Human Sexuality Reflection Paper
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The term sexuality refers to the identities we construct based on our sexual conduct. Every culture has what is referred to as a sexual script. A sexual script is a set of ideas and practices that determine who we have sex with, what is considered sex, how often, and why we have sex. This idea was brought forth by John Gagnon in 1977. He also introduced the term sexual socialization. Sexual socialization is the culmination of our learning of the sexual tendencies of influences surrounding us. Our desires can be effected by what your culture accepts as well. Sexuality varies with time periods as well.
The books cites an example of how fifty years ago muscular men were ugly and it was in to be slim. Now it is quite obvious that a man needs to be very much in shape to achieve today’s idea of sexy in the United States. Sexual behavior is any behavior that brings sexual pleasure or release. Behavior can differ widely from culture to culture. We tend to engage in acts which can be classified as deviant when it comes to our sexual behavior. One example is the subject of autoeroticism. Pleasing one’s self is considered taboo yet according to Laumann and Michaels ninety percent of men admit to participating in it with forty percent of women as well.
Sexual Identity is an identity that is organized by the gender of the person to whom we are sexually attracted to. If you are attracted to the opposite sex you are considered to be heterosexual. If you are attracted to the same sex you are considered to be homosexual. However, if you are attracted to both you are identified as a bi sexual. No matter how a person feels about what orientation they are it does not seem possible to change the orientation of any person to another identity. It is thought that orientation is relatively stable by the age of five maybe earlier. Regardless of hoe much society approves or disapproves, your sexual orientation remains the same.
Humans have always been interested about the topic of sex. As early as the 1800’s European authors were publishing studies about sex. People such as Richard bon Krafft-Ebbing, Havelock Ellis, and Magnus Hirschfeld. Each has had a major influence determining what we know about sex. In 1903 Hirschfeld conducted the first ever sex survey, and he discovered that 2.2 percent of the German population was in fact homosexual. He founded the Institute of Sex Research in 1919. In 1933 Nazis confiscated and destroyed all of his works do to he himself being gay and Jewish. The standard for modern sex research was set by Alfred Kinsey. Kinsey documented to sexual desires and tendencies of over 18,000 Americans. For years the books he published with the knowledge he obtained were the definitive works on American sexual behavior.
In America men have been taught to see sex as the ultimate goal while women see sex as an integral part of a relationship. However as time progress the two different views have been converging due primarily to the way people interact now. Hooking up is a somewhat new and different way of dating. In this act sex is observed as almost casual. Societies with higher gender equality report greater satisfaction with sex.
Pornography, prostitution, and sex tourism have come more into the mainstream with the introduction of the internet as well as the increase in globalization. The movie Taken was based on the illegal trafficking of women who are kidnapped and sold into prostitution to the highest bidder. These sort or actions are an unfortunate truth in society and cause further inequality between men and women.
Kimmel, Michael, and Amy Aronson. Sociology Now. Boston: Allyn Bacon, 2009. Print.