Sociology & Psychology Queer Links

"A Sexual Orientation Worksheet" by Ben Roe, and "Using the Klein Scale to Teach About Sexual Orientation" by Bobbi Keppel and Alan Hamilton are two web pages explaining the Klein Sexual Orientation Grid, which was developed by Fritz Klein, M.D., for his 1978 book The Bisexual Option. The Klein Sexual Orientation Grid expands upon the more traditional Kinsey Scale by, among other things, acknowledging that people's sexual orientations can change over time. Please note that Alfred Kinsey himself did not believe sexual orientations were inherently fixed or unchanging either—he only intended his scale to measure people's past sexual experiences, not to imply that their orientations were eternally fixed. The Klein Sexual Orientation Grid goes beyond the Kinsey Scale, however, by explicitly attempting to measure the changes in people's sexual orientations over time. It assigns Kinsey ratings to people's past, present, and "ideal" orientations in various categories including sexual attraction, sexual behavior, and sexual identity.

The Multidimensional Scale of Sexuality was developed by B. R. Berkey, T. Perelman-Hall and L. A. Kurdek, and was published in "The Multidimensional Scale of Sexuality," Journal of Homosexuality, Vol. 19, pp. 67-87, 1990. Like the Klein Sexual Orientation Grid described above, this scale too acknowledges that people's sexual orientations can change over time—and it offers such categories as "past heterosexual, currently homosexual" and "past homosexual, currently heterosexual" among its scoring categories.

"Sexual Orientation" from the Robert Koch Institut in Berlin, Germany

"Homosexuality: What Kinsey Really Said" by William H. DuBay. "Forty years after sex researcher Alfred Kinsey told us that the world is not made up of two different kinds of people, gay and straight, we still read in the papers, 'According to Kinsey, one out of ten (or one out of seven or five, depending on who is writing the piece) is homosexual.' Such statements must have Kinsey spinning in his grave. Not only did he never make any such statements, he went out of his way to disclaim them. . . . Kinsey was not the first or the last to observe that "homosexual" is a label society has invented to stigmatize and control the behavior. He repeatedly condemned the practice of labelling people homosexual."

"Feminine Males: A Social Construction of Suicide Problems" by Pierre Tremblay and Richard Ramsay, University of Calgary Faculty of Social Work, from their collaborative work The Social Construction of Male Homosexuality and Related Suicide Problems: Research Proposals for the Twenty-First Century, 2000.

"The Earth Is Not Flat? Most Men Say They Are 100% Heterosexual—What Is the 'Heterosexuality' These Men Claim To Have? Was 'It' Learned?" by Pierre Tremblay, 1998.

"Homosexuality as Deviance" from the Robert Koch Institut in Berlin, Germany

Numerous articles on the "Exotic Becomes Erotic" theory of sexual orientation by Daryl J. Bem, Cornell University Psychology Department. "Most biological theories of homosexuality are based on the evolutionary argument that heterosexuality is the natural consequence of reproductive advantage and, accordingly, homosexuality is a relatively rare evolutionary anomaly that requires additional theorizing to account for it. In contrast, EBE theory 'deprivileges' heterosexuality completely, viewing it as no more biologically natural than homosexuality. Ironically, it accomplishes this by denaturalizing both homosexuality and heterosexuality, by insisting that they are social constructions, not hardwired properties of the human species."—"Exotic Becomes Erotic: A Political Postscript (Version 2.0)" by Daryl J. Bem, excerpted from invited address at the annual meeting of the American Psychological Association, 1997.

"Sexual Identity" by Ken Jett, from The Human Sexuality Web

"The Question of Questions: Beyond Binary Thinking" by Janet M. Bing and Victoria L. Bergvall, Rethinking Language and Gender Research, 1997.

A very psychoanalytically-inflected book review by Lolita Lark, from RALPH: The Review of Arts, Literature, Philosophy and the Humanities, Vol. XIV No. 2, Summer 1998, discussing Martin Duberman's book Midlife Queer: Autobiography of a Decade: 1971-1981. "First off, there is now no doubt that being gay is a personal choice—albeit, a choice made very early on in life."

The Pink Practice is a British Queer Counseling and Psychotherapy practice offering "social constructionist, systemic and narrative therapy." In other words, if you're looking for a therapist who respects your right to choose to be queer, this is a great place to go.

The Ninth Street Center is an organization devoted to promoting the work of queer psychiatrist Paul Rosenfels, who was one of the first openly queer American psychiatrists. An important basis to Rosenfels's theories was the fact that he learned, as the website puts it, "to understand his homosexuality not as a genetic defect that he was just born with, but as a logical consequence of psychological polarity."

"A Hunger for Science: Psychoanalysis and the 'Gay Gene'" by Ona Nierenberg, from differences, Vol. 10 No. 1. "[Dr. Richard] Isay's goal in endorsing the [theory of] genetic determination of homosexuality is to ensure that homosexual men are not pathologized simply on the basis of their same-sex desire. . . . However, this strategy can never work, because . . . [r]eproductive heterosexuality is not simply another trait that is genetically transmitted; it is the foundational principle of the entire theory. It must be presumed as the imperative of life itself for the transmission of biological traits to even be possible. Given this fundamental and exalted position, it is difficult to see how reproductive sexuality and homosexuality can ever be presumed 'equal' but 'different' within a biologically deterministic framework. The logic of biological determinism can only debase homosexuality as deviant—precisely the position Isay is striving to counter."

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