Clive Bromhall: Homosexuals are a pinnacle of evolution

From a talk by the zoologist and author of 'The Eternal Child', at the Edinburgh Book Festival
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The Independent Online

From men's obsession with swollen breasts to our constant search for a pseudo-parental God, everything about the human species is infantile. Like baby chimps we have soft downy bodies, flat faces and large rounded heads. Like them, we too want to be kissed, cuddled and stroked, and we remain playful, compliant and comparatively mild-mannered for the whole of our lives. So baby-like are we in adulthood that we even require sexual partners to double as both parent-substitute and sex object. Humans break all the moulds of normal primate behaviour.

I think for a large proportion of human evolution, females have been targeting males who retain an infantile dependence on the mother figure. Love is all about transforming our promiscuous ancestors into devoted husbands. This explains why women develop breasts as soon as they become sexually active - it is a clear maternal signal.

This theory also helps us understand homosexuality. For long periods in childhood we reject close relationships with members of the opposite sex in favour of close friendships with the same sex. If we retain youthful characteristics in adulthood, surely it's the case that homosexuals remain in this same-sex friendship stage?

We've known for years that homosexuality is linked to a playful, creative character. Homosexuals excel as artists, thespians and other playful, mimetic professions. Being playful is at the heart of being human. It's something that should be celebrated. You could say that homosexuals are at the pinnacle of human evolution.