• Asociological perspective
• For exam: what aresexual norms in those pre-history societies (thatwe'll be
looking at, three of them... )
• Peopleoften apply an ethnocentric "you" for other cultures, and sexuality
○ Ourway is the only way
○ Ourway is the best way; valuejudgment about one's culture being
best,other need to match up to that point of reference
○ InNorth america,very euro-centric p.o.v
○ Cross-cultural toget better understanding of diversity of sexual
norms, and the universality (how they arethe same)
Eg tanzania and polygamy
□ 2forms of polygamy
□ Gyny/andry (many women, or many men)
□ Polygyny fairlycommon; one wifemany husbands less
common and often involves marrying brothers
□ Marriagein many places arefor socioeconomic reasons
□ 853cultures are monogamous, so polygamy unusual
• Why study?
○ Provides insightinto...
Diversityanduniversalism ofsexual norms
○ Illustrates theimportance of learning in shaping human sexual
behaviour (as opposed to biol. Determinism)
□ Wayto classifycultures
□ Continuum socan getsemi in middle
□ Permissive:characterized by positive and tolerant attitudes
towards the freedom of sexual expression.
Thesecultures understand human sexualityas very
natural part of human development; seeas normal,
natural and part of development
Noculture offers a 100% complete freedom of
expression;always somekind of rule! Might be less,
or more slack.Butthere is no free for all.Always
somekind of shaping and limitation to sexual
□ Restrictivesocieties:will seektocontrol and restrain sexual
ingeneral, the societies areignorant of the role, or
someaspects ofsexualityin development
Eg maynot know link between menstruation adn
conception; may givemenstruation a whole different
meaning ifdon't know how to make a baby
Orseetheseaspects as being negative,not good.
□ Semi: certain tolerance of expression, but a fewmore rules
andregulation compared to permissive. Lineis fairlyclear, andregulation compared to permissive. Lineis fairlyclear,
peopleknow when they've crossedthe line
Canada:semi-restrictive,maybe a hair permissive
Lowanxiety ->high anxiety continuum
□ Does societyharbor a lot of anxiety? Fears,taboos (eg we
don't talkabout those things here), banning...
Bodies arethe sameacross cultures... So what makes up the huge
○ Demonstrates how "sexual normalcy" is a relativeconcept
○ Demonstrates how cultral attitudes, customs and beliefs about sex
andsexualityassigning MEANINGto the indiv's sexual behaviour
Good? Bad? Mean you're an adult now?
Meaning is assignedthrough language,socialization
○ Is essential toanalyzing sexuallyrelatedproblems in the world and is
keyto finding solutions
Important to understand context, norms creating that context,
tounderstand the problem
Eg riskfactors in N.A (many partners is inlist),in africa (being a
female,married to 1 man is a risk factor)... Power btwn men and
women, education... Even condoms areconsidered a western
things attimes... Notion of sexwith a young girl will cure... WHO
has hadto tell everyone to have sexor marrying girls under
9...whole different context. Can;t apply colutions that work in1
soceityinanother w/o understanding it.
• TheMangaians(note,info inspired by pages 10 and 11)
Infotaken from the 1960's!Snapshot of what was going on there
atthat time. Neglects many influences over time.
Studied by: Marshall (note, don't freak out over these names and
Sexregular subjectof conversation
□ From earlyage,boys and girls encouraged to engageinsex-
Around 12/13/14, puberty time, boys and girls instructed,
usuallybyan adult, in sexual techniques (taught techs)
Males underwent a form of genital modification
Highlysoughtafter, allowed entry into the "pleasure
TheExpert inserted har dpiece ofshell under foreskin
toprotect glans,madeincisionall the way up the top
ofthe shaftto where the penis met the body.
Endresult, scarand a kind of flapped open foreskin.
Not removed, but flaps open revealing tip of penis
andcreating a scarup to the pubic area.
Getto run into ocean after itis done, then Fill up with herbs,plants, etc.banaged and are put into seclusion
Nocontact with girls,and instructed in sexual
techniques from the expert. Special diet too.
Taughtto hold offorganasmso femalewould orgasm
2to 3 times first. Taught caressing,oral stimulation,
breastand genital stimulation.
Firstsexual experienceafter seclusionis with an
experienced woman. Intercourse movements will rip
offscab,after which he canfind partners of own age
Girls around same ageinstructed by adult female.Not mother.
□ Howto make pelvic and vulvar movements to experience
□ Mosterotic part of a woman, to mangaians,is the mons
□ After learning techniques, in pleasure period and find
partners of their age.
Sexlikea game, no emotional attachment; encouraged to have
many different partners, everyone found a partner
Upuntil 30, men have 2-3orgasms a day (holding back to
females have2-3for every one)
From 4-8and older: 2/3 times per week with 1orgasm each
Tatooof genitals signofpride of many partners
At20 years old, allowed to marry, usuallyfor love
Unaware oflink btwn menstruation and pregnancies!
□ Believedbabies form sexwith sameperson a lot
□ Encouraged multiple partners
□ Arrival of baby positive impact of their sexlife
□ Halfofcouples married when girl pregnant or after giving
birth (13% born "illegitimate"-N.A term)
□ Nostigma to unwed mothers
□ Decisionmadewith dad about who she would marry to
helpraisedchild, man happy to raiseas own, no issues
Emphasis placedon lengthy and enjoyable sexual experiences,
andthe movement in and out of intercourse
Looked down on virginity,because they don't know how to
provide sexual pleasure
1%virgins at marriage; only chief's daughters
○ Messengerandwife, 1950's and 60's
○ Pop'n 350
○ Roman catholic
○ Sexshrouded with feelings ofguiltand sinfulness
○ Talksotaboo, even saying "she's pregnant" is taboo
○ Noformal education of sexualityor sexed.
Boys generallymore informed than girls,but knowledge from older ○ Boys generallymore informed than girls,but knowledge from older
boys,adults,or from watching animals!
○ Mothers taught daughters that they would have to submit to
husbands animal craving to in order to obey god's injunction to be
fruitful and multiply
○ Genders segregatedquite a bit before marriage
○ Arranged marriage, by church, using records of who was related to
For socioeconomic reasons
□ Nolove, attachment, caring,etc.
□ Nocourtship period
□ Nopremarital sex
Meanage= 36(men) and 25 (women)
○ Didnot believe femaleorgasm was normal
Women finding pleasurein sex,especiallyorgasm,viewed as
Men believedsexual activitywould drain their strength, sodidn't
○ Strict nudity taboos (on an island),only babies could wash naked
Washinwater wearing peticoats (long underwear) washing
anything not covered by long underwears
○ Intercourse initiated by husband, onvolving short period of kissing on
mouth, touching/groping womans butt, then to intercourse in
missionaryposition, ending inmans ejac and him falling asleep
All whilewearing their underwear!
All inatmosphere of tension and guilt
○ Average7children per couple
○ Didn'tlearn how to swim becauseof nudity taboo (and fishermen!)
○ Menstruation traumatizing (no one talked ofit)
Menopause understood to causeinsanity,to point middle aged
women retired to bed and stayedaway from social situations
□ Menopause symptoms considered signs ofinsanity
○ Church was involved in every singlething. Lifeinvading.
○ Traditional dance says a lotabout norms... Traditional irishdance all in
theknees and feet, body stiff,diverts attention awayfrom torso...
○ Thomas Greggor and wife, 60's and 70's
○ Central Brazil
○ Openabout sex,express very little shameabout it
Parent's openly joke in front of children
Matter of factattitude toward sexuality
Central inactivites and preoccupations, and symbolism, Central inactivites and preoccupations, and symbolism,
□ Much of genital knowledge acquired in course of sexual
playand curious investigation,but some more
systematicallytaughtto children in myth
□ Mademany analogies between food a sex
○ Byadolescence,havehad sexual experience. Play between kids well
○ Around puberty and firstmenarchy, both sexes gointo seclusionfor a
Boys takemedecines, strictdiet because women are viewed as
dangerous for them atthat time
Young women learn that they are dangerous for men while
□ Not allowed to have pregnancy out of wedlock somarried
○ Arranged socioeconomic marriages, not out of love
○ Lovetoward spouse seenas being in bad taste
Married adults participate insystem of extra-marital sexualityof
having affairs (allowed!)
□ Hecounter 37 adults having 88affairs!
□ Men motivated by sexual desire,women by social contact
□ 2-14lovers atone time! Sexually attracted to eachother
○ Pleasuretempered by anxietyof intercourse
□ Men: make illm stunt growth, sapvitality as wrestlers,
attractdangerous spirits,impair skills andhunters and
□ Men don't engagein foreplay or touch partner's genitals
Vagina,menstruation, secretions all dangerous!
Cancontaminate food, leadto paralysis
Nosexduring menstruation, pregnancy, or 1 year
post-partum (post-partum taboo)
□ Mostcommon position is whole seated(missionary leaves
vulnerable to insects,unnattra