Homosexuality Throughout History Essay

2406 words - 10 pages

Homosexuality can be tracked throughout history. In ancient Rome, philosophers, such as Socrates, were having sexual relations with their students. They believed it was a part of becoming a man. The Bible, one of the oldest books in literature, discusses homosexual practices among the citizens of Sodom and Gomorrah. Some of the most influential people throughout history were discovered to be homosexual: Susan B. Anthony, William Shakespeare, Leonardo Da Vinci, and Tennessee Williams. Homosexuality is worldwide and has a global impact on society; it transcends borders, cultures, and governments. The homosexual society even bears its own international flag, a rainbow which signifies the bond ...view middle of the document...

The research was conducted before the start of the Gay Rights movement which has contributed to changes in data. In 1983, after the start of the Gay Rights movement, a study of 147 homosexuals was taken where 35% of the tested said that their sexual orientation was hereditary (Cameron 2). The inconsistency of data is predictable due to the change in thinking because of the Gay Rights movement. The answers from volunteers became more about the political struggle than the need for accurate scientific data. Although the elementary research did not prove that environmental situations are an underlying factor in determining sexual orientation, it did open a path for future research.

Clearly, research over sexual orientation has been fueled by the desire for answers to complex questions. Researchers have tried to determine any physical factors that may alter sexual preference. Past research was inconclusive and unsupported mainly because of elementary equipment. As technology has advanced, so has the research. Between 1983 and 1991, postmortem brains were taken from three hospitals in Southern California. A certain region of the brain known as the AC (anterior commissure) was evaluated and 34 homosexual men, 75 heterosexual men, and 84 heterosexual women were studied (Allen 7199). The results showed that the homosexual males’ AC size was matched closer to heterosexual women than heterosexual men. The AC size of the homosexual men was 18% larger than the heterosexual females and 34% larger than the heterosexual males (Allen 7199). More tests are required to determine the accuracy of the information but, the results were important in answering whether neurological development is different between heterosexuals and homosexuals.

Researchers have been desperately trying to discover a gene that may determine sexual orientation. No evidence of a particular gene has yet to be discovered. The unknown gene has been named the “Gay Gene,” and has been a part of political debates for many years. Some people are afraid of finding a gene that can determine sexual preference because of the discriminatory actions that may arise. According to Gay Science by Timothy F. Murphy, research over the topic of sexual orientation could be used to alienate homosexuals and separate them from society. The gene could be used to keep homosexuals from certain jobs, such as military participation. Any research into the genetic structure involving sexual orientation has to be done slowly and precisely because of the major uproar within society that it may cause.

Neurological research over sexual orientation studies the brain in its primary and secondary development. Neurological research for understanding sexual orientation is a vast and complex field of study. Researchers are studying the brain development in the womb, trying to find any signs of development that are linked to sexual orientation and tracking the development of certain regions of the brain throughout life....

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