Sex and gender
- Sex refers to male and female features. Gender is nurture. Term gender is used to refer to
nurture- ur identity of being male or female or whether u play muscularity or feminine role is
defined by culture. Over the last generations, the role has dec a lot. In back days, almost no
female officers use to be employed, relative fewer females university students (now majority)->
gender can cause huge diff .
- A sex industry is there. Prostitution is not correct way to say, we call them sex worker. Some are
for while other are against the legalization of prostitution.
- Historically few pple understand sexuality. Sex use to be taboo but now pple . In Europe, sex use
to be a taboo. “Pregnant” word was used less instead “in a family way” was said in order to
avoid confronting sexuality.
- When pple use to have sex, they use to avoid eye contact…old saying “u don’t have to look at
metal piece while poking the fire”.
- Erotophobia- (eroticism & phobia)…phobia against eroticism.
- Ancient Greek had no hang ups about sex and they didn’t call it a taboo or off limits. Even the
scientific use to see it as a taboo.
- Then Freud came up with his theory about id ego and superego.
- Libido is a sex drive- most imp determinant of human behavior & is the root of human behavior.
Id is where the instincts are derived from.
- Superego where the culture resides.
- Culture is morality. In most cultures, libido is at war with super ego.
- Ego mediates between warning impulses of conflict. Each human is marked by internal conflict.
Freud put sex on table.
- Many other studied it as well e.g. Kinsey (1950) – survey researcher conducted a study on
attitude towards sex and sexual behavior.
- Master and Johnson – their work was physiological- hire pple to conduct the exp and put wires
over them. Leave them to have sex while they measure the orgasm in them.
- Finally, Cher Hite (female psychologist) – focused on sex survey.
- Nowadays sex research is all over the place. Freud and essentialism and libido and id are imp in
understanding human behavior.
- Social constructionism is nurture. According to Freud, growing boys see their mother as sex
object and girls see their daughter as sex object. This Freud call oedipal complex.
- If someone says that he doesn’t remember this, Freud analysis will say that this is bcz u suppress
- “Penis envy”- most female feel left out bcz they lack a penis. Men are envious of women as men
can’t reproduce babies.
- “false pregnancy” – movie made on this.
- Human can turn sex into many things.
Sex and Biology - Each ovum or sperm contain 23 chromosomes- codes that guide physical development.
- Combine to form fertilized embryo. Male determine the sex of the child. Kings use to get rid of
wives when they give birth to daughter. Now we know that it’s the father that determines the
sex of the child.
- Men develop testicular tissues. Testosterone hormones are found mostly in males and fewer in
- Primary differences – genitals.
- Secondary differences – male r larger, body hair, body shape.
- Media use to present males and females very differently but now it’s less.
- “Alien” planet- completely female centered movie- turns upside down stereotype that use to
exist in past movie.
- When it comes to the body image there is less differences. Women have slightly more problem
with body image than men but they both are almost the same.
- In Spain, a fashion show models were banned from participating in this show bcz if other
women saw their body, they will be psychologically forced to emulate.
Departure from traditional gender roles.
- First, hermaphrodite (or intersex)-someone who is born with male genitalia and rest of
secondary features (breast, little body hair, hide pelvis). This term came from Greek gods-
hermes & aphradite.
- Intersex person has combination of male and female traits. This is nature type of things. Sexual
ambiguity- not clear whether this person is male or female. This is fairly common Thailand, they
call it lady boys.
- In Thailand, Sexual dimorphism (how much bigger are men than women?) is week. Many
instances, males and females can be of same size. Some males take female hormones and have
- NAVAHO- aboriginal tribe in Arizona-> In their culture, when hermaphrodite took place, they
look at it as supernatural. And the person who is hermaphrodite would become SHAMAN
(doctor). SHAMAN-> person who predict the future and is asked for advice.
- Trans means across- who cover both bases. Some will go under surgery to appear and function
as normal males or females.
- Male-> female you just have to remove stuff. From female-> male is more complicated.
- There are some transsexuals who are not hermaphrodites and they obtain sex change surgery.
- Transsexuals are convinced that they are in wrong body (doesn’t represent their true body).
- They think they are out of sync. These feelings are incredibly powerful. That’s why they go
under years of surgery.
Trans gender - Not interested in surgerical changing their sex but like to play dress up, masturbate as males or
- They dress like females and do female tasks. In India, they are being known for 3000 years
(exclusively males to female). There is terrible discrimination against them. “Hijras” they are
- Ancient ideas that they have some power. Some are outcast by their family. Many of them go
into sex working business.
- Males are castrati - have female voices and they sang in opera. They were majorly stars in
renaissance Europe 17s & 18s. If they undergo castrati, they will have beautiful singing voice of
females. Hence, they can make a lot of fortunes.
Metro sexual- applies to men. Men are fastidious about their appearance. They get manicures,
pedicures, clones, they want to look immacule.