I thought that it was really interesting reading about the different ways in which societies saw sexuality throughout history. I had always assumed that it was male and female, which is what our culture and society teaches us to do. However, Fausto-Sterling tells us that we should question this norm. She believes that sexuality is a social construction that it has to do with things like politics and even capitalism. It's all about the norms created by societal pressures. In the Legacies class I'm taking now, we were reading Plato's Symposium. In his story, Plato often notes older men's relationship with young boys. This is noted as just one of the cultural norms which was considered common practice in ancient Greece. However, in our culture today, this would be considered illegal. The person would be shunned from society for being a pedophile.
The Sexe Which Prevaileth:
I was really shocked by the frequency, that Fausto-Sterling implies, of hermaphrodite births. I always assumed it was a really rare occurrence and hadn't even considered what people would have done before there were surgical correction techniques. This new evidence definitely makes me question our system of only two sexes. If this is a naturally occurring phenomenon it just doesn't make sense. I also liked how Fausto-Sterling connected the idea of hermaphrodites as being different to the constant search for difference that was going on in society as relating to race and religion as well. I think this parallels our discussions in class about how to go about equalizing men and women if they are, possibly, inherently different.