Sexuality—permissiveness v. restrictiveness Sexual deviancy: Permissive: Restrictive:
Childhood Sexuality Hopi Indians of American Southwest—permissive Parents teach their children how to masturbate at young age East Bay (Pacific Island)—restrictive Children discouraged from touching their genitalia in public Boys get “good-natured ridicule” Girls get scolded or hit At age 5 they are told to avoid contact with other sex
Premarital sex Trobriand Islanders (near Papua New Guinea)—permissive Approve of and encourage premarital sex as a chance to prepare for married life Boys and girls are taught all forms of sexual expression at puberty Ila of Central Africa—permissive Girls are given houses to use to have “practice” marriages with boys of their choice Virginity often does not last past age 10 Tepoztlan Indians of Mexico—restrictive Girls are confined once menstruation starts They are not allowed to speak to boys—if she does so, she is considered crazy Muslim societies—restrictive Female virginity is “tested” with white sheets on wedding night Blood stains=virginity Female circumcision used to discourage girls from having sex
Extramarital sex Hopi Indians—permissive Men have “private wives” for instances when wife is uninterested—meant to live a “comfortable” life Navajo Indians—restrictive…sort of Forbid adultery technically, but a study in 1948 showed that 27% of married men’s (under age 30) sexual contacts were with women other than their wives Chukchee of Siberia—permissive Allow married men to have sex with a host’s wife with understanding he will offer the same hospitality Inuits—permissive Common practice for a chief’s wife to be given to a traveler in the tribe as a chance to bring in “new blood”
Homosexuality Lepcha of the Himalayas—restrictive View homosexuals with disgust and feel it is a disease you catch when eating an uncastrated pig Claim that homosexuality does not exist in their culture Papago of American Southwest—permissive “Nights of Saturnalia” Connection to Roman day of tribute to Saturn—influenced Catholic Christmas Transvestites were common that did women’s chores and could marry or be visited by men Women only allowed to take part in Saturnalia when their husbands allow them to do so Sapphic love: Sappho of Lesbos (Greek island): female homosexual relationship Greek female poet that wrote about love of women
Homosexuality (continued) Siwans of North Africa—permissive Expect all males to engage in homosexual relations Fathers make arrangements for unmarried sons to be given to older men Customs rule that one man only gets one boy Study in 1917 shows that most boys still married girls when they reach adulthood Etoro of Papua New Guinea—permissive Prefer homosexuality over heterosexuality Heterosexuality is banned for as much as 260 days a year Forbidden in or near the home or gardens Homosexuality is not prohibited on any day and is believed to make crops flourish and make boys strong
Incest Taboo Incest taboo: prohibition of sex and marriage between mother and son, father and daughter, and brother and sister Only known exceptions to taboo has been royal families (Incans & Hawaiians) Best example of exception to taboo was Cleopatra in Egypt Married to 2 different brothers at different times Family of a Pharaoh was a god, so they couldn’t spoil a god’s blood with a normal human Marriage within the family kept royal property and wealth undivided
Incest Taboo (continued) Theories about why incest taboo is universal: Childhood-Familiarity Theory: 1920s Chinese custum of t’ung-yang-hsi (daughter-in-law raised from childhood) Often poor families will give away or sell their daughter to another family to be raised with her future husband—done only weeks after birth Leads to sexual disinterest, lack of stimulation, and fewer offspring Become more likely to pursue extramarital relationships
A Man may not marry his mother daughter adopted daughter father's mother mother's mother son's daughter daughter's daughter sister wife's mother wife's daughter father's wife son's wife father's father's wife mother's father's wife wife's father's mother wife's mother's mother wife's daughter's daughter wife's son's daughter son's son's wife daughter's son's wife father's sister mother's sister brother's daughter sister's daughter A Woman may not marry with her father son adopted son father's father mother's father son's son daughter's son brother husband's father husband's son mother's husband daughter's husband father's mother's husband mother's mother's husband husband's father's father husband's mother's father husband's son's son husband's daughter's son son's daughter's husband daughter's daughter's husband father's brother mother's brother brother's son sister's son A Table of Kindred and Affinity, Wherein Whosoever Are Related Are Forbidden by the Church of England to Marry Together. (1949 version)
Physical Differences Between the Sexes Sexual dimorphism: Physical differences: Personality differences:
Personality Differences Findings about personality differences from Margaret Mead about 3 tribes in New Guinea during the 1930s: little link between masculine and feminine personality traits and sex No universal sexual personality traits Arapesh: both sexes gentle and maternal Mundugumor: both sexes showed violence and competitiveness Tchambuli: women were domineering, practical, impersonal, and chief economic providers—men were sensitive, delicate, and devoted time to art and their appearances Tchambuli men playing flutes for Mead
More recent thoughts on personality differences Six Cultures Project (1973): comparative study of children in Mexico, New England, Japan, Phillipines, India, & Kenya Boys begin to show more aggression by the age of 3 Older girls begin to show less aggression Girls tend to be more responsible & show ability to nurture Girls tend to conform to adult commands/wishes Boys try to exert dominance to get their own way Boys usually play in larger groups with mostly boys Girls usually play in smaller groups with mostly girls Girls often seek help from others Boys often seek attention and approval 2 theories on why these differences appear: NATURE V. NURTURE 1 st : genetics: estrogen v. testosterone 2 nd : society teaches us how to behave Girls usually asked to do more work—creates responsibility—what happens when you have a boy do more work?
Luo children of Kenya study 1973 study of Luo children Boys assigned less chores b/c they need to work in field Girls assigned traditional “home” chores Village of Luo had a low number of girls born; mothers relied on boys to do more house work Boys that did more house work were less aggressive and more responsible than other boys Possible that both “nature” and “nurture” are important in creating personality differences
Social Roles of the Sexes Males almost always Males usually Either sex or both Females usuallyFemales almost always Subsistence activities Hunt & trapFish, herd animals, clear land, prepare soil Collect shellfish, care for small animals, plant and harvest crops, milk animals Gather wild plants Food prep and household work Butcher animals Preserve meat or fish Care for children, cook, launder, fetch water and fuel Other Work with wood (i.e. musical instruments), work with minerals and stone, warfare, take part in politics Build houses, make nets, make rope Prepare skins, make leather products, baskets, mats, clothing, pottery Spin yarn
Why is division of labor so universal? Strength Theory: Problem: Why do men usually perform tasks such as trapping small animals or making musical instruments? Little physical demands… Compatibility-with-child-care theory: Why do men usually create crafts that are sold, but women make them for home?
One more theory… Economy of Effort Theory: Males make instruments—they collect hard materials needed and have more knowledge of physical properties…makes more sense for them to work with it Women are near home to raise children…makes sense for them to do more house work That’s why during the summer, I am basically a “wife”
Differences in status for men & women Islamic societies (Afghanistan under the Taliban): Women live in purdah: remain secluded & veiled If women must go out of home, they must have male approval & shroud face and body in burqa— must wear in their home if a male is present Women under authority of fathers and husbands Heavy sexual restrictions placed on women— emphasis on virginity—not permitted much access to men before marriage Almost no sexual restrictions placed on men
Why do women tend to be given low status is some societies? Theory 1: women do not make large contributions to subsistence activities Theory 2: cultures that rely on warfare value men more Theory 3: politics is considered a male venture, so women are devalued Theory 4: kin groups are often centered around husband’s family Questions about Hilary still abound as to whether she should ever be President…even the role of her husband overshadows her.
Marriage Marriage: socially approved sexual and economic union between a man and a woman Assumption that union is permanent Requires obligations between spouses and future children Marriage is universal—wedding act varies Future of definition—gay marriage?????
Reasons Marriage is a Universal Ideal Division of labor: men and women perform different tasks in the economy Infant dependency & postpartum requirements: humans have longest dependency period of any primate, so therefore our women need help from men in order to support themselves & the child Sexual competition between males Males are prone to aggression and violence when competing for female love Marriage minimalizes this rivalry
Rare Types of Marriage Cheyenne Indians Married men were permitted to take on berdaches (male transvestites) as 2 nd wives Berdaches were considered to be a 3 rd gender with unique responsibilities Worked in the home like a woman Could go to war or take part in other “manly” activities Often considered to be mystical and possess 2 spirits (male and female spirits) Cheyenne viewed this as not being homosexual or heterosexual—European colonists simply saw it as homosexual and wrong Azande of Sudan Poorer Azande warriors could take part in temporary homosexual marriage If they couldn’t afford a wife, they could marry a “boy- wife” to satisfy sexual and economic needs Gifts had to be given to family of “boy-wife” as in a regular marriage—”boy-wife” was cheaper though Dance to the Berdache
Female-female marriages in African societies Socially accepted marriages so a woman could take on roles of father and husband Sexual relationships were not part of the union “husband” may take over for a kinsman that left no heirs and assign various males to her wife to create heirs “husbands” could be women wishing to gain status and political power in society so they take on role of a husband—again, no sex involved
Economic Aspects to Marriage Bride price Bride service Dowry
Important Terms: Arranged marriages Indian caste marriages Exogamy Endogamy
More important terms Levirate Sororate Monogamy
Yet, even more important terms Polygyny Polyandry Polygamy
The Family Setup Nuclear family Matrifocal family Patrifocal family Matrilocal family Patrilocal family Bilocal residence Neolocal residence
Rules of Descent Patrilineal descent Matrilineal descent Ambilineal descent
Kinship Terminology Classificatory terms: mother, father, sister, brother, aunt, uncle, cousin, etc. Consanguineal kin Affinal kin