1) spread of left-handers according to the frequencies on p. 27:
asexuals (26%) > (exclusive and non-exclusive) lesbians (20%) > heterosexuals (12%) > (exclusive and non-exclusive) gays (9%)
==> left-handers as a sort of vanguard, people who like to try out new (somewhat anti-traditional) identities?
2) Yule's figure 2.3. (p. 32) illustrates a statistically significant different as for the number of older brothers: the more older brothers he has, the more likely a right-handed (but not a left-handed) man is to be asexual (as opposed to heterosexual)
==> a very interesting finding which might explain how Tibetan polyandry works in practice
==> dominance effect modified by anything?
3) Yule's figure 2.4. (p. 33) implies a very different effect concerning women: the more older brothers a left-handed woman has, the more likely she is to be lesbian (as opposed to asexual). Note though that Yule doesn't distinguish between exclusive and non-exclusive lesbians, both of both she simply calls "non-heterosexual". Anyhow, I suggest to interpret that finding as an "encroaching sexual pattern" in women with older brothers because the opposite doesn't seem to be heterosexuality but asexuality.
==> Dominance/sexual evasion effect?
4) Right-handed males seemed to react on older sisters like that, too (p. 35). Interestingly, asexual men appear to have by less sisters, too (p. 36).
==> Do older sisters prevent right-handed males from becoming asexual (or was that result due to the limited number of asexual men in Yule's study)? If so, how?
==> Dominance/sexual evasion effect in case of right-handed gays?
5) Older sisters seem to increase both homosexuality and heterosexuality in right-handed women in particular (p. 37: figure 2.6.).
==> I think, it's safe to conclude that female sexuality strongly depends on the competition they're exposed to.
==> Figure 2.6.c IMO does imply that left-handed women tend to react similarly. But Yule doesn't mark their numbers as "significant". So the influence of older sisters might be weaker on left-handed sisters. Or left-handed women might perceive less competition in such a situation because they're anyway different from mainstream women.
Why do people call themselves "asexual"?
We already had two preparatory thread in this forum on of which is invisible because it's IMO too personal:
The matter is obviously not about the question whether there are people who reproduce in an asexual way. It's about discursive rules which have something to do with reproduction. Traditionally, there are (were) different gender roles in many cultures. Moreover, there are basic sexual roles during (biological) copulation. But why don't Anglo-Saxon people just keep sexual roles out of daily language? Why do they self-identify with these roles when they communicate with people who could care less?
In West Asian cultures it can be observed that sexual talk eases communication at intermediate ranges: it might serve as a means of identifying those who want to procreate as potentially interested in contributing to a future of one or the other community. Similarly, sexual humour might create an additional amount of trust in West Asians at socially intermediate distances. Anglo-Saxon discursive rules might be a bit different because of the Victorian past of Anglo-Saxons. But it's not too unlikely that the logic is comparable and the rules are somehow similar.
By contrast, people who (ideally) remain asexual might strive for something different from conventional community. See, e.g., Kudlien in "Chastity and healing power":
The according expectations might result in distrust rather than trust because the celibate doesn't necessarily contribute enough to community from the POV a regular community member.wrote:The idea of a connection between chastity and healing power is to be found as well in primitive cultures as in ethnomedicine and in the medicine of Antiquity. What is meant in the Hippocratic Oath, though, is not the sexual restraint of the physician himself, but moreover in the attitude towards his patient and all the people living in the same house with the patient. This is different, though, in ethnomedicine, where the healer is demanded to live sexually abstinent for a certain time and the persons assisting him are often expected to stay untouched, i.e. chaste. "Chastity", however, as conceived by the Ancient Greek and Roman meant the integrity of marital faith. The urine of women who were chaste in this sense was believed to have healing powers. Furthermore mention is made of an African tribe, of which it was said that its members originating definitely from this tribe only, were immune against the bite of snakes and therefore had a special capacity of healing bitten persons. Ethnomedicine, on the other side, attributes great power to those who lead an unchaste life as well as to illegitimately born children. We are here confronted with an ambiguity inherent in popular imagination of disease and healing. A figure of German poetry of the Middle Ages "Der Arme Heinrich" by Hartmann von Aue, f.i., is in search of the heartblood from a young, freeborn maiden which is to cure him from leprosy. In many cases objects used by virgins or unmarried men were believed to have healing powers. Especially the imagination of epilepsy and orgasm being related to each other, lead to the claim for sexual abstinence of the patient, yes, even for his castration. On the other hand, however, epileptics were recommended to have sexual intercourse. Fasting, sometimes together with sexual abstinence, was considered to be important for the healer and as well for the patient to be cured. Plants were given in order to lead to sexual abstinence. In primitive cultures the imagination of sexual activity leading to a loss of the powers that are needed for healing, is to be found very often.
Now, Anthony Bogaerts does something IMO interesting in his new article "Asexuality and autochorissexualism (identity-less sexuality)": he proposes a new paraphiliac category: "autochorissexualism" and, simultaneously, reduces the hypothetical percentage of "asexuals". (See also http://ifp.nyu.edu/2012/journal-article ... sexuality/ .) Paraphilias are considered to be in a grey zone between "tolerable" and "taboo". At least that's what recent internet discourses in English language IMO suggest. So it's probably going into the direction of a question like, "Who is 'equal' enough to be dignified?" In other words: those who call themselves "asexuals" seemed to have behaved as if they wanted to be perceived as "different" from mainstream people by calling themselves "asexuals". Thus, they couldn't remain 'equal' in the sense of the 'equal' elite (of free men) in Germanic and French cultures. And maybe that's why Bogaerts reclassified part of them as ranking below mainstream people.
==> What can be learnt from these phenomena?
- IMO it must be presupposed that all human sexuality is basically regulated by intra-ethnic discursive norms. And the way sexual phenomena are classified can determine ethnic boundaries. Based on this, one can conclude that the Anglo-Saxon world remains conservative, despite of having structurally overcome Jante Law in more than one way. That's why people try out strategies like "asexual" self-identification. But this strategy of integration doesn't necessarily make sense to mainstream observers. Rather, the label might be attractive for people who have been outsiders in the Anglo-Saxon world right from the start, such as isolated immigrants, as we already started to discuss in the thread about reasons for (non-)reproduction.