This paper examines historical discourse on sexuality and gender identity how this history informs perceptions of sexual orientation and gender inequality. This paper traces the history and development of the conceptualization of gender roles and gender identity and how sexual orientation is dictated by those roles and identities. Therefore this paper is divided into two main parts. The first part of this paper examines the history and development of heterosexuality as a social construction of gender roles, gender identity and sexual orientation. The second part of this paper examines the history and development of non-heterosexual identity and how traditional gender roles and identity influence how non-heterosexual identities are treated by the dominant heterosexually constructed society. Sexual Orientation and Inequality Introduction Gender inequality on the basis of sexual orientation is deeply rooted in social constructs that dictate gender identity and gender roles (Tomsen & Mason, 2001). Historically, sexuality was informed by a perception that heterosexuality is the norm and sexuality is understood by reference to heterosexual norms and standards (Kitzinger, 2006). In this regard, heterosexual norms typically link heterosexuality to nature and thus being heterosexual means being normal or being normal (Sullivan, 2003). Therefore homosexuality, lesbianism, and bisexuality are judged by reference to the dominant heterosexual norm. This paper examines the definitions and historical developments informing sexual orientation and gender identity and identifies why sexual orientation forms the basis for gender inequality. It is argued that although, non-heterosexuals have made significant gains in terms of political, legal and social acceptance, preconceived notions of non-heterosexuality continues to be a basis of social marginalization. It would therefore appear, that marginalization on the grounds of sexual orientation may never be fully eliminated. It would appear that as long as cultural institutions formally alienate non-heterosexuals, it can be expected that social alienation of non-heterosexuals will be perpetuated. This research paper is divided into two main parts. The first part of this paper examines the history and development of heterosexuality and what this means for conceptualizing non-heterosexual identities. The second part of this paper examines the history and development of the conceptualization non-heterosexuals and how this conceptualization has changed over time. Heterosexuality Up to the 1980s, heterosexuality was defined in dictionaries as natural sexual relations. It was only during the 1980s that dictionaries defined heterosexuality as sexual relations between persons of the “opposite sex” (Sullivan, 2003, p. 119). It therefore follows that historically heterosexuality was defined in a way that distinguishes non-heterosexuality as abnormal and thus formed the basis of discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation. Despite a revised dictionary definition of heterosexuality, attitudes toward heterosexuality as natural sexual relations remained unchanged for the most part. As Caplan (1987) observed, any indication that individuals did not conform to heterosexual norms was perceived as a threat to normative perceptions of sexuality and what should be normal. Although prejudice against non-heterosexuality has declined persistently since the 1990s, prejudice continues to remain prevalent throughout the US (Herek, 2000). In the US heterosexism and religious fundamentalism”
Historically, gender inequality has always been based on perceptions that men and women are different from one another (Okin, 1996).This paper examines historical discourse on sexuality and gender identity how this history informs perceptions of sexual orientation and gender inequality…
This is evidenced in publications such as mark twain’s huckleberry Finn, which is a book written a long time after the emancipation of slaves though it still reflects a society that is engraved in racial profiling. In the book, black men are referred to as Negros, and they still call their employers master.
In general there is always a special distinction between males and females. Their varying lifestyles could probably explain it all. Their emotional aspects could also prove the basic differences between a male and a female. In other words, based on observation, so much can be understood about the sexual identity most particularly on a person’s sexual orientation.
These acts of violence and intimidation against these people induce both physical and psychological torture to the victims an event, which may even lead to suicide of the victim. In most of the western countries these groups have been legalized thus inducing violence over them is termed as a hate crime and exist most preferably among the religious activists or the extreme political persons.
Francis (3) adds that such statements are commonly offensive and objectionable on the side of the recipient and may result in discomfort and mental trauma. The most disgusting part of the entire act of sexual harassment is that it is gender biased since the female person is the most vulnerable in most of the cases (Linda & Hajdin 11).
In case of slavery, certain individuals are recognized as owners of other individuals who are regarded as their assets and slaves. Those who own slaves manipulate them in order to gain benefits that are material in nature. Slavery has been witnessed by Americans since the start of the creation of New World when Europeans migrated to the Americas for economic gains and it came to an end after the civil war when the African American slaves fought for their freedom.
Before this process, the human embryo is sexually indifferent, but with time, the gonad differentiates into either testis or an ovary. This essay seeks to analyzethe arguments brought forward by Swaab (2007) in his article concerning sexual differentiation of the brain and its effects on gender and sexual orientation.
There are others that use different questionnaires and background information that is combined to gather scores that are used for assessment. At least one combines the two – a questionnaire combined with objective measures that includes physiological changes that occur in response to stimuli.
The child abuse fact sheet, (2009), explains that child abuse is not only perpetrated by adults but can also occur between children, who may be of similar ages or a victim who is slightly younger. Cruise, (2004) states that acts of sexual acts of sexual abuse will involve a child who cannot or is not in a position to give informed consent.
However, according in the introduction of Karl Ulrich Mayer (2008) in the book Analyzing inequality: Life Chances and Social Mobility in Comparative Perspective, the above mentioned aspects affect the individuals differently in various countries and areas.
These perceptions create feelings, attitudes, and behaviors that a given culture creates for different sexes. However, distinct to gender, which often refers to social or cultural differences, sexuality refers to physiological and biological
6 pages (1500 words)Term Paper
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