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Sexing the Body: Gender Politics and the Construction of Sexualityby Ann Fausto Sterling
Synopses & Reviews
Why do some people prefer heterosexual love while others fancy the same sex? Is sexual identity biologically determined or a product of convention? In this brilliant and provocative book, the acclaimed author of Myths of Gender argues that even the most fundamental knowledge about sex is shaped by the culture in which scientific knowledge is produced.Drawing on astonishing real-life cases and a probing analysis of centuries of scientific research, Fausto-Sterling demonstrates how scientists have historically politicized the body. In lively and impassioned prose, she breaks down three key dualisms - sex/gender, nature/nurture, and real/constructed - and asserts that individuals born as mixtures of male and female exist as one of five natural human variants and, as such, should not be forced to compromise their differences to fit a flawed societal definition of normality.
This path-breaking study of gender and sexuality is the first to go beyond the nature/nurture debate to offer an alternate framework for considering questions of sex and sexuality.
Why do some people prefer heterosexual love while others fancy the same sex? Do women and men have different brains? Here Anne Fausto-Sterling argues that the answers to these thorny questions lie as much in the realm of politics as they do in the world of science.
Includes bibliographical references (p. -449) and index.
About the Author
Anne Fausto-Sterling is professor of biology and medicine at Brown University.
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