Excerpt: “The evolution of odour preference
When we think about the evolutionary threats faced by our ancestors, we like to imagine sabre-tooth tigers and angry, spear-wielding tribesmen. In reality, a great deal of natural, and indeed sexual selection, was driven by the pervasive threat of communicable disease.”
My comment: Try to place the evolution of sexual preferences into the context of mutations and natural selection. For example, see: The Biological Basis of Human Sexual Orientation: Is There a Role for Epigenetics? For contrast, place the variations in sexual preferences into the context of how food preferences develop in all organisms. The Mind’s Eyes: Human pheromones, neuroscience, and male sexual preferences. Gay males do not seem to be mutated straight males, so how did they evolve? Do they naturally select each other?
p 210 ” James Kohl, an independent researcher who also markets “human pheromones” to the general public, believes that pheromones may have a primary influence in setting up a person’s basic sexual orientation. Other, more consciously perceived aspects of attractiveness, such as facial appearance, are attached to a person’s basic orientation through a process of association during early postnatal life, according to Kohl. 35″
p. 210 This model is attractive in that it solves the “binding problem” of sexual attraction. By that I mean the problem of why all the different features of men or women (visual appearance and feel of face, body, and genitals; voice quality, smell; personality and behavior, etc.) attract people as a more or less coherent package representing one sex, rather than as an arbitrary collage of male and female characteristics. If all these characteristics come to be attractive because they were experienced in association with a male- or female-specific pheromone, then they will naturally go together even in the absence of complex genetically coded instructions.”
The model also is attractive since it explains the “bonding problem” of sexual attraction that plagues some relationships. Bonding among heterospecifics versus conspecifics is nutrient-dependent and pheromone-controlled. The nutrients are linked from food odors to hormone-organized and hormone-activated behaviors of invertebrates and vertebrates. Humans sometimes act like other animals that may consistently eat the same food but lose interest in the pheromones of the same mate. The binding problem may become a bonding problem.