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November 16 - Lecture 31.doc

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McMaster University
Jennifer Ostovich

-If you are gay you should take care of your kin to make sure your copy of genes will make it into the next generation Bobrow & Bailey -Failed to support hypothesis -Straight siblings are more generous when giving money -Found that there is emotional and physical distance in gay men -But in some cultures we do see some support for this hypothesis Vasey & VanderLaan (2010) -Studied this idea in a group in Samoa that have a very specific category that is sort of analogous to being gay -These men are very valued in the culture but they don’t mate with women -Asked both straight and gay men and asked women how much time and resources did they donate to their kin and non-kin -How much time did they spend babysitting, did they buy toys, did they tutor them, take them on field trips, give them money or food? -The fa-afafine donated more to their kin, and everyone was pretty much the same for the non- kin -Fa-afafine are giving significantly more stuff to their kin then are the straight men or the women -This seems to be about kin-selection -The problem is that these gay men live a far more acceptable culture than we do -The theory is still problematic since this is a special culture -Is this culture still analogous to how gay men were treated in the EEA? --We still don’t know for sure -The mothers of fa-afafine have more children than do mothers of non-fa-afafine -This is connected to gene-based theories Role of Hormones -By default fetuses are female, if things don’t happen hormonally then you will come out female -In females you don’t want masculine hormones crossing the blood barrier and making you masculinized -There is something called alpha-feto-protein, the role of this is to block masculinizing hormones to cross the BBB so females don’t become masculinized or defeminized -If this protein doesn’t work then a female will be masculinized and the brain will be altered e.g. may be better at figure rotation -Males don’t have alpha-feto-proteins which allows them to be masculinized -If something happened that they developed something like the alpha-feto-protein this would prevent masculinization -Essentially anything that goes off script seems to result in incomplete sexual differentiation of the brain (the sexual dimorphic areas will be affected--if the structure is supposed to be smaller than males it may now be the same size as males) -Researchers have looked at disorders known to have to do with sex hormone use going wrong CongenitalAdrenal Hyperplasia: XX--the adrenal hormone makes its way to your brain and you get masculinized, they often have a small penis, they may seem very androgynous and they are also more likely to be gay then are women who don’t have this disorder -This masculinization that they experience prenatally due to hormone use problems affects not only their body, but also their brains and sexual orientation -But most lesbians don’t have this disorder, this is a very small population -This disorder is just used as an analogy CompleteAndrogen Insensitivity Syndrome (CAIS): XY the testosterone receptors just don’t work -These are males who are born looking females and are very attractive feminine looking -They want to mate with males which make them actually gay -Can’t reproduce because she has male internal organs like testes and not a uterus (but does not have external male genitalia) -These people are considered as gay men What about
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