What We Know About What We Want

It is interesting to look at the study of sexual desire. One may ask just how you measure a person’s yearning for sex but at the same time, don’t we always try to quantify behavior? In particular, this question gets messy when taking into account not just how much a person may desire but what a person may desire. From heterosexuality to homosexuality to bisexuality to asexuality, there are a plethora of choices when it comes to sexual preference.

In particular, asexuality seems to be a tabooed topic in our society. And by tabooed, I suppose I mean misunderstood. Nicole Prause and Cynthia A. Graham listed advantages and disadvantages of asexuality according to their study. This provokes thought regarding just how society and different populations of society may view individual sexual preferences and the advantages and disadvantages presumably associated with each. It is interesting to note the variation of these opinions that would rise across different cultures, lifestyles, and levels of understanding.

In addition to the opinions regarding sexuality and the levels of understanding an individual may possess, time also plays a role. Looking back on the understanding we have already gained regarding the environment of Emory in the old days, it is safe to assert that sex was not an openly discussed topic. This raises the question of whether people really did not desire sex as much back then or was the desire the same but the social acceptance different. In this case, perhaps there were advantages to asexuality. As seen in the “Schools Out: Asexy Teens” piece, family and sex do not mix. It’s just not right. I’m not sure I want to think about a breastfeeding mother at the same time I am watching the Victoria Secret fashion show. Now this is a little extreme, but the point remains the same. Perhaps in these times back in the day, the focus was more on family. Just like water and oil, there can’t be a smooth mix of priority in terms of sex and family.

Whatever the case for the older times, the here and now shows that sex is a big deal. Although not thoroughly understood, sexual desire and preference seems to be an undertone of our society.

One thought on “What We Know About What We Want

  1. JSmit: In future posts, when you make reference to our class readings as a way to support your argument, use *specific* quotes to do this, rather than simply saying the authors talked about advantages and disadvantages. Help the reader to understand what *specifically* the authors said and what you thought about those points.

    On to your content: I am intrigued with your discussion of family (as indicated by breastfeeding) and sex (as indicated by Victoria’s Secret runway show). While I understand both legally and genetically why family and sex shouldn’t mix, I am struck by the examples you chose. Both focus, in many ways, on breasts, right? Breast feeding and the breasts of the VS models falling out of the bras they are modeling. Why should one breast (the breast feeding breast) be covered up when the other (the VS model breast) be on display. They are both breasts, right? Many a feminist scholar has engaged with this issue. I would just love to hear your thoughts.

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