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Lec - Nov 2nd

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Religion & Culture
Chris Klassen

November 2nd November-02-12 8:31 AM Gender, Sexuality and Religious Identity Sex  We often put it in a category in relation to sex  Sex: biological category o Genitals, breasts, etc. o Not a universal definition of sex o Some cultures sex is not distinguished between male and female o Ambiguity in sex in some cultures  Western Culture o We like the idea of two sexes o Helps up with procreation o Deals with what your body looks like/what your body does o Chromosomes Gender  How we expect you to act based on your "kind" of body  Has a lot to do with cultural and social contexts  Different things determine gender socially o Ex: hair length o Ex: way we walk o Ex: kinds of relationships we think of as appropriate  Language: Masculine and Feminine (not male and female like sex) Sex and Gender - how people should live according our characteristics Sexuality  Concepts of desire  Self-identification  How you relate to others in terms of physical and emotional desires  How you chose to create relationships  Also tied to procreation in Western Cultures  Western: a lot to do with religious and social concepts  Christianity - American values are founded on Christianity  Christianity holds heterosexual values as important o Why? o Foundations of Hebrew people  Origin story of Jewish people - God calls them out as chosen - Father Abraham o People of Israel were not encouraged to bring in other people - converts  To grow, you must procreate o Very strong laws about how one should act sexually o Men planting their seed in the appropriate woman o Women keep pure for the appropriate man o Women not allowed to have sex with other men, men could have multiple wives however o Laws against men wasting their seed is very strict o Homosexual behaviour wasted the seed o Masturbation wastes the seed o Heterosexual sex when man pulls out before ejaculation wastes the seed o According to laws of procreation - female homosexual behaviour wasn't an issue  This translates into Christianity o Christian texts - never any concept of a person being a homosexual o No concept of someone being heterosexual o The idea of sexual identity is a modern concept o Can't escape sexual identity o Sexuality has become identity in a way that it wasn't many years ago  How do religious identities shape and challenge these sexual identities o A preference of sexuality How Does Religion Challenge Social Norms?  Most religions (World Religions) have a tradition of being patriarchal and heterosexist  Certain men use power over others  In religious contexts o Catholic church - highest figure is the Holy Father - all authority figures are men  Not that all men have that power, but that particular group  Heteronormism - only way to relate sexually  Uses mainstream as those who support patriarchy and heteronormism  Marginal - those who don't support patriarchy and heteronormism  Confirmatory - those who accept the social systems around them  Challenging - those who challenge social systems around them, believe changes should happen  Consolidating quadrant - support and accept patriarchy and heteronormism - procreation o Fundamentalist Christians have this o Promise Ke
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