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Research Paper Assignment: Representations of Sexuality

6 pages
1513 words
Wesleyan University
Type of paper: 
Research paper
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The society defines sexuality as the act of being male or female. It also expresses interest in the feelings, behavior, and attitudes that define one as either male or female. Therefore, tendencies like the emotional, physical, erotic, biological, and spiritual characteristics help define an individual and connect them to their sexuality (McClintock 76). However, defining sexuality of a person based on the biological differences might limit an individual from reaching their potential. This is because, irrespective of the biological structure that defines an individual as either male or female, the sexual orientation might be different. This is the attraction and interest a person develops towards people of the same or opposite sex. This helps demystify the aspect of representations of sexuality. A representation is a sample and must include the interests of the entire population so that it can provide the interests and characteristics of the people presented. Representations of sexuality differ based on cultural, religious, social, secular, and psychological perspectives (Shaw 67). Culturally and, sexuality is simply being a man or woman, and each has their specific roles in the society. These are the same sentiments shared by religious and social beliefs. According to Lumby (56), in the secular world, every individual has the power to choose which gender he or she feels comfortable with and has the option of going through a surgical process to fulfill his or her wishes. Psychologically, an individual makes the conscious decision on which gender they some people might feel trapped in the wrong body. Representation of sexuality is important to as it highlights the diverse types of sexual beings in society, their needs, and healthcare, welfare, and employment opportunities.

Primary Aims of Argument

To identify the various types of sexuality representations that exist in the society

To find out the challenges representations of sexuality goes through to get a recognition

To find out the solutions that will enable people to live in harmony irrespective of their sexuality

Sexuality Representations in the Society

The societal definition of sexuality borders on the emotional, attractions, and romantic feelings that an individual has towards the opposite, similar, neither, or both genders. It means that people are unique and diversified ion their sexuality as long as they feel comfortable with their identity (Moore, Allison, and Phil 199). It has necessitated the need to accommodate each other despite the differences that define and separate persons in the society. It is also important to reduce biasness and negative attitudes towards other people if their sexuality is different from what one believes to be the right thing. Some of the main sexual representations in the society include heterosexuals and homosexuals (Shaw 47). The former is where people are attracted to the opposite gender while the latter defines persons attracted to persons who come from their sex. On the other hand, bisexual people are attracted to both men and women and do not prefer either, they are comfortable dating either as long as they are happy.

According to McClintock (54), representations of all various types sexuality in the society means that people have diversified and are willing and able to accommodate each other despite the differences that exist among them. Interacting with people in the community is not defined by their sexual orientation as biological differences and preferences push people towards what defines their happiness. The ability of people to live to live and interact with each other on a personal and professional level indicates that sexuality is not a major consideration when defining grounds of how people should live. In addition, freedom of choice has encouraged the sexuality representations in the society to voice out their concerns and advocate for recognition as part of the larger society. Previously, most people in the society assumed that only heterosexual representations are the main and only valid manner of defining peoples sexuality (Daley, and Judith, MacDonnell 46). However, with changes in perceptions and evolvement of people into accommodating each other, there is a high level of tolerance amongst persons in the society.

Challenges Representations of Sexuality

Every sexual representation has faced challenges in the past even as people define and connect with their identity. Some of the major problems include stereotyping, assumptions, and poor judgment on all people (McClintock 78). Stereotyping has been the major issue affecting sexuality representations as people define the various categories that exist in the society differently. For instance, one of the main stereotypes is using religion to define heterosexual orientation as the only accepted form of sexuality representation (Shaw 24). It means that only people attracted to persons of different genders from them are doing the right thing and others have a problem that needs psychological intervention. Some of the assumptions made have led to contact mistrust and ill-treatment of people who do not share the same sexuality representations as another. Further, some people have gone through emotional, social, psychological, and financial challenges based on their sexuality (Moore, Allison, and Phil 200). In addition, discrimination is evident among many people in the society, as people want to instill judgment in others if they do not share their ideas or definitions of sexuality.

Another challenge has been the judgment people who occupy public seats for diverse sexuality representations (Daley, and Judith, MacDonnell 40). Some people assume that they condone wrong and immoral acts of sexuality. Since the current state of tolerance has not always been there in the world, there have been people who have fought and pushed towards respect and recognition of people with diverse sexual orientations to access services, amenities, and job placement, amongst others (McClintock 88). It has not been an easy journey to reach the levels of acceptance of people despite their sexuality. Activists have gone through public humiliation and psychological stress as they push towards recognition. However, their efforts have paid off since every individual has a responsibility of accepting others and according them respect irrespective of their sexual orientation. The idea is that every person has a right to access public services and get information as and when they need it irrespective of their sexuality. For instance, in the past, it was hard and sometimes impossible for homosexually oriented people to access healthcare facilities since they faced discrimination and judgment from practitioners (Lumby 64). It led to many people losing their lives while others contracted diseases that would have otherwise been preventable. In the modern day, such people can receive medical attention when they need it and have the freedom to create awareness among their social groups without facing opposition from other members of the society.


One of the major solutions that will enable people to live in harmony is recognizing that differences exist amongst people in one society (Shaw 45). Sexuality orientation does not define anyone; rather, their intellectual capabilities should be the main way which people should define them. There is the need for people to appreciate other persons, respect their feelings and choices, and refrain from subjecting them to humiliation based on their sexuality. No sexuality representation is superior to another as all persons enjoy the same fundamental human rights (Moore, Allison, and Phil 193). Therefore, anyone found discriminating and oppressing another individual based on their sexuality should face disciplinary cases from the court for objecting enjoyment of human rights. It will help send a positive image to other persons and help people live in harmony with each other.

There is also need to create awareness amongst people in society. Acknowledging and informing people from an early age on the different types of sexuality representations that exist in the society will help encourage people to identify their orientation from a young age, and instill a sense of belonging amongst people (McClintock 77). It will also reduce the discrimination, and hostile environment people with diverse sexuality orientation go through as they try to find identity in the society. Furthermore, there is need to encourage love amongst people so that they can appreciate other persons irrespective of their sexuality and understand that all people deserve the right treatment. It is also important to educate the public to understand that people with different sexuality perceptions from them do not suffer from a medical or psychological situation; rather, it is their unique identity and is normal (Lumby 56). In conclusion, representations of sexuality in the society have evolved. People are accommodating each other with ease irrespective of their orientation. This has created a safe environment for all people, irrespective of their sexuality, to live a meaningful life that derives them happiness.


Works Cited

Daley, Andrea E., and Judith A. MacDonnell. Gender, sexuality and the discursive representation of access and equity in health services literature: implications for LGBT communities. International journal for equity in health 10.1 (2011): 40.

Lumby, Catharine. Ambiguity, children, representation, and sexuality. CLCWeb: Comparative Literature and Culture 12.4 (2010): 52-66.

McClintock, Anne. Imperial Leather: Race, gender, and sexuality in the colonial contest. Routledge, (2013): 12-89.

Moore, Allison, and Phil Prescott. Absent but present: a critical analysis of the representation of sexuality in recent youth policy in the UK. Journal of youth studies 16.2 (2013): 191-205.

Shaw, Adrienne. Gaming at the edge: Sexuality and gender at the margins of gamer culture. Univ Of Minnesota Press, (2015): 23-68.


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