Siobhan Sommerville's Article: Scientific Racism And The Homosexual Body

728 Words3 Pages
In nineteenth century, a discourse on homosexuality started to occur; meanwhile, boundaries between black and white became more and more clear. (16) It was the era when the issues that were considered as minority started to appear, and it was also the time when people were reinforcing their ideal “social norms” into the society. It was a dark age for LGBT people, African American people and female. In the article, Scientific Racism and the Homosexual Body, the author, Siobhan Sommerville, makes a strong connection between scientific racism and sexology and women’s bodies. “Although some historians of the scientific discourse on sexuality have included brief acknowledgement of nineteenth century discourses of racial difference in their work,…show more content…
When talking about female homosociality, sisters and friends are the first impressions that come to my mind. Female homosociality compares to male homosociality, seems to have a closer and more intimate relationship. Also, male, white and heterosexual tend to be superior to female, black and homosexual. If people on the higher class, which is male, white, and heterosexual, have a tendency to switch to the lower class, such as a biological male identifies himself as a female, or a white guy consider himself as a gay, those people’s behaviors will be more unaccepted by the mass, cause they are not treasuring their original high status. On the other hand, people in the lower class tend to have connections with the lower class itself, it seems to be more accepted. For instance, if two guys are holding hands on the street, people will directly relate them as gay and may be more unfriendly to them; however, if same thing happen to girls, people will just view them as good friends. That is why studies on sexology in the nineteenth century mainly focus on female. As Ellis asserts “We are accustomed to a such greater familiarity and intimacy between women than between men, and we are less apt to suspect the existence of any abnormal passion.” (28) By observing female homosexual people, we can get the data that we used to ignore…show more content…
“One of the most consistent medical characterizations of the anatomy of both African women and lesbians was the myth of an unusually large clitoris.” (27) Another medical journals in 1921 also stated that “Female homosexuality will in practically every instance disclose an abnormally prominent clitoris, and so in colored women.” (27) Even though these data may sometimes be exaggerated because researchers wanted to emphasize on the difference, it still showed that women’s bodies had a strong connection with race and sexuality

    More about Siobhan Sommerville's Article: Scientific Racism And The Homosexual Body

      Open Document