Psychology 2035A/B Chapter Notes - Chapter 12: Prejudice, Twin Study, Ejaculation

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-Sexual identity – refers to “the complex personal qualities, self-perceptions, attitudes,
values and preferences that guide one’s sexual behavior."
-Sexual identity includes four key features.
-1. Sexual orientation
oHeterosexuals “seek emotional-sexual relationships with members of the other
oHomosexuals “seek emotional-sexual relationships with members of same
oBisexuals “seek emotional-sexual relationships with members of both genders."
-2. Sexual values and ethics
oAbsolutism – no sexual activity outside of marriage
oRelativism – the relationship determines whether sexual activity is appropriate
oHedonism – anything goes
-3. Erotic preferences
-Hormones and sexual differentiation
oDuring prenatal development, the gonads produce androgens (the male hormone,
testosterone) causing masculinization of the genitals in the male fetus.
-At puberty estrogens and androgens exert trigger maturation of sexual traits and organs
in girls and boys, respectively.
oMenarche is “the occurrence of menstruation” in females.
oSpermarche is “the first ejaculation” in males.
Gender Difference in Sexual Socialization
-Society teaches us that men are more sexual than women.
-However, this difference is exaggerated.
-Four small differences:
oMen are slightly more likely to engage in sex.
oMen have sex more frequently and have more sex partners.
oMen are more permissive in their attitudes toward sex.
oWomen are more likely to feel negative emotions (e.g. shame, guilt, fear) in
response to sex.
-Larger gender differences include the following:
o1. Men engage in more casual sex
o2. Men masturbate more often
o3. Men use pornography more often
-Socialization may affect these differences by
oEncouraging males to experiment sexually, to initiate sex, and to enjoy sex
without emotional connection
oTeaching girls to view sex in the context of a loving relationship
oEmphasizing negative associations girls have with sex: pain; guilt and shame;
fear of pregnancy
Sexual Orientation
-Most people view heterosexuality and homosexuality as two distinct categories.
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