From Susan's Place Transgender Resources
Jump to: navigation, search

Homosexuality refers to sexual behavior with or attraction to people of the same sex, or to a homosexual orientation. As a sexual orientation, homosexuality refers to "having sexual and romantic attraction primarily or exclusively to members of one's own sex"; "it also refers to an individual's sense of personal and social identity based on those attractions, behaviors expressing them, and membership in a community of others who share them."[1][2] Homosexuality, bisexuality, and heterosexuality together make up the three main classifications of sexual orientation and are the factors in the Heterosexual-homosexual continuum. The exact proportion of the population that is homosexual is difficult to estimate reliably,[3] but most recent studies place it at 2.[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12]

Sexual orientation is also distinguished from other aspects of sexuality, "including biological sex (the anatomical, physiological, and genetic characteristics associated with being male or female), gender identity (the psychological sense of being male, female or other), and social gender role (adherence to cultural norms defining feminine and masculine behavior)."[2]

Etymologically, the word homosexual is a Greek and Latin hybrid with homos (sometimes confused with the later Latin meaning of "man", as in Homo sapiens) deriving from the Greek word for same, thus connoting sexual acts and affections between members of the same sex, including lesbianism.[13][14] The word gay generally refers to male homosexuality, but is sometimes used in a broader sense, especially in the media[citation needed], to refer to homosexuality in general. In the context of sexuality, the word lesbian always denotes female homosexuality.

There is much evidence of both acceptance and repression of homosexual behavior throughout recorded history. During the last several decades, there has been a trend towards increased visibility, recognition, and legal rights for homosexuals, including marriage and civil unions, parenting rights, and equal access to health care.


Homosexuality has been a feature of human culture since earliest history (see History section below). Generally and most famously in ancient Greece, certain forms of erotic attraction and sexual pleasure between males were often an ingrained, accepted part of the cultural norm. Particular sexual activities (such as anal sex in some cultures, or oral sex in others), however, were disapproved of, even as other aspects were accepted and admired. In cultures under the sway of Abrahamic religions, the law and the church established sodomy as a transgression against divine law, a "crime against nature" practiced by choice, and subject to severe penalties, up to capital punishment — often inflicted by means of fire so as to purify the unholy action. The condemnation of penetrative sex between males, however, predates Christian belief, as it was frequent in ancient Greece, whence the theme of action "against nature," traceable to Plato, originated.[15]

In the last two decades of the 19th Century, a different view began to predominate in medical and psychiatric circles, judging such behavior as indicative of a type of person with a defined and relatively stable sexual orientation. Karl-Maria Kertbeny coined the term homosexual in 1869 in a pamphlet arguing against a Prussian anti-sodomy law.[16][17] Richard von Krafft-Ebing's 1886 book Psychopathia Sexualis elaborated on the concept.

In 1897, British physician Havelock Ellis published similar views in his influential book Sexual Inversion.[18] Although medical texts like these (written partly in Latin to obscure the sexual details) were not widely read by the general public, they did lead to the rise of Magnus Hirschfeld's Scientific Humanitarian Committee, which campaigned from 1897 to 1933 against anti-sodomy laws in Germany, as well as a much more informal, unpublicized movement among British intellectuals and writers, led by such figures as Edward Carpenter and John Addington Symonds.

In the course of the 20th Century, homosexuality became a subject of considerable study and debate in Western societies, especially after the modern gay rights movement began in 1969. Once viewed by authorities as a pathology or mental illness to be cured, homosexuality is now more often investigated as part of a larger impetus to understand the biology, psychology, politics, genetics, history and cultural variations of sexual practice and identity. The legal and social status of people who engage in homosexual acts or identify as gay or lesbian varies enormously across the world, and in some places remains hotly contested in political and religious debate.

Etymology and usage

The adjective homosexual describes behavior, relationships, people, orientation etc. The adjectival form literally means "same sex", being a hybrid formed from the Greek prefix homo- ("same"), and the Latin root sex. Many modern style guides in the U.S. recommend against using homosexual as a noun, instead using gay man or lesbian.[19] Similarly, some recommend completely avoiding usage of homosexual as having a negative and discredited clinical history and because the word only refers to one's sexual behavior, and not to romantic feelings.[19] Gay and lesbian are the most common alternatives. The first letters are frequently combined to create the initialism LGBT (sometimes written as GLBT), in which B and T refer to bisexuals and transgender people. These style guides are not always followed by mainstream media sources.[20]

The first known appearance of homosexual in print is found in an 1869 German pamphlet by the Austrian-born novelist Karl-Maria Kertbeny, published anonymously.[21] The prevalence of the concept owes much to the work of the German psychiatrist Richard Freiherr von Krafft-Ebing and his 1886 work Psychopathia Sexualis.[22] As such, the current use of the term has its roots in the broader 19th century tradition of personality taxonomy. These continue to influence the development of the modern concept of sexual orientation, gaining associations with romantic love and identity in addition to its original, exclusively sexual meaning.

Although early writers also used the adjective homosexual to refer to any single-sex context (such as an all-girls' school), today the term is used exclusively in reference to sexual attraction and activity. The term homosocial is now used to describe single-sex contexts that are not specifically sexual. There is also a word referring to same-sex love, homophilia. Other terms include men who have sex with men or MSM (used in the medical community when specifically discussing sexual activity), homoerotic (referring to works of art), heteroflexible (referring to a person who identifies as heterosexual, but occasionally engages in same-sex sexual activities), and metrosexual (referring to a non-gay man with stereotypically gay tastes in food, fashion, and design). Pejorative terms in English include queer, faggot, fairy, poof, and homo. Beginning in the 1990s, some of these have been "reclaimed" as positive words by gay men and lesbians, as in the usage of queer studies, queer theory, and even the popular American television program Queer Eye for the Straight Guy. As with ethnic slurs and racial slurs, however, the misuse of these terms can still be highly offensive; the range of acceptable use depends on the context and speaker. Conversely, gay, a word originally embraced by homosexual men and women as a positive, affirmative term (as in gay liberation and gay rights), has come into widespread pejorative use among young people.


Homosexuality is a broad term which includes several aspects of same-sex sexuality, such as sexual orientation, sexual identity, and sexual behaviors.

Homosexual orientation

Homosexuality as a sexual orientation refers to "an enduring pattern of or disposition to experience sexual, affectionate, or romantic attractions primarily to" people of the same sex; "it also refers to an individual's sense of personal and social identity based on those attractions, behaviors expressing them, and membership in a community of others who share them."[1][2] The exact proportion of the population that is homosexual is difficult to estimate reliably,[3] but studies place it at 2,7.[4][5][6][7][8][9][10][11][12] It is distinguished from a bisexual or heterosexual orientation.

Researchers have looked into a variety of possible causes for a homosexual orientation, including biological influences, prenatal hormones, prenatal stress, fraternal birth order, and environmental influences.[23] The American Psychiatric Association has stated "some people believe that sexual orientation is innate and fixed; however, sexual orientation develops across a person's lifetime."[24] However, the American Psychological Association has stated "most people experience little or no sense of choice about their sexual orientation."[25]

Sexual identity

Homosexuality as a sexual identity refers to sexual identity as a gay or lesbian person. In a narrow sense, gay refers to male homosexuality, but it often is used in its broadest sense, especially in media headlines and reports, to refer to homosexuality in general. Lesbian, however, always denotes female homosexuality.

Sexual behavior

Homosexuality as a sexual behavior refers to sexual relationships between two people of the same-sex. Studies have found same-sex and opposite-sex couples to be equivalent to each other on measures of relationship satisfaction and commitment. Many lesbians and gay men form durable relationships. For example, survey data indicate that between 18% and 28% of gay couples and between 8% and 21% of lesbian couples in the U.S. have lived together 10 or more years.[26]

Societal attitudes towards same-sex relationships vary over time and place, from expecting all males to engage in same-sex relationships, to casual integration, through acceptance, to seeing the practice as a minor sin, repressing it through law enforcement and judicial mechanisms, and to proscribing it under penalty of death.

Most nations do not impede consensual sex between unrelated persons above the local age of consent. Some jurisdictions further recognize identical rights, protections, and privileges for the family structures of same-sex couples, including marriage. Some nations mandate that all individuals restrict themselves to heterosexual relationships; that is, in some jurisdictions homosexual activity is illegal. Offenders face up to the death penalty in some fundamentalist Muslim areas such as Iran and parts of Nigeria. There are, however, often significant differences between official policy and real-world enforcement. See Violence against gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and the transgendered.


The lives of many historical figures, including Socrates, Alexander the Great, Lord Byron, Edward II, Hadrian, Julius Caesar, Michelangelo, Donatello, Leonardo DaVinci, and Christopher Marlowe included or were centered upon love and sexual relationships with people of their own sex. Terms such as gay or bisexual have been often applied to them; some, such as Michel Foucault, regard this as risking the anachronistic introduction of a contemporary construction of sexuality foreign to their times,[27] though others challenge this.[28]

A common thread of constructionist argument is that no one in antiquity or the Middle Ages experienced homosexuality as an exclusive, permanent, or defining mode of sexuality. John Boswell has countered this argument by citing ancient Greek writings by Plato,[29] which describe individuals exhibiting exclusive homosexuality.


Though often ignored or suppressed by European explorers and colonialists, homosexual expression in native Africa was also present and took a variety of forms. Anthropologists Stephen Murray and Will Roscoe reported that women in Lesotho engaged in socially sanctioned "long term, erotic relationships," named motsoalle.[30] E. E. Evans-Pritchard also recorded that male Azande warriors (in the northern Congo) routinely took on boy-wives between the ages of twelve and twenty, who helped with household tasks and participated in intercrural sex with their older husbands. The practice had died out by the early 20th century, after Europeans had gained control of African countries, but was recounted to Evans-Pritchard by the elders he spoke to.[31]


Among indigenous peoples of the Americas prior to European colonization, the most common form of same-sex sexuality seems to center around the figure of the Two-spirit individual. Such people seem to have been recognized by the majority of tribes[citation needed], each of which had its particular term for the role. Typically the two-spirit individual was recognized early in life, was given a choice by the parents to follow the path, and if the child accepted the role then the child was raised in the appropriate manner, learning the customs of the gender it had chosen. Two-spirit individuals were commonly shamans and were revered as having powers beyond those of ordinary shamans. Their sexual life would be with the ordinary tribe members of the same sex. Male two-spirit people were prized as wives because of their greater strength and ability to work[citation needed].

s upon Indian practitioners of male love in 1513; New York Public Library]]

Homosexual and transgender individuals were also common among other pre-conquest civilizations in Latin America, such as the Aztecs, Mayans, Quechas, Moches, Zapotecs, and the Tupinambá of Brazil.[32] The Spanish conquerors were horrified to discover "sodomy" openly practiced among native peoples, and attempted to crush it out by subjecting the berdaches (as the Spanish called them) under their rule to severe penalties, including public execution and burning. In a famous example of cruelty against homosexuals, in 1513 the conquistador Vasco Núñez de Balboa
discovered that the village of Quarequa [in modern-day Panama] was stained by the foulest vice. The king’s brother and a number of other courtiers were dressed as women, and according to the accounts of the neighbours shared the same passion. Vasco ordered forty of them to be torn to pieces by dogs. The Spaniards commonly used their dogs in fighting against these naked people, and the dogs threw themselves upon them as though they were wild boars on timid deer.[33]

East Asia

In East Asia, same-sex love has been referred to since the earliest recorded history. Early European travelers were taken aback by its widespread acceptance and open display. None of the East Asian countries today have specific legal prohibitions against homosexuality or homosexual behavior.

Homosexuality in China, known as the pleasures of the bitten peach, the cut sleeve, or the southern custom, has been recorded since approximately 600 BCE. These euphemistic terms were used to describe behaviors, but not identities (recently some fashionable young Chinese tend to euphemistically use the term "brokeback," 斷背 duanbei to refer to male homosexuals, from the success of director Ang Lee's film Brokeback Mountain).[34] The relationships were marked by differences in age and social position. However, the instances of same-sex affection and sexual interactions described in the classical novel Dream of the Red Chamber seem as familiar to observers in the present as do equivalent stories of romances between heterosexuals during the same period.

This same-sex love culture gave rise to strong traditions of painting and literature documenting and celebrating such relationships.

Similarly, in Thailand, Kathoey, or "ladyboys," have been a feature of Thai society for many centuries, and Thai kings had male as well as female lovers. While Kathoey may encompass simple effeminacy or transvestism, it most commonly is treated in Thai culture as a third gender. They are generally accepted by society, and Thailand has never had legal prohibitions against homosexuality or homosexual behavior.


The earliest Western documents (in the form of literary works, art objects, as well as mythographic materials) concerning same-sex relationships are derived from ancient Greece. They depict a world in which relationships with women and relationships with youths were the essential foundation of a normal man's love life. Same-sex relationships were a social institution variously constructed over time and from one city to another. The formal practice, an erotic yet often restrained relationship between a free adult male and a free adolescent, was valued for its pedagogic benefits and as a means of population control, though occasionally blamed for causing disorder. Plato praised its benefits in his early writings,[35] but in his late works proposed its prohibition.[36]

In Ancient Rome the situation was reversed. Though the young male body remained a focus of male sexual attention, free boys were off limits as sexual partners. All the emperors with the exception of Claudius took male lovers. The Hellenophile emperor Hadrian is renowned for his relationship with Antinous, but the Christian emperor Theodosius I decreed a law on August 6, 390, condemning passive males to be burned at the stake. Justinian, towards the end of his reign, expanded the proscription to the active partner as well (in 558), warning that such conduct can lead to the destruction of cities through the "wrath of God". Notwithstanding these regulations, taxes on brothels of boys available for homosexual sex continued to be collected until the end of the reign of Anastasius I in 518.

During the Renaissance, rich cities in northern Italy, Florence and Venice in particular, were renowned for their widespread practice of same-sex love, engaged in by a considerable part of the male population and constructed along the classical pattern of Greece and Rome.[37][38] But even as many of the male population were engaging in same-sex relationships, the authorities, under the aegis of the Officers of the Night court, were prosecuting, fining, and imprisoning a good portion of that population. The eclipse of this period of relative artistic and erotic freedom was precipitated by the rise to power of the moralizing monk Girolamo Savonarola. In northern Europe the artistic discourse on sodomy was turned against its proponents by artists such as Rembrandt, who in his Rape of Ganymede no longer depicted Ganymede as a willing youth, but as a squalling baby attacked by a rapacious bird of prey.

The relationships of socially prominent figures, such as King James I and the Duke of Buckingham, served to highlight the issue, including in anonymously authored street pamphlets: "The world is chang'd I know not how, For men Kiss Men, not Women now;...Of J. the First and Buckingham: He, true it is, his Wives Embraces fled, To slabber his lov'd Ganimede;" (Mundus Foppensis, or The Fop Display'd, 1691.)

Love Letters Between a Certain Late Nobleman and the Famous Mr. Wilson was published in 1723 in England and was presumed to be a novel by some modern scholars. The 1749 edition of John Cleland's popular novel Fanny Hill includes a homosexual scene, but this was removed in its 1750 edition. Also in 1749, the earliest extended and serious defense of homosexuality in English, Ancient and Modern Pederasty Investigated and Exemplified, written by Thomas Cannon, was published, but was suppressed almost immediately. It includes the passage, "Unnatural Desire is a Contradiction in Terms; downright Nonsense. Desire is an amatory Impulse of the inmost human Parts."[39] Around 1785 Jeremy Bentham wrote another defense, but this was not published until 1978.[40] Executions for sodomy continued in the Netherlands until 1803, and in England until 1835.

Between 1864 and 1880 Karl Heinrich Ulrichs published a series of twelve tracts, which he collectively titled Research on the Riddle of Man-Manly Love. In 1867 he became the first self-proclaimed homosexual person to speak out publicly in defense of homosexuality when he pleaded at the Congress of German Jurists in Munich for a resolution urging the repeal of anti-homosexual laws.

Sir Richard Francis Burton's Terminal Essay, Part IV/D appendix in his translation of The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night (1885–86) provided an effusive overview of homosexuality in the Middle East and tropics. Sexual Inversion by Havelock Ellis, published in 1896, challenged theories that homosexuality was abnormal, as well as stereotypes, and insisted on the ubiquity of homosexuality and its association with intellectual and artistic achievement. Appendix A included A Problem in Greek Ethics by John Addington Symonds, which had been privately distributed in 1883. Beginning in 1894 with Homogenic Love, Socialist activist and poet Edward Carpenter wrote a string of pro-homosexual articles and pamphlets, and "came out" in 1916 in his book My Days and Dreams.

In 1900, Elisar von Kupffer published an anthology of homosexual literature from antiquity to his own time, Lieblingminne und Freundesliebe in der Weltliteratur. His aim was to broaden the public perspective of homosexuality beyond it being viewed simply as a medical or biological issue, but also as an ethical and cultural one.

Middle East, South and Central Asia

Among many Middle Eastern Muslim cultures egalitarian or age-structured homosexual practices were, and remain, widespread and thinly veiled. The prevailing pattern of same-sex relationships in the temperate and sub-tropical zone stretching from Northern India to the Western Sahara is one in which the relationships were—and are—either gender-structured or age-structured or both. In recent years, egalitarian relationships modeled on the western pattern have become more frequent, though they remain rare. Same-sex intercourse officially carries the death penalty in several Muslim nations: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Mauritania, northern Nigeria, Sudan, and Yemen. [41]

A tradition of art and literature sprang up constructing Middle Eastern homosexuality. Muslim—often Sufi—poets in medieval Arab lands and in Persia wrote odes to the beautiful wine boys who served them in the taverns. In many areas the practice survived into modern times, as documented by Richard Francis Burton, André Gide, and others.

In Persia homosexuality and homoerotic expressions were tolerated in numerous public places, from monasteries and seminaries to taverns, military camps, bathhouses, and coffee houses. In the early Safavid era (1501–1723), male houses of prostitution (amrad khane) were legally recognized and paid taxes. Persian poets, such as Sa’di (d. 1291), Hafez (d. 1389), and Jami (d. 1492), wrote poems replete with homoerotic allusions. The two most commonly documented forms were commercial sex with transgender young males or males enacting transgender roles exemplified by the köçeks and the bacchás, and Sufi spiritual practices in which the practitioner admired the form of a beautiful boy in order to enter ecstatic states and glimpse the beauty of god. Some crossed over from the idealized chaste form of the practice to one in which the desire is consummated[citation needed].

In the Turkic-speaking areas, one manifestation of this same-sex love was the bacchá, adolescent or adolescent-seeming male entertainers and sex workers[citation needed]. In other areas male love continues to surface despite efforts to keep it quiet[citation needed].

Today, governments in the Middle East often ignore, deny the existence of, or criminalize homosexuality. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, during his famous 2007 speech at Columbia University, asserted that there were no gay people in Iran. Gay people do live in Iran, but most keep their sexuality a secret for fear of government sanction or rejection by their families.[42]

South Pacific

In many societies of Melanesia, especially in Papua New Guinea, same-sex relationships were, until the middle of the last century, an integral part of the culture. The Etoro and Marind-anim for example, even viewed heterosexuality as sinful and celebrated homosexuality instead. In many traditional Melanesian cultures a pre-pubertal boy would be paired with an older adolescent who would become his mentor and who would "inseminate" him (orally, anally, or topically, depending on the tribe) over a number of years in order for the younger to also reach puberty. Many Melanesian societies, however, have become hostile towards same-sex relationships since the introduction of Christianity by European missionaries.[43]


Measuring the prevalence of homosexuality presents a number of difficulties:

  • Survey data regarding stigmatized or deeply personal feelings or activities are often inaccurate. Participants often avoid answers which they feel society, the survey-takers, or they themselves dislike.[citation needed]
  • The research must measure some characteristic that may or may not be defining of sexual orientation. The class of people with same-sex desires may be larger than the class of people who act on those desires, which in turn may be larger than the class of people who self-identify as gay/lesbian/bisexual.[44]
  • In studies measuring sexual activity, respondents may have different ideas about what constitutes a "sexual act."[citation needed]

Reliable data as to the size of the gay and lesbian population is of value in informing public policy.[44] For example, demographics would help in calculating the costs and benefits of domestic partnership benefits, of the impact of legalizing gay adoption, and of the impact of the U.S. military's Don't Ask Don't Tell policy.[44] Further, knowledge of the size of the "gay and lesbian population holds promise for helping social scientists understand a wide array of important questions—questions about the general nature of labor market choices, accumulation of human capital, specialization within households, discrimination, and decisions about geographic location."[44]

Estimates of the incidence of exclusive homosexuality range from >1% to 10% of the population, usually finding there are slightly more gay men than lesbians.[45][46][47]

Estimates also vary from one country to another. A 1992 study reported that 6.1% of males in Britain had a homosexual experience, while in France that number was 4.1%.[48]

Law, politics, and society


In many cultures, homosexual people are frequently subject to prejudice and discrimination. Like many other minority groups that are the objects of prejudice, they are also subject to stereotyping. Gay men are seen as effeminate and fashionable, often identified with a lisp or a female-like tone and lilt.[49][50][51] They are stereotyped as being promiscuous[citation needed] and unsuccessful in developing enduring romantic relationships[citation needed], despite research to the contrary.[52] Gay men are also often alleged as having pedophilic tendencies and more likely to commit child sexual abuse than the heterosexual male population, a view rejected by mainstream psychiatric groups and contradicted by research.[53][54][55] Claims that there is scientific evidence to support an association between being gay and being a pedophile are based on misuses of those terms and misrepresentation of the actual evidence.[56] Lesbians are seen as butch, and sometimes "man-haters"[57] or radical feminists.[58]

Homosexuality has at times been used as a scapegoat by governments facing problems. For example, during the early 14th century, accusations of homosexual behavior were instrumental in disbanding the Knights Templar under Philip IV of France, who profited greatly from confiscating the Templars' wealth. In the 20th century, Nazi Germany's persecution of homosexual people was based on the proposition that they posed a threat to "normal" masculinity as well as a risk of contamination to the "Aryan race".

In the 1950s, at the height of the Red Scare in the United States, hundreds of federal and state employees were fired because of their homosexuality in the so-called Lavender Scare. (Ironically, politicians opposed to the scare tactics of McCarthyism tried to discredit Senator Joseph McCarthy by hinting during a televised Congressional committee meeting that McCarthy's top aide, Roy Cohn, was homosexual, as he in fact was.)

A recent instance of scapegoating is the burning of 6,000 books of homoerotic poetry of 8th c. Persian-Arab poet Abu Nuwas by the Egyptian Ministry of Culture in January 2001, to placate Islamic fundamentalists.[59][60]

Violence against gay and lesbian people

In the United States, the FBI reported that 15.6% of hate crimes reported to police in 2004 were based on perceived sexual orientation. Sixty-one percent of these attacks were against gay men.[61] The 1998 murder of Matthew Shepard, a gay student, is one of the most notorious incidents in the U.S.

Homosexual acts are punishable by death in some present-day countries including Iran, Mauritania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.[62]


Although homosexual acts were decriminalized in some parts of the Western world, such as in Denmark in 1933, in Sweden in 1944, in the United Kingdom in 1967, and in Canada in 1969, it was not until the mid-1970s that the gay community first began to achieve actual, though limited, civil rights in some developed countries. A turning point was reached in 1973 when the American Psychiatric Association removed homosexuality from the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, thus negating its previous definition of homosexuality as a clinical mental disorder. In 1977, Quebec became the first state-level jurisdiction in the world to prohibit discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation.

Since the 1960s, in part due to their history of shared oppression, many LGBT people in the West, particularly those in major metropolitan areas, have developed a so-called gay culture. To many, gay culture is exemplified by the gay pride movement, with annual parades and displays of rainbow flags. Yet not all LGBT people choose to participate in "queer culture", and many gay men and women specifically decline to do so. To some it seems to be a frivolous display, perpetuating gay stereotypes. To some others, the gay culture represents heterophobia and is scorned as widening the gulf between gay and non-gay people.

With the outbreak of AIDS in the early 1980s, many LGBT groups and individuals organized campaigns to promote efforts in AIDS education, prevention, research, patient support, and community outreach, as well as to demand government support for these programs. Gay Men's Health Crisis, Project Inform, and ACT UP are some notable American examples of the LGBT community's response to the AIDS crisis.

The bewildering death toll wrought by the AIDS epidemic at first seemed to slow the progress of the gay rights movement, but in time it galvanized some parts of the LGBT community into community service and political action, and challenged the heterosexual community to respond compassionately. Major American motion pictures from this period that dramatized the response of individuals and communities to the AIDS crisis include An Early Frost (1985), Longtime Companion (1990), And the Band Played On (1993), Philadelphia (1993), and Common Threads: Stories from the Quilt (1989), the last referring to the NAMES Project AIDS Memorial Quilt, last displayed in its entirety on the Mall in Washington, D.C., in 1996.

During the 1980s and 1990s, most developed countries enacted laws decriminalizing homosexual behavior and prohibiting discrimination against lesbians and gays in employment, housing, and services. Yet as LGBT people slowly gained legal protection and social acceptance, gay bashing and hate crimes also increased due to heterosexism and homophobia (See Violence against gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and the transgendered).

Publicly gay politicians have attained numerous government posts, even in countries that had sodomy laws or outright mass murder of gays in their recent past.

Gay British politicians include former UK Cabinet ministers Chris Smith (now Lord Smith of Finsbury who is also a rare example of an openly HIV positive statesman) and Nick Brown, and, most famously, Peter Mandelson, a European Commissioner and close friend of Tony Blair. Openly gay Per-Kristian Foss was the Norwegian Minister of Finance until September 2005.

LGBT movements are opposed by a variety of individuals and organizations. Supporters of the traditional marriage movement believe that all sexual relationships with people other than an opposite-sex spouse undermines the traditional family[63] and that children should be reared in homes with both a father and a mother.[64][65]

There is also concern that gay rights may conflict with individual's freedom of speech,[66][67][68][69][70] religious freedoms in the workplace,[71][72] the ability to run churches,[73] charitable organizations[74][75] and other religious organizations[76] in accordance with one's religious views. There is also concern that the acceptance of homosexual relationships by religious organizations might be forced through threatening to remove the tax-exempt status of churches whose views don't align with those of the government.[77][78][79][80]

Critics charge that political correctness has led to the association of sex between males and HIV being downplayed.[81][82]

Coming out

Main article: Coming out

Many people who feel attracted to members of their own sex have a so-called "coming out" at some point in their lives. Generally, coming out is described in three phases. The first phase is the phase of "knowing oneself," and the realization or decision emerges that one is open to same-sex relations. This is often described as an internal coming out. The second phase involves one's decision to come out to others, e.g. family, friends, and/or colleagues. This occurs with many people as early as age 11, but others do not clarify their sexual orientation until age 40 or older. The third phase more generally involves living openly as an LGBT person.[83] In the United States today, people often come out during high school or college age. At this age, they may not trust or ask for help from others, especially when their orientation is not accepted in society. Sometimes their own parents are not even informed.

Outing is the practice of publicly revealing the sexual orientation of a closeted person.[84] Notable politicians, celebrities, military service people, and clergy members have been outed, with motives ranging from malice to political or moral beliefs. Many commentators oppose the practice altogether,[85] while some encourage outing public figures who use their positions of influence to harm other gay people.[86]


Many LGB people are parents through various means including adoption, donor insemination, foster parenting, surrogacy, from former relationships and together with an opposite sex spouse in a mixed-orientation marriage.[87][88][89][90] Some children do not know they have a LGB parent.[91][92]

In the 2000 U.S. Census, 33 percent of female same-sex couple households and 22 percent of male same-sex couple households reported at least one child under the age of 18 living in the home.[93] In January 2008, the European Court of Human Rights ruled that same-sex couples have the right to adopt a child.[94][95] In the U.S., LGB people can legally adopt in all states except for Florida.[96]

Same-sex parents are supported by the positions of a number of organizations, including the American Psychological Association, the Child Welfare League of America, the American Bar Association, the American Psychiatric Association, the National Association of Social Workers, the North American Council on Adoptable Children, the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Psychoanalytic Association, and the American Academy of Family Physicians.[97]

The American Psychological Association has stated that:

there is no scientific evidence that parenting effectiveness is related to parental sexual orientation: lesbian and gay parents are as likely as heterosexual parents to provide supportive and healthy environments for their children…research has shown that the adjustment, development, and psychological well-being of children is unrelated to parental sexual orientation and that the children of lesbian and gay parents are as likely as those of heterosexual parents to flourish….[93]

Children's Development of Social Competence Across Family Types, a major report prepared by the Department of Justice (Canada) in July 2006 but not released by the government until forced to do so by a request under the Access to Information Act in May 2007,[98] reaches this conclusion:

The strongest conclusion that can be drawn from the empirical literature is that the vast majority of studies show that children living with two mothers and children living with a mother and father have the same levels of social competence. A few studies suggest that children with two lesbian mothers may have marginally better social competence than children in traditional nuclear families, even fewer studies show the opposite, and most studies fail to find any differences. The very limited body of research on children with two gay fathers supports this same conclusion.[99]

Corporate attitudes

In some capitalist countries, large private sector firms often lead the way in the equal treatment of gay men and lesbians. For instance, more than half of the Fortune 500 offer domestic partnership benefits and 49 of the Fortune 50 companies include sexual orientation in their non-discrimination policies (only ExxonMobil does not).[100][101]

Mental health

Stigma, prejudice, and discrimination stemming from negative societal attitudes toward homosexuality leads to a higher prevalence of mental health disorders among lesbians, gay men, and bisexuals compared to their heterosexual peers.[102] However, evidence indicates that the liberalization of these attitudes over the past few decades is associated with a decrease in such mental health risks among younger LGBT people.[103]

Gay and lesbian youth

Gay and lesbian youth bear an increased risk of suicide, substance abuse, school problems, and isolation because of a "hostile and condemning environment, verbal and physical abuse, rejection and isolation from family and peers".[104]

LGB youths are more likely to report psychological and physical abuse by parents or caretakers, and more sexual abuse. Suggested reasons for this disparity are that (1) LGBT youths may be specifically targeted on the basis of their perceived sexual orientation or gender non-conforming appearance, and (2) "risk factors associated with sexual minority status, including discrimination, invisibility, and rejection by family members... may lead to an increase in behaviors that are associated with risk for victimization, such as substance abuse, sex with multiple partners, or running away from home as a teenager."[105]

Crisis centers in larger cities and information sites on the Internet have arisen to help youth and adults.[106] The Trevor Helpline, a suicide prevention helpline for gay youth, was established following the 1998 airing on HBO of the Academy Award winning short film Trevor.

Military service

Some ancient and pre-modern societies, such as Greece and Japan, fostered erotic love bonds between experienced warriors and their apprentices. It was believed that a man and youth who were in love with each other would fight harder and with greater morale. A classic example of a military force built upon this belief is the Sacred Band of Thebes.

The adoption of Christianity by the Roman Emperor Constantine in the fourth century and subsequent predominance of Christianity led to a diminished emphasis on erotic love among military forces. By the time of the Crusades, the military of Europe had largely switched gears, asserting that carnal relations between males were sinful and therefore had no place in an army that served their perception of God's will. The Knights Templar, a prominent military order, was destroyed by accusations (probably fabricated) of sodomy.

The United Kingdom, Canada, the Netherlands, and Israel admit openly gay service members, and others—like the United States, and many nations in South America and the Caribbean—either quiet or discharge anyone found to be engaging in homosexual relations or openly identifying as gay; the United States is known for its 1993 "don't ask, don't tell" policy. The traditional justification for excluding openly gay service members is that it may lead to "harassment, discord, blackmail, bullying or an erosion of unit cohesion or military effectiveness". The British military, which removed their restriction against gay service members in 2000, has not experienced any of these feared results.[107]


Religions have had differing views about love and sexual relations between people of the same sex. Presently, a large proportion of the Abrahamic sects view sexual relationships outside of a heterosexual marriage, including homosexual sex, negatively, though there are groups within each faith that disagree with orthodox positions and challenge their doctrinal authority.[citation needed] Opposition to homosexual behavior ranges from quietly discouraging displays and activities to those who explicitly forbid same-sex sexual practices among adherents and actively oppose social acceptance of homosexual relationships. Support of homosexual behavior is reflected in the acceptance of sexually heterodox individuals in all functions of the church, and sanctification of same-sex unions.[citation needed]

Some gay men, lesbians and bisexuals seek to diminish same-sex attractions, avoid same-sex relationships, or change sexual orientation. Some attempted methods include conversion therapy, religious practice, or attendance in ex-gay groups (such as Exodus International). Many Western health and mental health professional organizations believe sexual orientation develops across a person’s lifetime[24] and they respect a person’s right to self-determination.[108] However, neither the effectiveness nor the harm of conversion therapies have been rigorously and scientifically proven,[109] and many Western health and mental health professional organizations recommend that therapists refrain from attempts to change individuals' sexual orientation, given concerns of potential harm caused by such attempts.[110] The promotion of ex-gay groups and conversion therapy in schools has led to controversy, but has been allowed by American courts.[111] Recently, an effort of the Roman Catholic church to change the behavior of gay people to become celibate, has come under protest by groups opposed to the practice.[112]

Several churches teach love and compassion towards gay people, regardless of their sexual practices, while still teaching against homosexual relationships.[113] The Catechism of the Catholic Church states gay people "must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided."[114] The LDS Church denounced gay-bashing[115] and has officially stated that its members "reach out with understanding and respect".


Other churches have changed their doctrine to accommodate homosexual relationships. Reform Judaism, the largest branch of Judaism outside Israel, has begun to facilitate religious same-sex marriages for gay adherents in their synagogues. Jewish Theological Seminary, considered to be the flagship institution of Conservative Judaism, decided in March 2007 to begin accepting applicants in homosexual relationships, after scholars who guide the movement lifted the ban on ordaining people in homosexual relationships.[117] In 2005, the United Church of Christ became the largest Christian denomination in the United States to formally endorse same-sex marriage.[citation needed]

On the other hand, the Anglican Communion encountered discord that caused a rift between the African (except Southern Africa) and Asian Anglican churches on the one hand and North American churches on the other, when American and Canadian churches openly ordained gay clergy and began blessing same-sex unions. Other churches such as the Methodist Church had experienced trials of gay clergy who some claimed were a violation of religious principles resulting in mixed verdicts dependent on geography.[citation needed]

Some religious groups have even promoted boycotts of corporations whose policies support the LGBT community. In early 2005, the American Family Association threatened a boycott of Ford products to protest Ford's perceived support of "the homosexual agenda and homosexual marriage".[118]

Forms of relationships

People with a homosexual orientation can express their sexuality in a variety of ways, and may or may not express it in their behaviors.[119] Research indicates that many lesbians and gay men want and have committed relationships. For example, survey data indicate that between 40% and 60% of gay men and between 45% and 80% of lesbians are currently involved in a romantic relationship.[120] They can have sexual relationships predominately with people of their own gender, the opposite gender, both genders or they can be celibate.[119]

Same-sex relationships

Studies have found same-sex and opposite-sex couples to be equivalent to each other on measures of relationship satisfaction and commitment. Many lesbians and gay men form durable relationships. For example, survey data indicate that between 18% and 28% of gay couples and between 8% and 21% of lesbian couples in the U.S. have lived together 10 or more years.[120] The types of relationships vary by region and what is permitted by law.

Scholars who study the social construction of homosexuality investigate the various forms that same-sex relationships have taken in different societies, and look for patterns as well as differences. Their work suggests that the concept of homosexuality would best be rendered as "homosexualities". Anthropologists group these socio-historical variations into three separate categories:[121][122]

Association Annotations See also
Egalitarian Features two partners with no relevance to age. Additionally, both play the same socially accepted sex role as heterosexuals of their own sex. This is exemplified by relationships currently prevalent in Western society between partners of similar age and sex. Sexuality and gender identity-based cultures
Gender-structured Features each partner playing a different gender role. This is exemplified by traditional relations between men in the Mediterranean Basin, the Middle East and Central and South Asia, as well as Two-spirit or shamanic gender-changing practices seen in native societies. In North America, this is best represented by the butch–femme practice. Homosexuality and Islam, Two-spirit, and Hijra
Age-structured Features partners of different ages, usually one adolescent and the other adult. This is exemplified by pederasty among the Classical Greeks or those engaged in by novice samurai with more experienced warriors; southern Chinese boy marriage rites; and ongoing Central Asian and Middle Eastern practices. Shudo, Pederasty, Historical pederastic couples, and Homosexuality in China

Usually in any society one form of homosexuality predominates, though others are likely to co-exist. As historian Rictor Norton points out in his Intergenerational and Egalitarian Models, in ancient Greece egalitarian relationships co-existed (albeit less privileged) with the institution of pederasty, and fascination with adolescents can also be found in modern sexuality, both heterosexual and homosexual. Egalitarian homosexuality is the principal form present in the Western world, while age- and gender-structured homosexuality are less common. As a byproduct of growing Western cultural dominance, this egalitarian homosexuality is spreading from Western culture to non-Western societies, although there are still defined differences between the various cultures.

Opposite sex relationships

Many homosexual people have sexual relationships with someone of the opposite sex.[90][123] Reasons can include discrimination, wishful thinking, real affection, sexual love,[90] desire for family,[124] as well as religious reasons.[125][126] Many homosexual people and their opposite sex partner enter into a mixed-orientation marriage.[127][128] While many hide their orientation from their spouse,[129] others develop a positive homosexual identity while maintaining a successful marriage.[130][131]

Homosexual behavior in animals

Homosexual sexual behavior occurs in the animal kingdom, especially in social species, particularly in marine birds and mammals, monkeys, and the great apes. Homosexual behavior has been observed among 1,500 species, and in 500 of those it is well documented.[132][133]. This discovery constitutes a major argument against those calling into question the biological legitimacy or naturalness of homosexuality, or those regarding it as a meditated social decision. For example, male penguin couples have been documented to mate for life, build nests together, and to use a stone as a surrogate egg in nesting and brooding. In a well-publicized story from 2004, the Central Park Zoo in the United States replaced one male couple's stone with a fertile egg, which the couple then raised as their own offspring.[134]

The genetic basis of animal homosexuality has been studied in the fly Drosophila melanogaster.[135] Here, multiple genes have been identified that can cause homosexual courtship and mating.[136] These genes are thought to control behavior through pheromones as well as altering the structure of the animal's brains.[137][138] These studies have also investigated the influence of environment on the likelihood of flies displaying homosexual behavior.[139][140]

Georgetown University professor Janet Mann has specifically theorized that homosexual behavior, at least in dolphins, is an evolutionary advantage that minimizes intraspecies aggression, especially among males.[141] Studies indicating prenatal homosexuality in certain animal species have had social and political implications surrounding the gay rights debate.[142]

See also


  1. 1.0 1.1 American Psychological Association, Sexual Orientation and Homosexuality, Retrieved on 2007-09-07.
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 APA California Amicus Brief Please fix this cite and remove this comment when done.
  3. 3.0 3.1 LeVay, Simon (1996). Queer Science: The Use and Abuse of Research into Homosexuality. Cambridge: The MIT Press ISBN 0-262-12199-9
  4. 4.0 4.1 ACSF Investigators (1992). AIDS and sexual behaviour in France. Nature, 360, 407“409.
  5. 5.0 5.1 Billy, J. O. G., Tanfer, K., Grady, W. R., & Klepinger, D. H. (1993). The sexual behavior of men in the United States. Family Planning Perspectives, 25, 52,60.
  6. 6.0 6.1 Binson, D., Michaels, S., Stall, R., Coates, T. J., Gagnon, & Catania, J. A. (1995). Prevalence and social distribution of men who have sex with men: United States and its urban centers. Journal of Sex Research, 32, 245,254.
  7. 7.0 7.1 Bogaert, A. F. (2004). The prevalence of male homosexuality: The effect of fraternal birth order and variation in family size. Journal of Theoretical Biology, 230, 33,37.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Fay, R. E., Turner, C. F., Klassen, A. D., & Gagnon, J. H. (1989). Prevalence and patterns of same-gender sexual contact among men. Science, 243, 338,348.
  9. 9.0 9.1 Johnson, A. M., Wadsworth, J., Wellings, K., Bradshaw, S., & Field, J. (1992). Sexual lifestyles and HIV risk. Nature, 360, 410,“412.
  10. 10.0 10.1 Laumann, E. O., Gagnon, J. H., Michael, R. T., & Michaels, S. (1994). The social organization of sexuality: Sexual practices in the United States. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.
  11. 11.0 11.1 Sell, R. L., Wells, J. A., & Wypij, D. (1995). The prevalence of homosexual behavior in the United States, the United Kingdom and France: Results of national population-based samples. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 24, 235,248.
  12. 12.0 12.1 Wellings, K., Field, J., Johnson, A., & Wadsworth, J. (1994). Sexual behavior in Britain: The national survey of sexual attitudes and lifestyles. London, UK: Penguin Books.
  13. University of Waterloo, Etymology of Homosexuality, Retrieved on 2007-09-07.
  14. See Men who have sex with men and Women who have sex with women
  15. "... sow illegitimate and bastard seed in courtesans, or sterile seed in males in defiance of nature." Plato in THE LAWS (Book VIII p.841 edition of Stephanus) or p.340, edition of Penguin Books, 1972.
  16. Feray, Jean-Claude; Herzer, Manfred (1990). "Homosexual Studies and Politics in the 19th Century: Karl Maria Kertbeny". Journal of Homosexuality, Vol. 19, No. 1.
  17. "Biography: Karl Maria Kertbeny", GayHistory.com. Retrieved on 2007-09-07. 
  18. Ellis, Havelock, Symonds, John Addington (1975), Sexual Inversion, Arno Press, ISBN 0405073631 (reprint).
  19. 19.0 19.1 Media Reference Guide (citing AP, NY Times, Washington Post style guides), GLAAD. Retrieved 2007-05-10.
  20. See, for example, You calling me a poof? The Times; Scottish Hate Crime Laws extended to Homosexuals and Disabled The Herald, January 2008; and Council praised for 'gay' policy BBC news (see third paragraph)
  21. "Kertbeny Coins "Homosexual", GayHistory.com. Retrieved on 2007-09-07. 
  22. "Psychopathia Sexualis", Kino.com. Retrieved on 2007-09-07. 
  23. "Sexual Orientation and Adolescents", American Academy of Pediatrics Clinical Report. Retrieved on 2007-02-23. 
  24. 24.0 24.1 American Psychiatric Association (May 2000). Gay, Lesbian and Bisexual Issues. Association of Gay and Lesbian Psychiatrics.
  25. Answers to Your Questions About Sexual Orientation and Homosexuality. American Psychological Association. Retrieved on 2008-05-26.
  26. APA - What is Nature
  27. Foucault, Michel (1986). The History of Sexuality. Pantheon Books. ISBN 0394417755. 
  28. Thomas K. Hubbard, Review of David M. Halperin, How to Do the History of Homosexuality. in Bryn Mawr Classical Review 2003.09.22
  29. Boswell, John. "Christianity, Social Tolerance, and Homosexuality: Gay People in Western Europe from the Beginning of the Christian Era to the Fourteenth Century", University of Chicago Press, 1980. 
  30. Murray, Stephen (ed.); Roscoe, Will (ed.) (1998). Boy Wives and Female Husbands: Studies of African Homosexualities. New York: St. Martin's Press. ISBN 0312238290. 
  31. Evans-Pritchard, E. E. (December, 1970). Sexual Inversion among the Azande. American Anthropologist, New Series, 72(6), 1428-1434.
  32. Pablo, Ben. "Latin America: Colonial", glbtq.com, 2004. Retrieved on 2007-08-01. 
  33. Mártir de Anglería, Pedro. (1530). Décadas del Mundo Nuevo. Quoted by Coello de la Rosa, Alexandre. "Good Indians", "Bad Indians", "What Christians?": The Dark Side of the New World in Gonzalo Fernández de Oviedo y Valdés (1478-1557), Delaware Review of Latin American Studies, Vol. 3, No. 2, 2002.
  34. "Most frequently used new coinages in daily Chinese", Jongo News, August 20, 2007. Retrieved on 2007-09-07. 
  35. Plato, Phaedrus in the Symposium
  36. Plato, Laws, 636D & 835E
  37. Rocke, Michael, (1996), Forbidden Friendships: Homosexuality and male Culture in Renaissance Florence, ISBN 0-195122-92-5
  38. Ruggiero, Guido, (1985), The Boundaries of Eros, ISBN 0-195034-65-1
  39. Gladfelder, Hal (May 2006) In Search of Lost Texts: Thomas Cannon's 'Ancient and Modern Pederasty Investigated and Exemplified", Institute of Historical Research
  40. Journal of Homosexuality (ISSN 0091-8369) Volume: 3 Issue: 4 , Volume: 4 Issue: 1
  41. ILGA:7 countries still put people to death for same-sex acts
  42. Fathi, Nazila. "Despite Denials, Gays Insist They Exist, if Quietly, in Iran", New York Times, 2007-09-30. Retrieved on 2007-10-01. 
  43. Herdt, Gilbert H. (1984), Ritualized Homosexuality in Melanesia, University of California Press, p. 128-136, ISBN 0520080963
  44. 44.0 44.1 44.2 44.3 "Demographics of the Gay and Lesbian Population in the United States: Evidence from Available Systematic Data Sources", Dan Black, Gary Gates, Seth Sanders, Lowell Taylor, Demography, Vol. 37, No. 2 (May, 2000), pp. 139-154 (available on JSTOR).
  45. S. Hite, The Hite Report on Male Sexuality, New York, A. Knopf, 1991.
  46. S. S. et C. L. Janus, The Janus Report on Sexual Behavior, New York, John Wiley & Sons, 1993.
  47. Alfred C. Kinsey, Sexual Behavior in the Human Male, 1948, ISBN 0-7216-5445-2(o.p.), ISBN 0-253-33412-8(reprint).
  48. TERESA L. WAITE, December 8, 1992 "Sexual Behavior Levels Compared in Studies In Britain and France" in the New York Times[1]
  49. Mackenzie, Ian. "Dunk the faggot: A gay radio voice, back from hell", Xtra!, 2004-03-18. Retrieved on 2007-04-07. 
  50. Stuever, Hank. "Dishy Delight: Steven Cojocaru, a Glamour Boy in TV's Post-Gay Embrace", The Washington Post, 2003-04-19. 
  51. Marech, Rona. "Gay couples can be as stable as straights, evidence suggests", San Francisco Chronicle, 2004-02-27. Retrieved on 2007-04-07. 
  52. Jay, Karla; Young, Allen (1979). The gay report: Lesbians and gay men speak out about sexual experiences and lifestyles. New York: Summit. ISBN 0671400134. 
  53. Buchanan, Wyatt. "Foley incident stirs up a stereotype about gay men", 2006-10-07. Retrieved on 2007-04-07. 
  54. Marshall WL, Barbaree HE, Butt J (1988). "Sexual offenders against male children: sexual preferences". Behav Res Ther 26 (5): 383–91. doi:10.1016/0005-7967(88)90071-X. PMID 3190647.
  55. Freund et al. (1989). Heterosexuality, homosexuality, and erotic age preference. Journal of Sex Research, 26, 107-117.
  56. http://individual.utoronto.ca/james_cantor/index_files/blog1.htm
  57. Facts About Gay and Lesbian Victims. Crime Victim Services. Retrieved on 2007-04-07.
  58. Feminism? You want feminism?. FathersForLife.org. Retrieved on 2007-04-07.
  59. Al-Hayat, January 13, 2001
  60. Middle East Report, 219 Summer 2001
  61. "Crime in the United States 2004: Hate Crime", FBI. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  62. Ottosson, Daniel. "LGBT world legal wrap up survey", ILGA, November 2006. Retrieved on 2007-09-21. 
  63. First Presidency Message on Same-Gender Marriage
  64. Brownback, Sam (July 9, 2004). Defining Marriage Down - We need to protect marriage.. National Review.
  65. The Family: A Proclamation to the World
  66. Doughty, Steve. "Gay hate law 'threat to Christian free speech'", Daily Mail, November 28, 2007. 
  67. Doughty, Steve. "Christian faces court over 'offensive' gay festival leaflets", Daily Mail, September 6, 2006. 
  68. Gove, Michael. "I'd like to say this, but it might land me in prison", The Times, December 24, 2002. 
  69. "Christian group likens Tory candidate review to witch hunt", CBC News, November 28, 2007. 
  70. Kempling, Chris. "Conduct unbecoming a free society", National Post, April 9, 2008. 
  71. Moldover, Judith. "Employer's Dilemma: When Religious Expression and Gay Rights Cross", New York Law Journal, October 31, 2007. 
  72. Ritter, Bob. "Collision of religious and gay rights in the workplace", Humanist, January-February, 2008. 
  73. "Bishop loses gay employment case", BBC News, July 18, 2007. 
  74. Beckford, Martin. "Catholic adoption service stops over gay rights", Telegraph, June 5 ,2008. 
  75. LeBlanc, Steve. "Catholic Charities to halt adoptions over issue involving gays", Boston Globe, March 10, 2006. 
  76. Mercer, Greg. "Christian Horizons rebuked: Employer ordered to compensate fired gay worker, abolish code of conduct", The Record, April 24, 2008. 
  77. Gallagher, Maggie. "Banned in Boston:The coming conflict between same-sex marriage and religious liberty", 2006-05-15. 
  78. Capuzzo, Jill. "Church Group Complains of Civil Union Pressure", New York Times, August 14, 2007. 
  79. Capuzzo, Jill. "Group Loses Tax Break Over Gay Union Issue", New York Times. 
  80. Moore, Carrie. "LDS Church expresses disappointment in California gay marriage decision", Deseret News, May 15, 2008. 
  81. Chin, James. "The risks in hiding the HIV/AIDS truth", Business Day, March 12, 2007. 
  82. "The people punish Mr Blair", Daily Mail (UK), May 6, 2005. 
  83. "The Coming Out Continuum", Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  84. Neumann, Caryn E. "Outing", glbtq.com, 2004. 
  85. Maggio, Rosalie (1991), The Dictionary of Bias-Free Usage: A Guide to Nondiscriminatory Language, Oryx Press, p. 208, ISBN 0897746538
  86. Tatchell, Peter. "Outing hypocrites is justified", The New Statesman, 2007-04-23. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  87. Gay fathers in straight marriages
  88. Bozett, Frederick W.. "The Heterosexually Married Gay and Lesbian Parent", Gay and Lesbian Parents, 138. 
  89. The Married Lesbian
  90. 90.0 90.1 90.2 Butler, Katy. "Many Couples Must Negotiate Terms of 'Brokeback' Marriages", New York Times, March 7, 2006. 
  91. Helping gay fathers come out to their children
  92. A Family Matter: When a Spouse Comes Out as Gay, Lesbian, or Bisexual
  93. 93.0 93.1 APA Policy Statement on Sexual Orientation, Parents & Children, American Psychological Association, July 28 & 30, 2004. Retrieved on 2007-04-06.
  94. EMRK is for the LGBT adoption
  95. Euronews: Gleichgeschlechtliche Adoptiveltern - Gerichtshof rügt Frankreich (german)
  96. Adoption Laws: State by State. Human Rights Campaign. Retrieved on 2008-07-09.
  97. "Professional Organizations on GLBT Parenting", HRC.org. Retrieved on 2007-09-01. 
  98. Kevin, Bourassa; Joe Varnell. "Harper shoves family study into the closet", Equal Marriage for Same-sex Couples: Advocacy News, equalmarriage.ca, 2007-05-09. Retrieved on 2007-07-30. 
  99. "Children's Development of Social Competence Across Family Types", Department of Justice Canada, July 2006. 
  100. DeBare, Illana. "Gay, lesbian workers gradually gain benefits." San Francisco Chronicle. June 30, 2006. Accessed April 13, 2007.
  101. Joyce, Amy. "Workplace Improves for Gay, Transgender Employees, Rights Group Says", The Washington Post, 2006-06-06. Retrieved on 2007-09-21. 
  102. Meyer, Ilan H. (September 2003). "Prejudice, Social Stress, and Mental Health in Lesbian, Gay, and Bisexual Populations: Conceptual Issues and Research Evidence" 129: 674–697. Psychological Bulletin.
  103. Black gay men, lesbians, have fewer mental disorders than whites, says Mailman School of PH study
  104. Gibson, P. (1989), "Gay and Lesbian Youth Suicide", in Fenleib, Marcia R. (ed.), Report of the Secretary's Task Force on Youth Suicide, United States Government Printing Office, ISBN 0160025087
  105. Balsam, Kimberly F.; Esther D. Rothblum (June 2005). "Victimization Over the Life Span: A Comparison of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Heterosexual Siblings" (PDF) 73: 477–487. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology.
  106. Caruso, Kevin. "Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Suicide", Suicide.org. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  107. Lyall, Sarah. "Gay Britons Serve in Military With Little Fuss, as Predicted Discord Does Not Occur", The New York Times, 2007-05-21. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  108. What about therapy intended to change sexual orientation from gay to straight?. American Psychological Association (2008).
  109. Position Statement on Therapies Focused on Attempts to Change Sexual Orientation (Reparative or Conversion Therapies) (PDF). American Psychiatric Association (May 2000). Retrieved on 2007-08-28.
  110. American Psychiatric Association (2008). JUST THE FACTS ABOUT Sexual Orientation and Youth (PDF). The Just the Facts Coalition.
  111. "Flier About 'Ex-Gays' Ignites Firestorm At School", NBC, November 11, 2006. 
  112. Gays reject Catholic church's attempt to 'cure' them by Jeff Strickler, Minneapolis Star Tribune
  113. Lum, Rebecca Rosen. "Mormon church changes stance on homosexuality", Oakland Tribune, 2007-08-20. 
  114. Catechism of the Catholic Church, para. 2357 Catholic Church
  115. 1995 Dallin H. Oaks Statement, Official Site of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Retrieved on September 27, 2007.
  116. "First Presidency Statement on Same-Gender Marriage", LDS Church, October 20, 2004. Retrieved on 2007-08-01. 
  117. "Conservative Jewish Seminary To Allow Gays", CBS News. Retrieved on 2007-05-04. 
  118. "Family group to boycott Ford for its gay support.(American Family Association (AFA))(Brief Article)." PR Week (US) (June 6, 2005): 02. General Reference Center Gold. Thomson Gale. Newport News Public Library System. 7 Apr. 2007.
  119. 119.0 119.1 APA Help Center
  120. 120.0 120.1 What is Nature
  121. Murray, Stephen (2002). in Gilbert Herdt (ed.): Homosexualities, Worlds of Desire: The Chicago Series on Sexuality, Gender, and Culture. University of Chicago Press, p.2. ISBN 0226551946. 
  122. Sandfort (ed.), Theo, ed. (2000), "Queering Anthropology", Lesbian and Gay Studies: An Introductory, Interdisciplinary Approach, London/NY: Routledge, ISBN 076195418X
  123. Hentges, Rochelle. "How to tell if your husband is gay", Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, October 4, 2006. 
  124. Gay Men from Heterosexual Marriages: Attitudes, Behaviors, Childhood Experiences, and Reasons for Marriage
  125. Gay, Mormon, married
  126. Gay No More
  127. Gay Fathers in a Straight Marriage
  128. The Married Lesbian
  129. Heterosexual women's perceptions of their marriages to bisexual or homosexual men.
  130. Bisexual and gay men in heterosexual marriage: conflicts and resolutions in therapy.
  131. Bisexual men in marriage: is a positive homosexual identity and stable marriage possible?
  132. Oslo gay animal show draws crowds, BBC News, 2006-10-19. Retrieved 2006-10-19
  133. The Gay Animal Kingdom
  134. Smith, Datitia. (2004-02-07). "Central Park Zoo's gay penguins ignite debate". San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved on 2007-09-08.
  135. Yamamoto D, Nakano Y (1999). "Sexual behavior mutants revisited: molecular and cellular basis of Drosophila mating". Cell. Mol. Life Sci. 56 (7-8): 634–46. doi:10.1007/s000180050458. PMID 11212311.
  136. Yamamoto D, Ito H, Fujitani K (1996). "Genetic dissection of sexual orientation: behavioral, cellular, and molecular approaches in Drosophila melanogaster". Neurosci. Res. 26 (2): 95–107. doi:10.1016/S0168-0102(96)01087-5. PMID 8953572.
  137. Ferveur JF, Savarit F, O'Kane CJ, Sureau G, Greenspan RJ, Jallon JM (1997). "Genetic feminization of pheromones and its behavioral consequences in Drosophila males". Science 276 (5318): 1555–8. doi:10.1126/science.276.5318.1555. PMID 9171057.
  138. Yamamoto D, Fujitani K, Usui K, Ito H, Nakano Y (1998). "From behavior to development: genes for sexual behavior define the neuronal sexual switch in Drosophila". Mech. Dev. 73 (2): 135–46. doi:10.1016/S0925-4773(98)00042-2. PMID 9622612.
  139. Zhang SD, Odenwald WF (1995). "Misexpression of the white (w) gene triggers male-male courtship in Drosophila". Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci. U.S.A. 92 (12): 5525–9. doi:10.1073/pnas.92.12.5525. PMID 7777542.
  140. Svetec N, Ferveur JF (2005). "Social experience and pheromonal perception can change male-male interactions in Drosophila melanogaster". J. Exp. Biol. 208 (Pt 5): 891–8. doi:10.1242/jeb.01454. PMID 15755887.
  141. Mann, J. "Establishing Trust: Sociosexual behaviour and the development of male-male bonds among Indian Ocean bottlenose dolphin calves." Homosexual Behaviour in Animals: An Evolutionary Perspective. Ed. P. Vasey and V. Sommer. : Cambridge University Press, 2006.
  142. Doughton, Sandi. "Born gay? How biology may drive orientation", Seattle Times, 2005-06-19. Retrieved on 2007-09-08. 



  • Kenneth J. Dover, Greek Homosexuality, , Gerald Duckworth & Co. Ltd. 1979, ISBN 0-674-36261-6 (hardcover), ISBN 0-674-36270-5 (paperback)
  • John d'Emilio, Sexual Politics, Sexual Communities: The Making of a Homosexual Minority in the United States, 1940-1970, University of Chicago Press 1983, ISBN 0226142655
  • Norman Roth. The care and feeding of gazelles - Medieval Arabic and Hebrew love poetry. IN: Lazar & Lacy. Poetics of Love in the Middle Ages, George Mason University Press 1989, ISBN 0913969257
  • Allan Bérubé, Coming out under Fire: The History of Gay Men and Women in World War Two, New York: MacMillan 1990, ISBN 0029031001
  • Bret Hinsch, Passions of the Cut Sleeve: The Male Homosexual Tradition in China, The University of California Press, 1990, ISBN 0-520-06720-7
  • Dynes, Wayne R. (ed.) The Encyclopedia of Homosexuality New York and London, Garland Publishing 1990, ISBN 0824065441
  • Foucault, Michel, The History of Sexuality vol. 1: An Introduction, p.43. Trans. Robert Hurley. New York: Vintage 1990
  • George Rousseau, Perilous Enlightenment: Pre- and Post-Modern Discourses--Sexual, Historical, Manchester University Press 1991, ISBN 0719033012
  • Lillian Faderman, Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers: A History of Lesbian Life in Twentieth Century America, Penguin 1992
  • Arno Schmitt & Jehoeda Sofer (eds). Sexuality and Eroticism Among Males in Moslem Societies. Haworth Press, 1992
  • George Chauncey, Gay New York: Gender Urban Culture and the Making of the Gay Male World, New York: Basic Books, 1994
  • Juanita Ramos , Compañeras: Latina Lesbians : An Anthology, Routledge 1994
  • Johansson, Warren and Percy, William A., (1994), Outing: Shattering the Conspiracy of Silence, Harrington Park Press
  • Robert T. Michael, John H. Gagnon, Edward O. Laumann, and Gina Kolata. Sex in America: A definitive survey. Boston: Little, Brown, 1995. ISBN 0-316-07524-8
  • Percy, William A Pederasty and Pedagogy in Archaic Greece. University of Illinois Press, 1996
  • Lester G. Brown, Two Spirit People, 1997, Harrington Park Press, ISBN 1-56023-089-4
  • Bullough et al. (eds.) (1996). Handbook of Medieval Sexuality. Garland Publishing. ISBN 0-8153-1287-3.
  • Jennifer Terry, An American Obsession: Science, Medicine, and Homosexuality in Modern Society, University of Chicago Press 1999, ISBN 0-226-79367-2
  • Bullough, Vern L. Before Stonewall: Activists for Gay and Lesbian Rights in Historical Context, Harrington Park Press 2002
  • Ruth Vanita, Queering India: Same-Sex Love and Eroticism in Indian Culture and Society, Routledge 2002
  • Joanne Meyers, Historical Dictionary of the Lesbian Liberation Movement: Still the Rage, Scarecrow Press 2003
  • David K. Johnson, The Lavender Scare: The Cold War Persecution of Gays and Lesbians in the Federal Government, Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2004

Journal articles

  • Bowman, Karl M.; Eagle, Bernice The Problem of Homosexuality, Journal of Social Hygiene 1953
  • Norton, Rictor and Crew, Louis The Homophobic Imagination, College English 1974
  • Simon LeVay, A difference in hypothalamic structure between homosexual and heterosexual men, Science Magazine 1991
  • Christopher Bagley and Pierre Tremblay, On the Prevalence of Homosexuality and Bisexuality, in a Random Community Survey of 750 Men Aged 18 to 27, Journal of Homosexuality, Volume 36, Number 2, pages 1-18, 1998

Online articles

External links


*Some information provided in whole or in part by http://en.wikipedia.org/