October 22 , 2012 – Sexual Relationships 1
Article by Goldman (page 211) – “Plain Sex”
Summary – page 205
Sex is a Means to… (Ethical Components of Sex):
2. Get love
3. Gain communication
4. Learn something from somebody (Plato) – in ancient times men had sex with adolescence to teach them
something interpersonal “pedagogy”
If sex doesn’t include one of these components, it is considered morally suspect!
Page 212 – “I shall criticize the predominant form of analysis which I term “means-end analysis”
Is sex a means to an external end?
Sexual desire: the desire for contact with a body that results in pleasure
The goal is physical contact, not a separate further end the sex itself is valuable
Is his definition too broad? Does it include too much? REBUTTALS TO ARGUMENTS:
It can include such things like sports The desire in sports is not contact, it is to win.
It can include a baby’s desire to be cuddled The child’s desire is vague (amorphous). They aren’t
specifically looking for anything. They just want tenderness and security.
His definition isn’t too broad because he can account for any arguments made against it.
Is his definition too narrow? Does it include too little? REBUTTALS TO ARGUMENTS:
It doesn’t include personality Personality can contribute to sexual attraction.
o One’s personality is embodied in behaviour. You express your personality through behaviour.
o You can start liking someone’s personality but eventually it will lead to bodily contact.
Main reason why sex or having kids was considered ethical
We don’t have the ethical baggage of sex anymore because of contraceptives
We hardly have the desire to have sex FOR REPRODUCTION
o Before: sex was to reproduce
o It is like food. Before we ate for nutrition. Now, we eat for pleasure.
Symposium by Pluto Aristophanes
o People in mythical past = one person was actually composed of two intertwined people (could be
♀ ♀, ♀ ♂, or ♂ ♂)
o The power of two challenges gods with strength