The Domestication Theory
My aspiration, here, is not to redefine Charles Darwin’s concept of domestication; instead where Darwin’s propagation of domestication is about taming an animal or plant so that it loses its ability to live in the wild— keeping in view Darwin's keen and overwhelming interest in animals, it is quite discernible as well as comprehensible as why he couldn't think of humans in terms of domestication— I intend to propound ‘Domestication Theory’ with particular reference to the Animal who has considerably evolved and is thus considered civilized, i.e., Man, and even more specifically, Men. But before I get to my ‘Domestication Theory’, it would be very pertinent to explore and discuss genesis of domestication.
a) To convert (animals, plants, etc.) to domesticate uses; tame.
b) To tame (an animal), especially by generations of breeding, to live in close association with human beings as a pet or work animal and usually creating a dependency so that the animal loses its ability to live in the wild.
c) To adapt (a plant) so as to be cultivated by and be beneficial to human beings.
d) To accustom to household life or affairs.
e) To take (something foreign, unfamiliar, etc.) for one's own use or purposes; adopt.
f) To make more ordinary, familiar, acceptable, or the like: to domesticate radical ideas.
Domestication, in animals and plants, diverges from taming. Where domestication refers to a change in the phonotypical expression and genotype of the animal occurs, taming is simply the process by which animals become acclimatized to human presence. Animals domesticated for home companionship are usually called pets while those domesticated for food or work are called livestock or farm animals. A great difference exists between a tame animal and a domesticated animal; in animals and plants, the term "domesticated" refers to an entire species or variety while the term "tame" can refer to just one individual within a species or variety. However, the distinction of domestication and taming in Men is different and evolutionary in nature; Men are tamed, at first stage, before getting domesticated completely. It is an organic whole. A man can’t be domesticated before he is tamed and thus taming precedes domestication.
Charles Darwin propounded that the process of domestication— in animals and plants— can involve a both unconscious and methodical element. But, amazingly, this is so true even in domestication of men.
According to Darwin, routine human interactions with animals and plants create selection pressures that cause adaptation as species adjust to human presence, use or cultivation. It applies to men equally good when observed minutely; as their routine interaction with women create selection pressure leading to taming of wilder instincts and adaptation of well mannered and civilized demeanour to adjust to presence of the softer creatures. The taming, in this instance, is voluntary and motivated by aesthetic appetite or lust which tells us even the men, like wild animals, have taste for aesthetics but then one can imagine and wonder at the quality of his aestheticism. The imagination and aesthetic sense of a wild man could be termed pure as it has not been tamed and corrupted by experience yet but it could also refer to the aesthetic sense of a baboon, an illustration of wild man, who is amazed by an appareled and dressed up body irrespective of the quality of the carrier or the bearer of those clothes, e.g., King Kong falls in love with the very first girl that landed on the island; he was not concerned if she was beautiful or there were more beautiful women out there, and for the rest of the time this gigantic King Kong is seen to adapt himself, ridiculously, to suit the lady. Thus, in selection process, men through their interactions with their counterparts choose, or at least they are content to think so, to be tamed and domesticated ultimately though unconsciously which is to say their wildness may keep growing if they don’t interact with women. Co-education may be termed as one effort towards keeping men tamed and civilized through the presence of softer creatures around, though some of men, in certain instances, are not tamed enough properly and cause trouble now and then.
A simple analogy of men and animals, with reference to voluntary domestication, could be average wolves, less wary of humans. These wolves were able to thrive by following humans to scavenge for food near camp fires and garbage dumps. Eventually a symbiotic relationship developed between people and these proto-dogs. The dogs fed on human food scraps, and humans found that dogs could warn them of approaching dangers, help with hunting, act as pets, provide warmth, or supplement their food supply. As this relationship progressed, humans eventually began to keep these self-tamed wolves and breed from them the types of dogs that we have today.
Secondly, according to Darwin, Deliberate selective breeding has also been used to create desired changes in process of domestication. This term, i.e., ‘Deliberate selection’ again is true with reference to men’s domestication in which women play an active role and men are but the recipients. In the selective process, as mentioned earlier, it was man who being affected by interactions with women presented himself voluntarily for domestication and adapted to women’s cultivated taste; in deliberate selection with reference to men, on the other hand, it is women who pick and choose men according to their needs and taste to tame and domesticate them. Reasons for this selection can be varied such as height, complexion, physical build up, and financial status of men are a few to make a mention.
These two forces, unconscious natural selection and methodical selection, have both played roles in the processes of domestication of men by women throughout history.
Men, or at least majority of them, have been, throughout the history, free spirited, adventurous and wild creatures; women, on the other hand, have always been the soft hearted, loving, and artful motivated by need of survival. Men seem to have little interest in setting up a home, settling down with one woman, breeding children and they love to move on playing with pleasures of life here and there whereas women are embodiment of emotional intelligence; they , or at least most of them, always want to settle down with one man taking them in marriage; where a man’s foremost focus seems carnal pleasures, a woman wants to breed children, predominantly, because this gives her a sense of achievement— especially in an environment where there are not many avenues opened for a woman to assert herself as an equal human being— and partially because this is her guarantee to keep her husband bound to herself. Hence, where marriage or settling down could be the first thing on a woman’s list, it is, most of the time, the last thing to do on free spirited man’s list.
Men are, thus, domesticated by women either through men’s voluntative design as in unconscious natural selection or through active and aggressive pick and choose by women as in methodical selection. Men are domesticated, in both processes, in different stages.
In unconscious natural selection men are receptive, intelligent and more forthcoming for taming than average wild men and they try to adapt themselves according to the convenience of their counterpart. Thus women have not to work very hard on them. But in methodical selection, women pursue domestication of men vehemently and aggressively. They are fully equipped with intelligence, especially, emotional intelligence.
When men approach women or they are forced to do so by irresistible charms and fine airs of their counterparts— they are often facilitated and encouraged by women at this stage when men don’t know how to take initiative, in case of beta and omega males, whereas Alpha males may surprise them with their over confidence and aggressive personality— women occupy themselves with setting up a track for them to give them the direction to their destination. When a man pursues a woman to court her, or he is tempted by a woman to pursue her in courtship, the man is focused as how to get to her as soon as possible. Thus he works on his appearance to make himself presentable and agreeable for her. He wears clothes and perfumes he might not have thought of before. He turns into a more cultured, civilized and tamed creature in the process. The woman, being emotionally more intelligent and motivated by sense of survival, occupies herself in shaping the light path that could create a win-win situation for them. At this stage, all the happening takes place in their minds and hearts.
The man motivated by his longing as well as curiosity to explore this heart-warming creature – like the beast King Kong who is amazed by the woman but doesn’t know what to do and want to explore what to do simultaneously— takes initiative and makes his move. He expresses enchantment and spell of her beauty on him, how much he longs for her and that how he can’t imagine to live without her. The emotionally intelligent woman knows that it is the time to strike. She, thus, questions his passion for her in cautiously phrased sentences. She tells him how other men around say same things and he assures her how his passion for her is different from others. Thus giving her the leverage to ask him to prove what he claims. The man, at this stage, is ready to do everything and anything to get to her and thus she asks him to marry her in order to prove his love and passion for her.
The wild Man, though not sure what he should do, is motivated by his ego of standing out from the others, is compelled to get married. The taming of the wild creature is, thus, completed.
Once married, the woman sets on domesticating this tamed man. She emphasizes to him the humiliation she feels when their neighbors call her husband work-shirker and sluggish. She invokes his self-respect. She tells him how she defended him against their nuisance but also how mortified and disgraced she felt. The man is touched by her love and care for him and pledges to himself to defend and safeguard her self-respect. In the coming days, he either finds a job— however petty it maybe— or becomes a vendor or a hawker at a bus stop.
The domestication of man enters its final stages. The woman accentuates how inevitable it is for them that they build their sweet home. The man finds no sense in building a house and settling down on one place for good. The woman, being emotionally intelligent, has the audacity to bring into his notice the difficulties she has to face due to living in the rented house and that how embarrassed and degraded she feels when the owner of their house tries to take liberty with her and insults her man’s manhood. The tamed man— who is, emotionally, in her control by now— gets infuriated to kill the owner. The woman consoles his ego, expresses her fears and worries for his well being, his supreme importance in her life, and that what would become of her if anything happened to him. The man is touched by her love, care and wisdom again. She, then, tells him what he should actually do instead of killing the owner of the house. She, successfully, convinces him that they need to build their own sweet home to get rid of this menace for good. She makes him believe how comfortable and beautiful life would be when they can enjoy a peaceful life in their own little heaven filled with love and… love. The tamed man gets the point. The woman has, successfully, passed on to the next stage of domesticating his man.
In the meanwhile, they become parents of a baby and the wild animal this man was once turns into a completely domesticated pet. His wife, now, calls him with affectionate pet names such as baby, janu baby, sweetheart, jani, darling just the way she calls her cat zuby or his dog tiger. Working in the kitchen, she tells her husband, “Baby! Please play with the kid and take care of him till I get free.” She advocates him how honorable it is if the husband and wife share responsibilities and work. In the coming days, they go to market with a baby hanger on husband’s back and a patent little handbag in the wife’s arm!
Exceptions of the Domestication Theory:
Like all other theories, there are certain exceptions to the domestication theory which are as follow:
a) Not all women are emotionally intelligent and all men are goofs.
b) The goof women who lack social exposure and fall prey to men’s nefarious designs.
c) Not all the men can be tamed and domesticated. Some of them are wild as well as cunning and they get to the women before they could tame them.
d) Some men of wilder disposition get tamed but resist obstinately to get domesticated properly and thus despite being tamed, succeed in retaining their wild essence.
e) Some men may not have to be domesticated; they are natural consequence of their ancestors having been domesticated.
f) Professionally ambitious women, especially from the places where women are not financially dependent on men, don’t always tame men to get married to them. There could be other designs.
g) Women who have no access to electronic media/movies/TV dramas/digests/cheap magazines.
Assumptions of the Domestication Theory:
a) Women have faster maturity rate as compared to men.
b) Women are emotionally intelligent.
c) Men are emotional goofs or at least inferior to women in emotional intelligence.
d) Men and women are dependent on each other for needs pertaining to the body as the seat of passions or appetites.
e) Women exhibit pleasant disposition as majority of men are averse to impudent and insolent treatment at least before getting tamed.
f) Women are dependent on men for economic and social security.
g) There are not enough opportunities for women to outgrow men for their needs.
h) Women have access to electronic media/movies/Tv dramas/digests/cheap magazines.
P.S. However, this list of assumptions and exceptions is limited and not exhaustive because it fails to take into account the profound changes that domestication has on men as well as women’s knowledge and expertise gained through their experience of domestication of men which they pass on to others.