PSYC 2850 - Human Sexuality - Class 9

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Published on 12 Oct 2011
Psychology 2800
March 30, 2011
Sexual Orientation
Sexual orientation
Physical (sexual) attraction - lust
Emotional (love) attraction/bonding?
Boston Marriage
Relationship between two women in the 1800s, in a loving and passionate
relationship but not necessarily lustful
Passionate Friendship
Relationship between two men in the 1900s, straight men often married to women
and exhibited passionate love without lust
Measures of Sexual Orientation
Sexual orientation identity: gay, straight or bi
Engage with no preferred sex because of your culture, in prison, a prostitute
Difficult to observe sexual behaviour
Definition problem with what really counts as sexual behaviour
Genital arousal
Straight women seem to be aroused by all kinds of stimuli
Brain activity
Sexual fantasies/attractions are considered to be the best criteria for measuring
sexual orientation
Kinsey 7 point scale from 0-6
0 exclusively heterosexual (0,1 usually considered heterosexual)
6 exclusively homosexual
3 equally attracted to men and women
Most people are exclusively heterosexual (Kinsey 0)
1-3% of men are exclusively homosexual
<1% of women are exclusively homosexual
Rare in men
More common in women
Stability of Sexual Orientation
Generally speaking, men’s sexual orientation seems to be more stable
than that of women
Research suggest that non-heterosexual women exhibit more sexual
fluidity than men
Women more often later in life will change their sexual orientation and
may become attracted to women
The form male homosexuality takes varies cross-culturally
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