BREAKING OUT OF THE DOMINANT PARADIGM: A NEW LOOK AT SEXUAL ATTRACTION, GISELA T. KAPLAN, LESLEY J. ROGERS,JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1984, VOL 10(3/4), P71-75.
Concepts of sexuality based on the physical sex of partners limit the way in which human sexuality is conceived and investigated. The shift in focus of inquiry from the sexual identity of individuals to the structure of their sexual relationship is an important step towards exploding concepts that, for the most part, have been severely restricted to male-female genital distinctions. This article argues that the genital organs are not the prime focus of sexual attraction. Careful studies may reveal that sexual arousal is based on criteria that transcend genital categories. To determine the basis of sexual attraction it is important to investigate an amalgam of characteristics - those related and unrelated to the partners' physical sex. There are indications that individuals with a greater mix of feminine and masculine characteristics (both mental and physical) are actually more arousing than those who fall closer to the stereotypes. The arts, it is suggested, have exploited this phenomenon.
A COMMENT ON CULTURAL ATTRIBUTES AND FLUIDITY OF BISEXUALITY, GILBERT H. HERDT, JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1984, VOL 10(3/4), P53-61.
Selected aspects of the "essentialist" critiques and reviews in Bisexual and Homosexual Identities: Critical Theoretical Issues (De Cecco & Shively, eds, 1983/1984) of the idea of the bisexual identity are examined from the standpoint of their cross-cultural significance. Examples from recent studies in Melanesia are used to highlight possible areas of exploration for future research in homosexuality and bisexuality. The idea of fluidity of sexual identity is examined, including the associated notion of sexual desire.
BEYOND THE BIOLOGICAL MODEL: NEW DIRCTIONS IN BISEXUAL AND HOMOSEXUAL RESEARCH, MICHAEL W. ROSS, JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1984, VOL 10(3/4), P63-70.
Past research on homosexuality has been based on two assumptions: one, that gender is the critical determinant of a sexual relationshp, and two, that sexual orientation is an essential condition. This paper argues that investigation of sexual relationships on these bases tests only within, rather than between, paradigms of possible relationships. It assumes that choice of partners is based on a number of physical and psychological characteristics apart from their biological sex and that different meanings of sexuality and of the contexts of sexual encounters will determine which characteristics are chosen. It is also suggested that comparisons between groups of exclusive homosexuals and exclusive heterosexuals will not cast light on preferred partner characteristics. It is therefore necessary to look at the preferred partner characteristics of bisexuals in order to understand the bases and significance of homosexual or heterosexual partner choice. Finally, it is concluded that the meanings of homosexuality in different contexts may be so varied that the possibility of establishing a unified theory of the homosexual identity is precluded.
JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1985, VOL 11(1/2): BISEXUALITIES: THEORY AND RESEARCH INCLUDES:
BISEXUALITY RECONSIDERED: AN IDEA IN PURSUIT OF A DEFINITION, CHARLES E. HANSEN, ANNE EVANS, P1-6.
This paper examines the confusion and conflict stemming from the inability of sexological research to establish a reliable operational definition of the bisexual condition. An examination of current research assumptions, definitions, and limitations revealed several "errors" which predispose most investigations to controversial or insignificant results. These errors include the researcher's: (1) erotophobia, (2) dualistic thinking, (3) use of "self-labels," and most important, (4) misuse of the Kinsey Scale as a basic definitional assumption.
This paper concludes with a description of an alternative research model and methodology for bisexuality research. This new model eschews subject labeling and proposes a two-axis system for operationally defining bisexuality and for generating testable hypotheses.
IDENTITY CONFLICT OR ADAPTIVE FLEXIBILITY? BISEXUALITY RECONSIDERED, GARY ZINIK, P7-19.
A definition of bisexuality is offered, followed by a discussion of two opposing models of bisexual functioning: (1) the "conflict model," which views bisexuality as problematic, stemming from identity conflict and confusion that marks a transitional stage to a homosexual orientation; and (2) the "flexibility model," which views bisexuality as the coexistence of heteroeroticism and homoeroticism, as the successful integration of homosexual and heterosexual identities into a dual sexual orientation. The Kinsey data are reviewed in an effort to determine the incidence of bisexuality in the U.S. population. Finally, specific clinical and empirical studies investigating bisexual subjects are reviewed in light of the two models.
BISEXUALTIY: REASSESSING OUR PARADIGMS OF SEXUALITY, JAY P. PAUL, P21-34.
Sexuality research currently needs to re-examine critically its constructs of sexual orientation and identify for theoretical inconsistencies and simplistic assumptions about the nature of sexual desire continue to plague it. This becomes evident when one reviews how the confluence of heterosexual and homosexual desire in individuals is "explained" by theories that assume a basic dichotomy in sexual orientation. This article examines how categories such as homosexual, heterosexual, and bisexual have developed, and differentiates between their utility as social labels and as scientific constructs. The intrusion of social and political considerations into the scientific investigation of sexuality is noted, and it is suggested that the use of these labels impedes rather than advances such study.
SEXUAL ORIENTATION: A MULTI-VARIABLE DYNAMIC PROCESS, FRITZ KLEIN, BARRY SEPEKOFF, TIMOTHY J. WOLF, P35-49.
Theory and research concerning sexual orientation has been restricted in its scope and influence by the lack of clear and widely accepted definitions of terms like heterosexual, bisexual, and homosexual. In an attempt to better demarcate and understand the complexities of human sexual attitudes, emotions, and behavior, the Klein Sexual Orientation Grid (KSOG) was developed and administered. The KSOG is composed of seven variables that are dimensions of sexual orientation, each of which is rated by the subject as applying to the present, past, or ideal. Analysis of the data from subjects who filled out the KSOG in Forum Magazine indicated that the instrument was a reliable and valid research tool which took into consideration the multi-variable and dynamic aspects of sexual orientation.
PSYCHO-SOCIAL ISSUES RELATING TO COUNSELING BISEXUALS, DAVID N. LOUREA, P51-62.
An increasing number of persons who experience bisexual feelings or behaviors are seeking professional couseling. This article explores the psycho-social issues related to couseling individuals and couples concerned about their own or their partner's feelings, fantasies, or behaviors with both men and women, and the appropriateness or inappropriateness of adopting a bisexual identity or developing a bisexual life-style. The steps for helping individuals to differentiate problems, handle confusion, and conceptualize bisexuality are outlined. The counseling process with bisexuals includes developing support systems, examining internalized homophobia and sex-role stereotyping, helping them deal with heterosexual concerns, and with issues which affect partners when one or both is bisexual.
BISEXUAL WOMEN IN MARRIAGES, ELI COLEMAN, P87-99.
A clinical sample of women who were currently or previously married were surveyed regarding demographics, homosexual experiences before marriage, problems in marriage, and sexual orientation. The average age of the 45 participants was 35.9. Before marriage, 21 (47%) were somewhat aware of their homosexual feelings but were much less likely to have thought of or identified themselves as homosexuals. Sexual difficulties were very common in these marriages (89%), the most cited sexual difficulty being a lack of sexual desire for their spouse (62%). Based upon Kinsey-type ratings, the sample could be described as almost exclusively heterosexual in behavior and fantasies before marriage. Some changes could be seen during marriage toward more of a homosexual orientation. The dramatic change, however, occurred following marriage, when the women reported even more of a homosexual orientation, tending toward the homosexual end of the Kinsey continuum. At the time of the study, a majority of the sample was, in fact, relating almost exclusively to other women. This study found that, compared to homosexual men who have been married, these women are more likely to marry at an earlier age, unlikely to be aware of their homosexual feelings prior to marriage, and more likely to terminate their marriage earlier because of conflicts arising as a result of their bisexual orientation and sexual dissatisfaction.
SEXUALITY AND RELATIONSHIP CHANGES IN MARRIED FEMALES FOLLOWING THE COMMENCEMENT OF BISEXUAL ACTIVITY, JOAN K. DIXON, P115-133.
Some of the changes in sexual behavior and relationships with spouses and other females following the commencement of bisexual activity by women after the age of 30 were studied by conducting in-depth personal interviews with 50 women. Each partricipant, at the time of her first sexual activity with another female: (a) was married; (b) was at least 30; (c) was, with her spouse, engaging in consensual swinging activities; (d) was enjoying sex with males; and (e) had no history, prior to age 30, of sexual attraction to females. Generally, the subjects revealed high levels of participation in, and enjoyment of, sexual activity with other females, in addition to high levels of enjoyable heterosexual activity. Their generally happy and stable marriages tended somewhat to improve, as did their overall sex lives, and they saw their relationships with other females as significantly improved. Significant changes in sexual fantasies occurred. In all cases, sexual orientation became bisexual, but overall preferences for male sex partners did not change.
A BIBLIOGRAPHYN ON BISEXUALITY, CHARLES STEIR, P235-248.
WHEN DOES THE UNITY OF A "COMMON OPPRESSION" BREAK DOWN? RECIPROCAL ATTITUDES BETWEEN LESBIAN AND BISEXUAL WOMEN, PAULA CLAIRE RUST-RODRIGUEZ, DISSERTATION ABSTRACTS INTERNATIONAL, 1990, VOL 50(8) P2668.
THE MULTIDIMENSIONAL SCALE OF SEXUALITY, BRADEN ROBERT BERKEY, TERRI PERLMAN-HALL, LAWRENCE A. KURDEK, JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1990, VOL 19(4), P67-87.
Research on the assessment of sexual orientation has been limited, and what does exist is often conflicting and confusing. This is largely due to the lack of any agreed upon definition of bisexuality. The Multidimensional Scale of Sexuality (MSS) was developed to validate and to contrast six proposed categories of bisexuality, as well as categories related to heterosexuality, homosexuality, and asexuality. This instrument includes ratings of the behavioral and cognitive/affective components of sexuality. The MSS as completed by 148 subjects, the majority of whom were from identified homosexual and bisexual populations. Although subjects' self-descriptions on the MSS were consistent with their self-descritions on the Kinsey Heterosexual-Homosexual Scale, the MSS provided a more varied description of sexual orientation. Subject's self-described sexual orientation on the MSS was more consistent with their cognitive/affective ratings than with their behavioral ratings. With the exception of self-described heterosexuals, the frequency of cognitive/affective sexuality was greater than that of behavioral sexuality.
THE POLITICS OF SEXUAL IDENTITY: SEXUAL ATTRACTION AND BEHAVIOR AMONG LESBIAN AND BISEXUAL WOMEN, PAULA C. RUST, SOCIAL PROBLEMS, 1992, VOL 39(4), P366-386.
In the lesbian community, one which is based upon a shared sexual minority identity, recent attempts to add the category "bisexual" to the prevailing dichotomous conceptualization of sexuality have led to various popular conceptualizations of sexuality. Lesbian-identified women disagree among themselves with bisexual-identified women over whether bisexuality exists, and if so, what it is. As a result, individuals develop lesbian and bisexual identities based on differing conceptions of sexuality, thereby undermining the basis for affiliation among women with a shared sexual identity. This paper, based upon data from 365 lesbian- and bisexual-identified women who were questioned about their sexual identity histories, behaviors, and feelings of sexual attraction, demonstrates that while there are aggregate differences between the experiences of lesbian and bisexual women, there is also a wide range of sexual experience common to both groups. The paper argues that the tension which characterizes relations between lesbian- and bisexual-identified women is not the result of failure to recognize these similarities in experience. Instead, historical circumstances have led to a situation in which bisexuality poses a personal and political threat to lesbians and lesbian politics; the similarity between lesbians' and bisexuals' experiences aggravates rather than mitigates this threat.
NEUTRALIZING THE POLITICAL THREAT OF THE MARGINAL WOMAN: LESBIANS' BELIEFS ABOUT BISEXUAL WOMEN, PAULA C. RUST, THE JOURNAL OF SEX RESEARCH, 1993, VOL 30(3), P214-228.
One might expect lesbian and bisexual women to form a strong alliance because of their common marginalization in a heterosexist and sexist society. But previous research has shown that tension exists between lesbian and bisexual women and that some segments of the lesbian community consider bisexuality a threat to lesbian politics. In this article I report data on beliefs about bisexual women gathered from 346 self-identified lesbians via self-adminstered questionnaires and discuss the relationship between lesbian and bisexual women as a special case of intergroup relations. Most lesbian respondents believed that bisexual identity is more likey than lesbian identity to be a phase or a way of denying one's true sexuality and that bisexual women are less personally and politically loyal and more willing and able to pass as heterosexual than are lesbians. Lesbians' beliefs about bisexual women were uncorrelated with demographics, but lesbians who reported having some heterosexual feelings were less inclined to hold derogatory beliefs about bisexual women than were lesbians whose feelings were exclusively homosexual. On the basis of inter-group relations theory, I argue that lesbian-bisexual relations are in the "amicable consensus" stage of political develoment (Jackman & Senter, 1983) and that lesbians' attitudes are likely to change as the nascent bisexual political movement grows in strength. Methodological issues pertaining to the measurement of lesbians' attitudes toward sexuality, including the reactivity of these attitudes to various measurement strategies, are discussed.
LESBIAN,GAY AND BISEXUAL IDENTITIES OVER THE LIFESPAN, PSYCHOLOGICAL PERSPECTIVES, ED ANTHONY R. D'AUGELLIE, CHARLOTTE J. PATTERSON, OXFORD UNIVERSITY PRESS, 1995, INCLUDES:
BISEXUAL IDENTITIES, RONALD C. FOX, P48-86.
OBJECT CHOICE AND ACTUAL BISEXUALITY, A. LIMENTANI, INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF PSYCHOANALYTIC PSYCHOTHERAPY, 1975, VOL 5, P205-217.
Actual bisexuality is to be distinguished from homosexuality in a latent state and from conscious bisexual fantasies. Contemporary social changes have caused an increased demand for help by those men and women capable of engaging in protracted heterosexual and homosexual relations. Among such people narcissistic and border-line states are common.
Clinical material is presented in some detail. The author suggests that the condition is associated with a tendency to be caught up between the anaclitic and narcissistic types of object choice. The concurrent involvement with a male and female love object against a background of pseudogenitality creates the illusory appearance of two objects being involved, covering up the fact that there is splitting of the original love object together with severe preoedipal disturbance.
BISEXUAL, HOMOSEXUAL, AND HETEROSEXUAL: SOCIETY, LAW, AND MEDICINE, JOHN MONEY, JOURNAL OF HOMOSEXUALITY, 1977, VOL 2(3), P229-233.
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