Duels And Duets - Why Men And Women Talk So Differently
The author asserts that without reference to the sex of the birds they will never be able to fully understand the function of bird song.
Locke addresses this point further by pointing out the degree of biophobia - humanity's distaste for natural systems - that exists when studying human behaviour.
Duels and Duets is centred around studying the biological differences between the apparent divergences that have evolved in male and female speech patterns.
These are differences that, post-feminism, people are often reluctant to explore.
Locke competently investigates the idea that men are often verbally combative with one another, however much "in jest," and that women are often seen to be co-operative and supporting and the providers of sympathy-building relationships.
Using examples from the animal kingdom, anthropological studies and historical reference, Locke suggests that women and men employ specific communicative behaviours that they use among themselves and that these languages are rooted in mating strategy.
Locke argues that these vastly complicated and different methods of communication may have juxtaposed and given birth to spoken language itself.
The book is fascinating, but it does wade into the middle of a highly charged political debate regarding gender politics.
It's a sad fact that most people rarely change their mind on emotive issues but if you feel like digging deeper into the science you will certainly enjoy this book and may even learn something.
It's certainly intellectually leaps and bounds beyond Men Are From Mars, Women Are From Venus, yet it's still an accessible read.