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Chapter 1-12

FRHD2100 Chapter 1-12: Human Sexuality

Family Relations and Human Development
Course Code
FRHD 2100
Tuuli Kukkonen

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Human Sexuality 09/14/2015
What Office hours: wed. 11:30-1 MINS 237
What is Human Sexuality?
Erotic: arousing sexual feelings or desires
Gender: one’s personal, social & legal status as a male or female
Gender roles: expected behaviours of men & women within a
Human sexuality: the ways we experience & express ourselves as
sexual beings
Sex as Leisure
Sex is seen as leisure when it is voluntary, is not seen as work, &
serves some personal need provides physical pleasure
Canada vs USA
Pregnancy rate is much lower for Canadian women than American,
especially in their 20s
More Americans view religion as an important part of their daily
Sexuality in Prehistory
Stone age
Worship of women’s ability to bear children
Women portrayed w large sex organs & large hips & breasts
Ignorance of male’s contribution to reproduction
Phallic worship appeared as people became more aware of the
male role
Shift from hunting & gathering society to farming & shepherding
penis was glorified
Incest taboo – brother-sister marriages permitted only among the
wealthy rulers kept wealth in the family
Ancient Hebrews
Viewed sex w the desire to be fruitful & multiply
Homosexual relations were strongly condemned thought to
threaten perpetuation of family
Adultery also condemned Hebrews practiced Monogamy

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Approved of sex within marriage for pleasure & fulfillment helped
strengthen marital bonds & family
Wife = husband’s property
oCould be stoned to death for committing adultery
oMay have to share husband w other wives if he chooses
oMale adulterers not put to death, but still considered a
Ancient Greeks
500-300 BCE time of Socrates, Aristotle & Plato
valued family life
nude wrestling among men
Greeks viewed their Gods – Zeus, Apollo, Aphrodite – as voracious
seekers of sexual variety
Pederasty: love of boys (pedo)
Greeks viewed men & women as bisexual – homosexual activity
was ok as long as it didn’t threaten the institution of the family
Courtesan: a prostitute, mistress of a noble/wealthy man
Concubine: secondary wife, usually of inferior legal and social
Ancient Romans
Emperors sponsored orgies at which guests engaged in a variety of
sexual practices found more often among upper classes
Male-male sexual behaviour viewed as a threat to the integrity of
the Roman family & the woman
Roman women more likely to share their husbands’ social lives
Early Christians
Adultery & fornication rampant among upper classes of Rome
Restricted sex to marriage
Virgin brides sex is for procreating only
Prostitution was condemned
Divorce was outlawed
Founded by Mohammad
Treasures marriage & sexual fulfillment in marriage

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Premarital sex = shame
Sexual double standard men can have up to 4 wives but women
may only have 1 husband
Women keep faces & heads veiled to avoid all contact w other men
Sex = religious duty, not a source of shame or guilt
More restrictive to sex after 1000 CE
Sexuality was akin to spirituality a sacred duty
Men supposed to make their partner orgasm to increase the flow of
energy he might absorb
Wasteful for a man to spill his seed masturbation = no no
Frowned upon homosexuality
“good wife” was limited to a domestic role
Medieval Christians
Mary = the ideal of womanhood good, gracious, loving, saintly
Protestant Reformers
MLK believed priests should be allowed to marry & have kids
Sex fulfilled legitimate roles such as strengthening bonds &
relieving stress
Extramarital & premarital stress still taboo
The Victorians
Sex wasn’t discussed in a polite society
Sex = a marital duty procreation or satisfy husband’s cravings
Women assumed not to experience sexual desires/pleasures
Sex drained the man of his natural vitality wasting the seed sex
wasn’t recommended more than once a month
Recommended men had a diet of simple foods based on whole-
grain flours to control their desires
Prostitution flourished
Homosexuality = indecent
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