Variation in Human Sexuality – Exam 1 – Flashcards

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Abstinence
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A self-enforced restraint from indulging in bodily activities that are widely experienced as giving pleasure Ex: showing restraint towards sex, drugs, smoking, eating, etc.
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Alloparenting
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The act of an individual or individuals, other than the biological parent(s) of an offspring, performing functions of a parent. - Basically it's when an animal or person acts like a parent towards offspring(s) that aren't theirs.
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Asceticism
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Severe self-discipline and avoidance of all forms of indulgence, typically for religious reasons (aka a lifestyle characterized by abstinence from worldly pleasures)
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Bisexuality
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Romantic attraction, sexual attraction, or sexual behavior towards both men and women
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Bonobo & Chimpanzee
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Refer to PDF: "Bonobo Sex and Society" - DeWaal, F.
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Celibacy
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The state of abstaining from marriage and sexual relations (often times related to religion/religious practice)
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Coitus & Coital
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Sexual intercourse - the coming together of male and female sex organs, sometimes in the act of sexual procreation (aka vaginal sex)
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Concubine
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A mistress - a woman in an interpersonal and sexual relationship with a man - they are not or cannot be married (non- marital partnership.
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Copulation
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The act of coupling or joining; union - sexual intercourse
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* Charles Darwin
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A naturalist that developed a theory of evolution to explain biological change - best known for his contributions to the science of evolution. - He established that all species of life have descended overtime from common ancestors. He and Alfred Russel Wallace introduced the process that is "natural selection" - The differential survival and reproduction of individuals due to differences in phenotype (Darwin compared it to artificial selection)
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Dual Inheritance Theory
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Aka "gene-culture coevolution" or "biocultural evolution" (explains how human behavior is a product of two different and interacting evolutionary process: genetic evolution and cultural evolution (genes and culture can influence one another))
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Evolutionary Biology
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A subfield of biology that studies the evolutionary processes that produced the diversity of life on Earth, starting from a single common ancestor. (evolutionary processes such as: natural selection, common descent, and speciation)
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Evolutionary Psychology
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A theoretical approach in the social and natural sciences that examines psychological structure from a modern evolutionary perspective. It seeks to identify which human psychological traits are evolved adaptations - that is, the functional products of natural selection or sexual selection in human evolution.
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Exhibitionism
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The act of exposing, in a public or semi-public context, those parts of one's body that are normally not exposed. (ex: breasts, genitals, ass) - Derived from a desire/compulsion to expose one's self for amusement, sexual satisfaction, or to shock people.
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Fecundity/Fertility
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- Fecundity (the potential for reproduction) - the actual reproductive rate of an organism or population, measured by the number of gametes (eggs), seed set, or asexual propagules. - Fertility is the natural capability to produce offspring
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Foraging
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The act of searching for wild food resources. It plays an important role in an animals ability to survive and reproduce.
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Fornication
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Sexual intercourse - especially on the part of an unmarried person
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* Marvin Harris
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An American anthropologist known for his work on cultural materialism. He saw functionalism in the social sciences as being similar to "adaptation" in biology. Cultural materialism is a scientific research strategy and as such utilizes the scientific method. - Suggests that patterns of cultural behavior developed based on essential needs.
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* Thomas Hobbes
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An English philosopher, scientist, an historian, best known for his political philosophy - Leviation (1651). He viewed government primarily as a device for ensuring collective security.
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Hunter-Gatherer
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A member of a nomadic people who live chiefly by hunting, fishing, and harvesting wild food. - A human living in a society in which most or all food is obtained by foraging
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Hypergamy
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The act or practice of a person marrying another of higher caste social status than themselves
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Kama Sutra
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An ancient Indian Hindu text written by Vatsyayana. It is widely considered to be the standard work on human sexual behavior in sanskrit literature. It consists of practical advice on sexual intercourse. It's not just about sex, it's also about the nature of love, family life, and other aspects pertaining to pleasure
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Lascivious
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(of a person, manner, or gesture) feeling or revealing an overt and often offensive sexual desire - sexual behavior that is considered crude or offensive
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Libertine
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One devoid of most moral or sexual restraints, which are seen as unnecessary or undesirable, especially one who ignores or even spurns accepted morals and forms of behavior sanctified by the larger society. - A person, especially a man, who behaves without moral principles or a sense of responsibility, especially in sexual matters
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* Thomas Malthus
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An English economist and demographer who is best known for his theory that population growth will always tend to outrun the food supply and that betterment of humankind is impossible without stern limits or reproduction. - Malthusianism - Malthus argued that infinite human hopes for social happiness must be vain, for population will always tend to outrun the growth of production
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Masturbation
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Stimulation of the genitals with the hand for sexual pleasure (may involve hands, fingers, everyday objects, sex toys, or a combination of these)
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Matriarchy
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A social system in which females (most notably in mammals) hold the primary power positions in roles of political leadership, moral authority, social privilege, and control of property at the specific exclusion of men - at least to a large degree
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Matrilineality
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The tracing of descent through the female line - A matriline is a line pf descent from a female ancestor to a descendant (of either sex) in which the individuals in all intervening generations are mothers - "a mother line"
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Matrilocality
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The societal system in which a married couple resides with or near the wife's parents. Thus forming large clan families - typically consisting of 3 or 4 generations living in the same places. Husband and wife are living apart in their separate families, seeing each other in their spare time
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Miscegenation
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The mixing of different racial groups through marriage, cohabitation, sexual relations, or procreation. (Interracial, interethnic, cross-cultural)
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Morbidity
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The condition of being diseased - a diseased state, disability, or poor health due to any cause
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* Lewis Henry Morgan
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An American anthropologist and social theorist who worked as a railroad lawyer. - Best known for his work on kinship and social structure, his theories of social evolution, and his ethnography of the Iroquois. - He proposed the concept that the earliest human domestic institution was the matrilineal clan, not the patriarchal family
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Monogamy
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A form of relationship in which an individual has only one partner during their lifetime or at anyone time
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Multilineal & Unilineal Evolution
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Multilineal - evolution that sees culture evolving in its own way by adaptation to diverse environments Unilineal - evolution that is a social theory that is composed of many competing theories by anthropologists and sociologists, who believed that Western culture is the contemporary pinnacle of social evolution. - Different social status is aligned in a single line that moves from most primitive - most civilized
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Natural Selection & Sexual Selection
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Natural Selection - the mechanism that causes species to evolve - the differential survival and reproduction of individuals due to differences in phenotype - the change in heritable traits of a population overtime. Sexual Selection - natural selection arising through preference by one sex for certain characteristics in individuals of the other sex. Darwin viewed females as shopping around for males with desirable genes - Roughgarden argues that female choice is more for the best match than for the best male.
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Patriarchy
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A social system in which males hold primary power and predominate in roles of political leadership, moral authority, social privilege, and control of property - fathers or father figures hold authority over women and children
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Patrician
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A person of noble or high rank; aristocrat
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Patrilineality
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aka the "male line" - a common kinship system in which an individual's family membership derives from and is recorded through his or her father's lineage - ancestors traced only through males
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Patrilocality
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A social system in which a married couple resides with or near the husband's parents - where a man marries, his wife joins him in his father's home or compound where they raise their children - sons will stay, daughters leave to live with their husbands' families
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Pederasty
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A (usually erotic) homosexual relationship between an adult male and a pubescent or adolescent male - the legal status of it in most countries is determined by whether or not the boy has reached the local age of consent
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Plebeian
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(in ancient Rome) A commoner - a member of the lower social classes
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Polyamory
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The practice of or desire for intimate relationships with more than one partner, with the knowledge of all partners
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Polyandry
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A form of polygamy in which a woman takes two or more husbands at the same time - believed to be more likely in societies with scarce environmental resources
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Polygamy
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The practice of marrying multiple spouses
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Polygyny
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The marriage of a man with several women - the most common and accepted form of polygamy - most countries that permit polygamy are muslim-majority countries in which is the only form permitted
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Prehistory
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A period of human activity between the use of the first stone tools c. 3.3 million years ago and the invention of writing systems, the earliest of which appeared c. 5,300 years ago
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Procreation
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The biological process by which new individual organisms - "offspring" - are produced from their "parents" - to produce young/offspring
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Promiscuity
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The practice of having casual sex frequently with different partners or being indiscriminate in the choice of sexual partners - "one night stand"
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Prurient
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Having or encouraging an excessive interest in sexual matters - marked by or arousing an immoderate or unwholsome interest or desire
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Reciprocal Altruism
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A behavior whereby an organism acts in a manner that temporarily reduces it's fitness while increasing another organism's fitness, with the expectation that the other organism will act in a similar manner at a later time - takes place primarily between animals who have lived together and gotten to know one another. Each helps the other at various times, and each instance of helping benefits the recipient much more than it costs the donor.
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Red Queen's Hypothesis
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An evolutionary hypothesis which proposes that organisms must constantly adapt, evolve, and proliferate not merely to gain reproductive advantage, but also simply to survive while pitted against ever-evolving opposing organisms in an ever-changing environment - intends to explain the constant extinction rates as observed in the paleontological record causes by co-evolution between competing species and the advantage of sexual reproduction at the level of individuals
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Rhythm Method of birth control / Calendar based contraceptive methods
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This is where your previous menstrual cycles are tracked on a calendar and this information is used to predict future ovulation dates - you abstain from sex (periodic abstinence) during your most fertile days - In the first half of the 20th century, most users of the rhythm method were catholic; they were following their church's teaching that all other methods of birth control were sinful
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Selfish Gene Theory
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It holds that adaptive evolution occurs through the differential survival of competing genes increasing the allele frequency of those alleles whose phenotypic traits effects successfully promote their own propagation, with gene defined as "not just one single physical bit of DNA [but] all replicas of a particular bit of DNA distributed throughout the world" - It states that those alleles whose phenotypic effects successfully promote their propagation will be favorably selected relative to their competitor within the population.
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Social Inclusionary Traits
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Traits that qualify them for inclusion in groups that control resources for reproduction and safe places to live and raise offspring. These traits are either possessed only by females and unexplained by any theory or possessed only by males and interpreted as a secondary sex characteristic even though they are not actually preferred by females during courtship (ex: masculinized genitals (penis) of female spotted hyenas)
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Sociobiology
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A field of biology that attempts to examine and explain social behavior in terms of evolution - it argues that just as selection pressure led to animals evolving useful ways of interacting with the natural environment, it also led to the genetic evolution of advantageous social behavior - based on the premise that some behaviors (social and individual) are at least partly inherited and can be affected by natural selection.
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Sodomy
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Generally anal or oral sex between people or sexual activity between a person and a non-human animal (bestiality), but it may also mean any non-procreative sexual activity
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Stigma
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A mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance, quality, or person - a set of negative and often unfair beliefs that a society or group of people have about something
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Stoicism
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Predominantly a philosophy of personal ethics which is informed by it's system of logic and it's views on the natural world. According to it's teachings, as social beings, the path to happiness for humans is found in accepting this moment as it presents itself, by not allowing ourselves to be controlled by our desire for pleasure or our fear of pain, by using our minds to understand the world around us and to do our part in nature's plan, and by working together and treating others in a fair and just manner - the endurance of pain and hardship without a display of feeling and without complaint
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* Mary Wollstonecraft
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An English writer and passionate advocate of educational and social equality for women - advocate of women's rights - "A Vindication of the Rights of Women" - she argues that women are not naturally inferior to men, but appear to be only because they lack education. She suggests that both men and women should be treated as rational beings and imagines a social order founded on reason - She is regarded as one of the founding feminist philosophers
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