Discussion of Sexuality

Table of Content

This week’s readings had the themes of sexuality and racial discrimination. These themes are displayed in “The Story of Sexuality” by Michel Foucault and “Abbreviation in Black” by Roderick Ferguson. Foucault brings up the discussion of sexuality and its contemplation in the west since the seventeenth century. Confessions of sex in the eighteenth century became authoritarian to the point where talking about sex became strictly defined. Foucault believes our opinion have been highly impacted by the “repressive hypothesis” but he discourses this hypothesis and argues that sexuality has become part of our identity and is a normal part of an individual’s lifestyle. Foucault disagreed that sexual activities had been repressed and instead believes that conversations about sex acts has been rapidly increased.

The ‘Repression Hypothesis’ is another was saying the way we view the history of sexuality. This theory argues after that the rise of middle class in the 18th century, the sexual activities decreased and became private secret activities. Foucault argues against this theory and brings up the point on the topic of sexuality to be more open and talk freely about it. Foucault specifically says that sexuality isn’t something that can be controlled; in fact, it is a part of every human’s life. Foucault also brings up the threat of death which he believes is no longer necessary to lead and control. In the article “Abbreviation in Black” Ferguson provides deeper analysis into queer theory, Marxism, feminist theory, and African American criticism.

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In Ferguson’s writing, he highlights the social heterogeneity that characterizes African-American culture and all the theory he discusses intersect as a whole. Ferguson mainly hits the subtopics of intersectionality and uses the subjects of prostitutes and drag queens to discourses on nationality, and class. In Ferguson’s sociological article, he demonstrates American culture as a way to reflect on the struggle of sexual diversity in their culture. For example, the article discussed how African American homosexuals get discriminated on daily bases and live in danger day and night. The concept of diversity is all about acceptance and respect. We all need to understand that each and every person in this world is unique including different races, gender, economic status, religious beliefs etc. We all need to learn about these differences in a positive manner and treat each other with respect. In his writing, he places both race and sexuality at the center of his analysis and responds to the development of racial knowledge about gender minorities in the United States.

Ferguson writes this story by bringing up other stories including revolutionary nationalism and novels about sexual characteristics of African American culture. Both stories intersect and have similar themes as Foucault develops on the idea on why freely talking about sex education is significant whereas in Ferguson he analyze the queer theory and criticism that takes place the African Americans. Again, society view sexuality as their identities because it is what socially regulated by the society and we believe we have to follow the crowd in order to fit in. The way the sexuality was described then is how it’s viewed today. Sometimes we don’t desire to follow the society conform. What we think of our sexuality and how it has shaped our identities has been produced through discourse. For example, over the past few years gay marriage has been legalized in some parts of the world but not everywhere which shows that the discourses of sexuality is not fully accepted in many places and that would of been different if there wasn’t so many restrictions on homosexual in the past.

Back to Foucault article where he questions ‘repressive hypothesis’ and states that we believes that we think repression of sexuality is part of our identities. He highlights “the Counter-Reformation, during which he argues the Catholic Church emphasized the need to attend confession more often.” Foucault try bringing the change in the history so the people can be open and not be controlled by the social norms which were happening in the society. He claims no one is born as a female or male when they come to this world. Instead, we are born as a obedient body that accept gender characteristics given by society. Time has changed, these days anyone is able to view sexual content on cell phones or magazines and that is what changed how we view sexuality today compared to the past.

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Discussion of Sexuality. (2022, Jun 11). Retrieved from


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