Class Notes (810,889)
Canada (494,324)
SOCI 211 (102)

lec 5

7 Pages
Unlock Document

McGill University
Sociology (Arts)
SOCI 211
Fillippo Sabetti

Lecture 5: Sex for Money It’s treating people as a “means to an end” in this case “my sexual gratification” Instead of this: We should always treat people as “ends in themselves” this is “dignity” The above comes from the great German philosopher Emmanuelle Kant (1724-1804) C.O.Y.O.T.E. = “Call off your old tired ethics” Notes: Hermaphrodites or Intersex: -biological sexuality is not always clear cut -in rare cases we have hermaphroditism -South African woman ran in women’s race and won -had been tested and found to have intersex qualities -elevated levels of testosterone -had male testes that are internal -the word hermaphrodite comes from Greek mythology - Greek god Hermes and goddess Aphrodite =hermaphrodite -the Greeks stood in awe of this condition and though its origin was super natural -sometimes these characteristics are internal -sometimes people have both male and female genitalia -the cultural side has generally been uneasy w/ sexual ambiguity -this is not the case w/ all cultures -in Thailand, it’s generally accepted w/ relatively little stigma (negative label) -NavajoAboriginal group in South West part of the USA -also look on it w/ awe and as something supernatural -people who were intersex became influential people in the tribe Transexuals: -may have transplants to function as normal males and females -some deliberately change their sex -someone who is prepared to undergo therapy and surgery to change their sex -gender identity is out of synch w/ the body -sometimes a person’s identity doesn’t line up w/ their biology -some people are convinced that they are a “woman in a man’s body” or vice versa -this kind of surgery is covered by OHIP in Canada -gender rolesexpectations about how males and females are supposed to act Meterosexuality: -men who are absolute “fuss pots”/extremely concerned about their appearance -these men are heterosexuals -ex. David Beckham Homosexuality: -caused by nature or nurture? Nurture: homosexuality is found among our closest evolutionary relative -chimps, baboons, gorillas -you also find it in other mammals therefore it suggest a biological root -found in all cultures and apparent in all times in history -Greek phalanx (formation in army) -when that formation breaks than you’re in big trouble -in order to maintain the solidarity of the Phalanx, soldiers were encouraged to participate in homosexual behaviour Nurture: -it may well be that sexual preference is flexible and can be learned -in prisons, both male and female prisons, homosexual behaviour is widespread -these people go into prison as heterosexuals, while in prison they engage in homosexuality, and when they leave they return to their heterosexual behaviour -this may be the reason why people can be bisexual Gender roles: -in our society it has recently legalized homosexual marriage -54% of Canadians approve these changes -still problems w/ this in the states -tolerance for homosexuality has increased over time -sociologists have less interest in the origins of homosexuality b/c there is substantial evidence that homosexuality is biologically determined -homosexuality is less stigmatized -there has been political agitation by the gays and lesbian community -psychiatric associationslooked at homosexuality as a mental disorder -after political agitation, they dropped that view Transgender: -don’t like to follow gender role expectations -sometimes cross-dressers -very often they will engage in traditional female activities -in traditional cultures (tribal)they make room for men who don’t want to be warriors but instead want to live w/ women and engage in women activities -ex. Aboriginal in the Americas The culture of sex: -when sociologists speak of sex they talk about biology -gender is the social construction of sex -culture shapes that biological drive -our sexual practices are shaped by culture -by contrast, grasshoppers have sex in a genetically programmed way -have mating rituals that take specific form -reproduce in specific way in relation to body position -in humans it’s different -but culture shapes; there is cultural variation -ex. sex position Kinsey: found that most couples have sex face to face w/ the man on the top or bottom = “missionary position” -on South Seas, men and women didn’t have sex that way -when Europeans came along, they said it was sinful to have sex in the position they did -kissing styles vary culturally -in some cultures it’s ok for males to kiss each other -modesty can vary as well -in Victorian era, what was considered erotic, that part of the woman that has sexual connotation was the ankles and so these were covered -in Somoa, the navel is considered erotic and thus covered -in Sumatra, the knees were considered erotic and thus covered -in the West, it the breast and genitals that are considered erotic and thus covered -men could not bear their chests b/c considered lewd and indecent -a female student from Guelph took a case to court in which she argued that when females bear their breasts it’s seen as obscene but when males do, it’s not -she won (court found in her favour) -variations in intercoursewhen and when not you can have it -some cultures are strictsex only permissible when you’re married -some cultures are more permissible and some are indifferent -Southern cultures, ex. Tahiti -very permissive sexually -resulted in their great undoing -when Europeans arrived, the sailors who went ashore quickly took advantage and the Tahitians got STDs -they had no immunity and thousands died -if you live in an area where STDs are common, some people gain immunity but this was not the case in Tahiti Sexual controversies: -sex is not always associated w/ intimacy and love -sometimes associated w/ hate, violence, and aggression -usually male on female but also male on male (usually in prisons) -sexual aggression can take many forms -harassment, rape, verbal abuse, physical abuse in sexual context Harassment: -most like takes place in places where people congregate -schools, universities, workplaces, family settings -studies revealed that women who are not assertive tend to be victimized 2 forms: 1. Quid pro quo sexual harassment -“I give you this, you give me that” 2. Hostile environment sexual harassment -comments about the body -people at the bottom of the hierarchy -they have occupational powerlessness -more likely to be harassed -if a boss, most likely to be left alone -as women achieve positions of power, increasingly, female superiors are harassing male inferiors -the power dimension -what are becoming fairly common, female primary school teachers having affair w/ their young male boy students Rape: -many people say that it has nothing to do w/ sex -desire to degrade and humiliate -in America, about 100 000 women report being raped per year -but rape is one of the most underreported crimes in the US Why? b/c of the stigma that is attached to it -in Ontario, in order to make it easier for women to report it, we have rape shield laws -when the case goes to trial, the media cannot reveal the woman’s name Jane Doe -we know that rape is underreported due to victimization surveys -when asked women if they has ever been raped, the numbers increased from 100 000 to ½ a million -in Canada, the number in 2005 was 26000 but probably only 1/5 the real number (didn’t include survey) -thus, the principle motive is domination and humiliation -arise from early sexual preferences -children abused as children are more likely to engage in it when they are adults -children who were not sexually abused are less likely to be abused as adults -children may have had emotionally cold and distant fathers Social conditions associated w/ rape: -Warhistorically, those who were defeated in war, the victors would come and rape all the women of the
More Less

Related notes for SOCI 211

Log In


Don't have an account?

Join OneClass

Access over 10 million pages of study
documents for 1.3 million courses.

Sign up

Join to view


By registering, I agree to the Terms and Privacy Policies
Already have an account?
Just a few more details

So we can recommend you notes for your school.

Reset Password

Please enter below the email address you registered with and we will send you a link to reset your password.

Add your courses

Get notes from the top students in your class.