12.12 Wrapping Up: And Tango Makes Three

And Tango Makes Three

Remember “And Tango Makes Three”, the children’s book about two male penguins, Roy and Silo, who adopted an egg? That book became notorious, making the American Library Associations top-ten list of “most challenged [or banned] books” during the most recent decade: http://www.ala.org/bbooks/top-100-bannedchallenged-books-2000-2009

Soon after the book’s publication, and after a six-year partnership, Silo left Roy for a female penguin named Scrappy. Reactions to the split were mixed but, as Roberta Sklar, a spokeswoman for the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, said: “There’s almost an obsession with questions such as, ‘Is sexual orientation a birthright or a choice?’ And looking at the behavior of two penguins in captivity is not a way to answer that question.” She continued by noting that the public outcry (over the book, the penguin pair, and then their split) “is a little ridiculous. Or maybe a lot ridiculous.”

Figure 12.13 Chinstrap


However, as we discussed on pages 8.3 and 8.4, sexual orientation is complicated, non-binary, and often fluid. In humans and in penguins. http://www.nytimes.com/2005/09/24/nyregion/new-love-breaks-up-a-6year-relationship-at-the-zoo.html?_r=0 

As we conclude this chapter and prepare for in-class discussion, be sure to return to the chapter’s goals and objectives.


Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License

The Evolution and Biology of Sex Copyright © 2020 by Sehoya Cotner and Deena Wassenberg is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.