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Anatomy of Love

A Natural History of Mating, Marriage, and Why We Stray

Helen Fisher


List Price: 26.95*
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Other Editions of This Title:
Digital Audiobook (2/25/2016)
Paperback (2/7/2017)
Paperback, Chinese (9/12/2019)
MP3 CD (2/26/2016)
Compact Disc (2/26/2016)
MP3 CD (2/26/2016)
Compact Disc (2/26/2016)
Paperback (1/3/1994)


A contemporary classic about love now completely revised and updated.

First published in 1992, Helen Fisher’s “fascinating” (New York Times) Anatomy of Love quickly became a classic. Since then, Fisher has conducted pioneering brain research on lust, romantic love, and attachment; gathered data on more than 80,000 people to explain why you love who you love; and collected information on more than 30,000 men and women on sexting, hooking up, friends with benefits, and other current trends in courtship and marriage. And she presents a new, scientifically based and optimistic perspective on relationships in our digital age—what she calls “slow love.”

This is a cutting-edge tour de force that traces human family life from its origins in Africa over 20 million years ago to the Internet dating sites and bedrooms of today. And it’s got it all: the copulatory gaze and other natural courting ploys; the who, when, where, and why of adultery; love addictions; her discovery of four broad chemically based personality styles and what each seeks in romance; the newest data on worldwide (biologically based) patterns of divorce; how and why men and women think differently; the real story of women, men, and power; the rise—and fall—of the sexual double standard; and what brain science tells us about how to make and keep a happy partnership.

Praise For Anatomy of Love: A Natural History of Mating, Marriage, and Why We Stray

Is romantic love a creation of troubadours and poets, or has it deep evolutionary roots? Is the seven-year itch really the four-year itch? Does true love betray itself in a brain scanner? With the eyes of an anthropologist and the voice of a poet, Helen Fisher lays bare the many worlds and ages of erotic love. And she knows whereof she speaks.
— Richard Dawkins

For journalists around the world, Helen Fisher has been the go-to authority on love and heartache since the first edition of Anatomy of Love. No one else knows the human heart so well—or explains it with such wit and style.
— John Tierney, coauthor of Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength

This book is a marvel. I eagerly read everything Helen Fisher writes. She is a national treasure. So illuminating!
— John Gottman, author of the revised Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work

Our conversations with Helen Fisher were crucial to understanding the current romantic climate. This revised version of Anatomy of Love is a great read for anyone interested in understanding love and romance. Also, Helen was kind enough to blurb our book, so we’d be real dicks not to do the same for her. Luckily, her work is fantastic and no moral dilemma has been posed.

— Aziz Ansari and Eric Klinenberg, authors of Modern Romance

Fisher weaves a persuasive and consistently surprising new explanation of the roots of human marriage, sex, and love. Her account cuts more deeply than the ordinary literature on human sexuality.
— Edward O. Wilson

A natural history filled with entertaining and informative anecdotes and narratives that offer context and background. . . . Highly recommended to readers interested in human sexuality.
— Library Journal

Much has changed in the landscape of love and dating since the first edition of anthropologist Fisher’s Anatomy of Love was published over 20 years ago . . . [and Fisher] presents plenty of new data. . . . The recent success of comedian Aziz Ansari and sociologist Eric Klinenberg’s Modern Romance (2015) suggests readers might be looking for further, more serious reading on the topic: Fisher’s book and its hundreds upon hundreds of cited sources won’t disappoint them.

— Booklist

W. W. Norton & Company, 9780393285222, 464pp.

Publication Date: February 1, 2016

About the Author

Helen Fisher , a biological anthropologist, is the author of five internationally selling books, including Why We Love and Why Him? Why Her? A Senior Research Fellow at the Kinsey Institute, a member of the Center for Human Evolutionary Studies at Rutgers University, and the chief scientific advisor to, Fisher is a frequent national and international speaker. Her TED talks have been viewed by more than 10 million people; and she lives in New York City.