The Relationship Between Sexual Taxonomies and Ideas of the Self Essay

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The relationship between sexual taxonomies and ideas of the self (e.g. Foucault, Jagose or Halperin)

Sexual Taxonomies are not trans-historical; they are socially and historically situated and created. Sexual taxonomies are the different ideas about what sexuality is and they circulate around contexts, consequently forming identities. When we categorise sexuality it is categorised into heterosexual people and homosexual people but it is widely known that heterosexual is the ‘normal’ and accepted sexuality as “Homosexuality is a deviation from a privileged and naturalised heterosexuality,” (page 72, Annamarie Jagose, 1996). Terms gay, homo and queer do not mean the same things, “The blanket term "homosexual" has a number of different, related but distinct meanings: there are several groups of people who are covered by this term, and there are significant variations between them,” (Melinda Selmys, 2012) this has created sexual taxonomies regarding homosexual people. The simplest definition of a homosexual is person of the same sex being attracted to the same sex. This can become very confusing when identify the self. Historically homosexuality has been masked, ridiculed and not accepted in society even if they share the same qualities as heterosexual people for example “The vast majority of same sex attracted people have some degree of opposite sex attraction as well [and are defined as] a person who [have] an LGBTQ identity,” (Melinda Selmys, 2012). By observing Michael Foucault in the “The History of Sexuality” (1976) as well as Annamarie Jagose & Judith Butler in “Queer in Queer Theory” (1996), we become aware of different ideas/identities of the self. It also shows the debate and hardships homosexuals experience with self-id...

... middle of paper ... Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Idendity.
Foucault, M. (1976). “Scientia Sexualis”. In The History of Sexuality: Vol 1 (1990). (pp. 53-65). London: Penguin Books.
Hayek, F. A. (1944). The road to serfdom. Chicago, IL: University of Chicago Press.
Hennessy , R. (2000). Profit and Pleasure: Sexual Identities in Late Capitalism (2nd ed.). Great Britain: Routledge. Retrieved March 30, 2014, from

Selmys, M. (2012, March 12). Sexual Authenticity: Intimate Reflections on Homosexuality and Catholicism, Queer Theory. Retrieved March 20, 2014, from
Warner, M. (n.d.). Queer Theory. Retrieved March 25, 2014, from

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