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that this disgust is inhibited. If, however, among savages the sexual
impulse is habitually weak, and only aroused to strength under the impetus
of powerful stimuli, often acting periodically, then we should expect the
_horror_ to be a factor of considerable importance.
The weakness of the physical sexual impulse among savages is reflected in
the psychic sphere. Many writers have pointed out that love plays but a
small part in their lives. They practise few endearments; they often only
kiss children (Westermarck notes that sexual love is far less strong than
parental love); love-poems are among some primitive peoples few (mostly
originating with the women), and their literature often gives little or no
attention to passion. Affection and devotion are, however, often
strong, especially in savage women.
It is not surprising that jealousy should often, though not by any means
invariably, be absent, both among men and among women. Among savages this
is doubtless a proof of the weakness of the sexual impulse. Spencer and
Gillen note the comparative absence of jealousy in men among the Central
Australian tribes they studied. Negresses, it is said by a French
army surgeon in his _Untrodden Fields of Anthropology_, do not know what
jealousy is, and the first wife will even borrow money to buy the second
wife. Among a much higher race, the women in a Korean household, it is
said, live together happily, as an almost invariable rule, though it
appears that this was not always the case among a polygamous people of
European race, the Mormons.
The tendency of the sexual instinct in savages to periodicity, to seasonal
manifestations, I do not discuss here, as I have dealt with it in the
first volume of these _Studies_. It has, however, a very important
bearing on this subject. Periodicity of sexual manifestations is, indeed,
less absolute in primitive man than in most animals, but it is still very
often quite clearly marked. It is largely the occurrence of these violent
occasional outbursts of the sexual instinct--during which the organic
impulse to tumescence becomes so powerful that external stimuli are no
longer necessary--that has led to the belief in the peculiar strength of
the impulse in savages.
 Thus, Lubbock (Lord Avebury), in the _Origin of Civilization_, fifth
edition, 1889, brings forward a number of references in evidence of this
belief. More recently Finck, in his _Primitive Love and Love-stories_,
1899, seeks to accumulate data in favor of the unbounded licentiousness of
savages. He admits, however, that a view of the matter opposed to his own
is now tending to prevail.
 See "The Evolution of Modesty" in the first volume of these
 The sacredness of sexual relations often applies also to individual
marriage. Thus, Skeat, in his _Malay Magic_, shows that the bride and
bridegroom are definitely recognized as sacred, in the same sense that the
king is, and in Malay States the king is a very sacred person. See also,
concerning the sacred character of coitus, whether individual or
collective, A. Van Gennep, _Rites de Passage, passim_.
 Spencer and Gillen, _Northern Tribes of Central Australia_, p. 136.
 _Religion of the Semites_, second edition, 1894, p. 454 _et seq._
 _History of Marriage_, pp. 66-70, 150-156, etc.
 _Golden Bough_, third edition, part ii, _Taboo and the Perils of the
Soul_. Frazer has discussed taboo generally. For a shorter account of
taboo, see art. "Taboo" by Northcote Thomas in _Encyclopaedia Britannica_,
eleventh edition, 1911. Freud has lately (_Imago_, 1912) made an attempt
to explain the origin of taboo psychologically by comparing it to neurotic
obsessions. Taboo, Freud believes, has its origin in a forbidden act to
perform which there is a strong unconscious tendency; an ambivalent
attitude, that is, combining the opposite tendencies, is thus established.
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