing their children with birth defects because it has been going on for so many generations LINK. I personally know of a 1st Cousin marriage Turkish girl who gets brain damage from eating meat because of genetic defects caused by inbreeding.
 

blessmycottonsocks

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I reckon the late great Philip José Farmer described it most eloquently in his brilliant Riverworld saga:

"Consider this. Each generation of your ancestors, going back in time, doubles its number. You were born in 1925. You had two parents, born in 1900. (Yes, I know you were born in 1923 and your mother was forty when she bore you. But this is an ideal case, an average.)

Your parents' parents were born in 1875. That makes four. Double your ancestors every twenty-five years. By 1800, you have thirty-two ancestors. Most of them didn't even know each other, but they were "destined" to be your great-great-great grandparents.

In 1700 a.d., you have five hundred and twelve ancestors. In 1600 a.d. 8192 ancestors. In 1500 A.D., 131,072 ancestors. In 1400, 2,097,152. In 1300, 33,554,432. By 1200 A.D., you have 536,870,912 ancestors.

So do I. So does everybody. If the world population was, say, two billion in 1925 (I don't remember what it was), then multiply that by the number of your ancestors in 1200 A.D. You get over one quadrillion. Impossible? Right.

I just happen to remember that in 1600 the estimated world population was five hundred million. In 1 a.d. , it was an estimated 138,000,000. So, the conclusion is obvious. There was a hell of a lot of incest, close and remote, going on in the past. Not to mention the present. Probably from the dawn of humankind. So, you and I are related. And, in fact, it may be possible that we're all related, many times over. How many Chinese and black Africans born in 1925 were distant cousins of you and me? Plenty, I'd say."
 

Mythopoeika

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I reckon the late great Philip José Farmer described it most eloquently in his brilliant Riverworld saga:

"Consider this. Each generation of your ancestors, going back in time, doubles its number. You were born in 1925. You had two parents, born in 1900. (Yes, I know you were born in 1923 and your mother was forty when she bore you. But this is an ideal case, an average.)

Your parents' parents were born in 1875. That makes four. Double your ancestors every twenty-five years. By 1800, you have thirty-two ancestors. Most of them didn't even know each other, but they were "destined" to be your great-great-great grandparents.

In 1700 a.d., you have five hundred and twelve ancestors. In 1600 a.d. 8192 ancestors. In 1500 A.D., 131,072 ancestors. In 1400, 2,097,152. In 1300, 33,554,432. By 1200 A.D., you have 536,870,912 ancestors.

So do I. So does everybody. If the world population was, say, two billion in 1925 (I don't remember what it was), then multiply that by the number of your ancestors in 1200 A.D. You get over one quadrillion. Impossible? Right.

I just happen to remember that in 1600 the estimated world population was five hundred million. In 1 a.d. , it was an estimated 138,000,000. So, the conclusion is obvious. There was a hell of a lot of incest, close and remote, going on in the past. Not to mention the present. Probably from the dawn of humankind. So, you and I are related. And, in fact, it may be possible that we're all related, many times over. How many Chinese and black Africans born in 1925 were distant cousins of you and me? Plenty, I'd say."
I blame Noah for this kind of thing.
 

INT21

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Well, if everyone in the World except those on the ark were drowned then it sort of is logical.

Difficult to argue against it.
 

INT21

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A TED talk I was watching a few nights ago posed this scenario.

A brother and sister wondered what it would be like to have sex.

I'm in the pill, she said. Yes, but I'll use a condom anyway; says he. Best to be safe.

So, they do the deed. And agree that it was quite enjoyable. But they agree not to do it again.

The presenter then asked the audience 'what is the problem with that ?'

'Could have lead to the birth of a mentally damaged child'

No, two forms of contraception were used.

'Sex with a minor is illegal'.

No, they were both consenting adults.

'It could lead to sex slavery.'

No, they agreed that they would not do it again.

'It's Illegal'

Not in France, They were in France and French citizens.

So, it is not easy to find a really serious problem when the above is taken into consideration.

It appears to just boil down to traditional morality.

Would I do it (if I was French ) ?

Dunno, I don't have a sister.

INT21

;)
 

maximus otter

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Consanguineous marriage is not a good thing for any resulting kids.

The elephant in the room is the fact that it is disproportionately common among British families of Pakistani/Bangladeshi origin, where there's a centuries-old tradition of cousin/cousin marriage.

A recent Waily Fail article summarises several research projects, and some anecdotal information, into a feature that doesn't make comfortable reading.

maximus otter
 

escargot

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A TED talk I was watching a few nights ago posed this scenario.

A brother and sister wondered what it would be like to have sex.

I'm in the pill, she said. Yes, but I'll use a condom anyway; says he. Best to be safe.

So, they do the deed. And agree that it was quite enjoyable. But they agree not to do it again.

The presenter then asked the audience 'what is the problem with that ?'

'Could have lead to the birth of a mentally damaged child'

No, two forms of contraception were used.

'Sex with a minor is illegal'.

No, they were both consenting adults.

'It could lead to sex slavery.'

No, they agreed that they would not do it again.

'It's Illegal'

Not in France, They were in France and French citizens.

So, it is not easy to find a really serious problem when the above is taken into consideration.

It appears to just boil down to traditional morality.

Would I do it (if I was French ) ?

Dunno, I don't have a sister.

INT21

;)
The incest taboo is not about individual cases where two rational adults can choose to use contraception etc though. One reason it's there is for the protection of more vulnerable family members from predatory ones.

So if the above conversation were between, say, an aunt or uncle of 35 and their niece or nephew of 16 (let's not bring underage sex into it) it would be blatantly exploitative.
 
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