There are certain psychological and physiological reasons for the persistence of this dualistic attitude in the very nature of the sex act itself. Until the climax of the sexual erethism, woman is for man the acme of supreme desire; but with detumescence the emotions tend to swing to the opposite pole, and excitement and longing are forgotten in the mood of repugnance and exhaustion. This tendency would be very much emphasized in those primitive tribes where the corroboree with its unlimited indulgence was common, and also among the ancients with their orgiastic festivals. In the revulsion of feeling following these orgies woman would be blamed for man’s own folly. In this physiological swing from desire to satiety, the apparent cause of man’s weakness would be looked upon as the source of the evil—a thing unclean. There would be none of the ethical and altruistic element of modern “love” to protect her. Students agree that these elements in the modern sentiment have been evolved, “not from the sexual instinct, but from the companionship of the battlefield." It is therefore probable that in this physiological result of uncontrolled sex passion we shall find the source of the dualism of the attitude toward sex and womanhood present in taboo.
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