Same Sex, Different Cultures
Gays and Lesbians Across Cultures
By (author) Gilbert H. Herdt
Same Sex, Different Cultures by Gilbert H. Herdt
Book DescriptionBecause homoerotic relations can be found in so many cultures, Gilbert Herdt argues that we should think of these relations as part of the human condition. This new cross-cultural study of gays, lesbians, and bisexuals around the world, Same Sex, Different Cultures provides a unique perspective on maturing and living within societies, both historical and contemporary, that not only acknowledge but also incorporate same-gender desires and relations.Examining what it means to organize "sex" in a society that lacks a category for "sex," or to love someone of the same gender when society does not have a "homosexual" or "gay/lesbian" role, Herdt provides provocative new insights in our understanding of gay and lesbians lives. Accurate in both its scientific conceptions and wealth of cultural and historical material, examples range from the ancient Greeks and feudal China and Japan to the developing countries of Africa, India, Mexico, Brazil, and Thailand, from a New Guinea society to contemporary U.S. culture, including Native Americans. For all of these peoples, homoerotic relations emerge as part of culture--and not separate from history or society.In many of these groups, loving or engaging in sexual relations is found to be the very basis of the local cultural theory of "human nature" and the mythological basis for the cosmos and the creation of society. The mistake of modern Western culture, Gilbert contends, is to continue the legalization of prejudice against lesbians and gays.In this light, the book addresses the issue of "universal" versus particular practices and reveals positive role models that embrace all aspects of human sexuality. Finally, it offers knowledge of the existence of persons who have loved and have been intimate sexually and romantically with the same gender in other lands through divergent cultural practices and social roles.The most important lesson to learn from this cross-cultural and historical study of homosexuality is that there is room for many at the table of humankind.
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Book DetailsISBN: 9780813331645
(229mm x 152mm x 15mm)
Imprint: Westview Press Inc
Publisher: The Perseus Books Group
Publish Date: 3-Apr-1998
Country of Publication: United States
Books By Author Gilbert H. Herdt
Sexual Inequalities and Social Justice, Paperback (December 2006)
Signals the emergence of a different paradigm of social analysis committed to understanding and analyzing social oppression in the context of sexuality and gender. This collection of ten essays illuminates the role of sexuality in producing and reproducing inequality, difference, and structural violence.
Gay and Lesbian Aging, Hardback (November 2003)
The year 2003 marks the 30th anniversary of the landmark "declassification" of homosexuality as a disease by the American Psychiatric Association - a watershed in the lives of gays and lesbians in the US. This volume deals with the issues concerning the health, mental health, and concomitant special social service needs of this population.
Something to Tell You, Paperback (May 2001)
An internationally known anthropologist and an eminent social worker/psychotherapist show how families can thrive and actually grow through the creation of more honest relationships when a son or daughter comes out.
Sambia Sexual Culture, Paperback (August 1999)» View all books by Gilbert H. Herdt
This collection of essays on the sexual culture of the Sambia of Papua New Guinea examines: fetish and fantasy; ritual nose-bleeding; the role of homoerotic insemination; the role of the father and mother in the process of identity formation; and the creation of a "third sex" in nature and culture.
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Author Biography - Gilbert H. Herdt
Gilbert Herdt is professor of human sexuality, professor of anthropology, and director of Human Sexuality Studies Programs at San Francisco State University. He is the author of numerous articles and fifteen books, including Guardians of the Flutes: Idioms of Masculinity and Sambia: Ritual and Gender in New Guinea, and coauthor of Children of Horizons: How Gay and Lesbian Youth Are Forging a New Way Out of the Closet.
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