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The professional literature in the last couple of decades has provided increasingly helpful information and assistance to therapists by presenting statistics and data, mapping the complexities of marital infidelity and articulating helpful models to assist couples through the crisis.
Many authors in this area ground their work in Systems Theory, Family Systems, sex research, personality theory and Social Psychology.
Correspondingly, many movies have dealt with affairs, most notably, Long before our modern era, infidelity was a recurrent element in literature and art. The Ten Commandments devotes a specific commandment to it. Similarly, many anthropologists have repeatedly claimed that Homo sapiens throughout its evolution, like most animals, has not been naturally monogamous.
Some better known examples are Spencer Tracy’s life long affair with Katharine Hepburn, Bill Cosby, Sophia Loren and a seemingly endless stream of other Hollywood celebrities. Homer’s Anthropologist Margaret Mead once suggested that monogamy is the most difficult of all human marital arrangements.
The marital infidelities of many famous people have been dealt with publicly. Actors and actresses have long provided endless material to the tabloids on affairs and infidelity.
Similarly, there is some confusion between infidelity, an affair and extramarital sexuality.
Their views on infidelity effect their rationales for the causes and significantly color their proposed solutions.
The different approaches are not mutually exclusive and, except for # 2, the moralistic view, complement each other.
Many couples in many cultures seem to accept infidelity as part of the culture and unavoidable aspect of marriage.
These couples do not face a crisis when the infidelity is exposed.
This summary was inspired by the important work of David Atkins, Ph. The root of the term infidelity is ‘lack of faith’ and disloyalty, as in ‘infidel’ which is the denial of belief in a certain religion.