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The Cozy Spot



8 posts categorized "Sex and Behavior"

July 19, 2008

The Bernays Principle: From Religious Sexual Abuse to Feminism

It was the apology that Sydney (and its media) eagerly waited for, and the agitation increased as the days passed by during this week, or World Youth Day Week. Sexual abuse has made headlines around the world, and it seems that there are ways to go in regard to sorting the issues out but an apology is a small and essential step. An apology is an acknowledgment of fault. As for what happens in the future? Hopefully cases will be turned over to the police instead of being internal - but there is a long way to go yet. I don't think the financial 'out of court' settlements really do much justice, when the abusers don't see a day in jail.

How and why clerical abuses occur is a mystery. One would think that sexual self-love would be sufficient. The excuse of clerical celibacy (as a partial cause) doesn't really wash because many other non-clerical people are celibate, and they don't go about taking advantage of minors. The Catholic Church has a lot of things to work on, namely figuring out a way to screen potential pederasts beforehand: perhaps psychological evaluations over the course of a year? Then again, an attitude adjustment regarding sex is another issue; any sort of repression tends to create a bottleneck. It's one thing to be celibate without religious reason, and quite another to force oneself into the fold or compromise. Perhaps the Catholic Church should look at asexual men as better candidates. Yes, asexuality is real.

The definition of asexuality varies, but an asexual person is commonly defined as a person who doesn't experience sexual attraction. Asexual, on its own, is defined as 'without sexual desire or interest.' Is it possible for a person to be asexual? According to Asexuality.Org it is. Asexuality, according to asexuality.org, is an orientation, not a choice (like celibacy). What is the difference between sexual attraction and attraction? Sexual attraction motivates the individual to act on the urge. It all makes for interesting discussions. Sexuality has existed since day dot. After all society has relied on sex to have a steady increase in population. But does reproduction really require sexual paraphernalia for sexual intercourse to occur? I tend to doubt that it does. Many population spikes, or spikes in birth rates, occurred in the era before pornographic saturation. In other words, people don't need visible sexual stimuli in order to reproduce and people can have sex without experiencing the romantic 'swept away' moment. In fact, many people have supplied information to sex surveys of the past to state that they experienced minor thrills during sex. This is usually attributed to mediocre sexual technique, poor anatomical knowledge and sexual oppression.

One person of interest, that is rarely the subject of much debate in the 21st century, is the person who is considered to be the father of 'spin' or PR, Edward Bernays. Edward was interested in his uncle's (Sigmund Freud) work on the unconscious, and was interested in manipulating public opinion by using the psychology of the subconscious. Perhaps one of the scariest quotes attributed to Bernays, is the following:

The conscious and intelligent manipulation of the organized habits and opinions of the masses is an important element in democratic society…Those who manipulate this unseen mechanism of society constitute an invisible government which is the true ruling power of our country. . . . In almost every act of our daily lives, whether in the sphere of politics or business, in our social conduct or our ethical thinking, we are dominated by the relatively small number of persons . . . who understand the mental processes and social patterns of the masses. It is they who pull the wires which control the public mind."

Bernays developed marketing techniques that are still practiced during political campaigns. His work wasn't limited to politics; he drew upon Sigmund Freud's psychoanalytic ideas to promote (by indirection) products such as cigarettes. In short, Edward Bernays was a propagandist. To this day, he is considered as the Father of PR.

Posterlightofthecross In fact, if the most recent Papal apology on sexual abuse is weighed against all the hoopla and PR of World Youth Day (events, masses and concerts featuring many 'Christian' Australian Idol finalists and winners), one can possibly see WYD for what it is – a massive gathering of people that represent a group mind. This group mind shares the same faith, and seeks like-minded individuals. One can almost taste the buzz in the polluted city air when standing among these people or pilgrims. They are affable, and not the hard boiled city person one would normally come across; many people interviewed for news programs have been quoted to say something along the lines of, 'it's nice to see people smiling in the city.' One cannot argue against the positive vibe. It's pleasant. I'm betting that the issue of clerical sexual abuse won't register strongly among the pilgrims. It will go in one ear and out the other; what they will take home from this trip is the new friendships, fun and the chance to see Pope Benedict XVI. World Youth Day is pure PR, and these sorts of endeavours aren't a surprise in an age filled with uncertainties (environmental and economic) that multiply by the day. One can go further to say that many youth need some form of spiritual sanctuary in order to feel like they matter because it's tremendously easy to feel like being a cog in a world filled with confusion, violence and elephantine sized shit. What or who is the best candidate? Youth. Religion isn't just about God, or whose God is 'best', it's also about maintaining an ordered society. By order, I mean the opposite of chaos.

The Bernay's system of PR –in today's terms- can't be considered 'genius' but it was considered genius for the 20th century. His principles tend to hinge on human vulnerability or human vulnerability is the springboard of every marketing campaign. It doesn't matter if it is religious, non-profit or commercial, the same principles are recycled and applied to just about anything; take the upcoming Sydney Sexpo as an example. The Sexpo isn't about education. There is nothing there to educate the masses about sex or sexual practice, but it is sold as a lifestyle event, but it's a commercial event. Upon entering the Sexpo, people will notice the décor; it is wall-to-wall sex toys, videos and other paraphernalia. There is no literature, other than copious adult magazines filled with women showing their 'pink'. The idea of being a sex dynamo or getting there is enough; it is every modern adult's dilemma – how great am I in bed? Can I be good in bed? Which product will help me be great in bed? Here's news: products aren't a panacea. Intimacy isn't about products.

Virginia_slims The world of feminism is interesting, and more so today. The feminist dinosaurs of the past have faded, some have found other causes, but the shadow of feminism lingers on. Like any ism – there tend to be more splits than the split ends on my scalp. There is pro-sex, there is radical, there is anti-porn, in fact there are many varieties of feminism out there; if feminism was a tobacco industry, I'm sure that women would be able to find their perfect blend of tobacco, which brings me to the next interesting morsel concerning the father of PR, Bernays, and his successful campaign to get more women to smoke in the United States, in the 20th Century.

The dilemma for the tobacco industry was as follows: How do you sell cigarettes to women when smoking is taboo for women? I think many would agree with me, even though I am a smoker, when I say that smoking would have to be a modern evil in the sense of profiteering and corporate greed, not to mention the preference of using crops for tobacco instead of food, in a world rife with hunger.

The Bernays approach or solution to overturning the female taboo on smoking is interesting because it simply shows how feminism isn't exclusive to women. Men have used feminism or feminist ideas to push products, and women fall – and continue to fall – for it. These days, however, women are told to buy something (that is associated to grooming or image) because, after all 'they work hard' and 'they can afford it.' Independence, as a concept, is still used to manipulate women.

In the Twenties, The American Tobacco Company used PR to promote cigarettes to women. A.D. Laskers adverts featured opera singers promoting Lucky Strike cigarettes. Lucky Strike was further promoted as the healthier cigarette (like a 'healthier A-Bomb?'). Then cigarettes were linked to weight control with captions such as, 'Reach for a Lucky instead of a sweet.' And the idea of thinness continues, with the word permeating certain brands like Virginia Slims (remember? The one with the 'feminist' – 'you've come a long way baby' caption?)

When Edward Bernays comes along, the picture changes. It isn't about healthier cigarettes; the campaign took a different direction: sell women cigarettes as a symbol of freedom or liberation. See, men like Bernays didn't have to wait for the feminist Sixties to arrive. It's pure social/group psychology. Even latter feminists have taken advantage of group dynamics to get their points across. The idea of cigarettes as a symbol of independence wasn't Bernays' sole idea; he arrived to that idea by way of consulting a psychiatrist who advised him. Bernays prepared for the PR campaign of THE century. It's a PR 'thang' that is still being taught, and similar marketing methods are used all the time - example: product sample bags.

Bernays hired fashion models to march in New York's Easter parade. Each model held a lit cigarette and wore a banner stating, "torch of liberty " and further on, the photographs from the parade were sent (and published) aroundBlow the world. From that point on, as soon as cigarettes became trendy, female independence and submission walked hand in hand (refer to the vintage advert on the right) Similar marketing methods are used today. I don't even want to entertain how many freebies tobacco companies give to celebrities, but even the paparazzi enters – albeit indirectly/unintentionally – the scene each time a picture of a smoking Britney Spears is captured, sold and published en masse. So much for the torch of liberty when there is clear and obvious manipulation of just about everything and it does raise questions: how liberated are women? How liberated are men? Are you as liberated as you think you are or are you as liberated as marketing companies say you are? Dita Von Teese’s smoking video, depicting her seductively sucking on a long cigarette, didn’t really wash with me; it was like stepping back into a bygone era - going backwards instead of forwards, but when I posted that video on my blog months ago (accompanying a post about the folly of tobacco marketing), some commenters swooned over Dita smoking. Go figure.

It's fair to say that marketing and advertising are needed, but I'd go further and ask myself whether a product does truly alter a person's life for the better. It may be individual. It may depend on the product. I think promoting something like a religion may be positive for some, but it still doesn't actively deal with the issues facing the world. Sexpo may be fun, but it certainly isn't educational for some, and it's more a business venture. These days cigarettes are evil, and aren't the symbol of independence for women (their addictive factor isn't a symbol of independence for any one for that matter), but sex is interesting. Now sex, there's something there. It is the new thing. It's better than cigarettes. Addiction? There is sexual addiction, but it's never really taken seriously. It's not like sexual addiction will increase one's chances of developing emphysema or lung cancer, and if you whack a condom on, the chance of contracting a disease is diminished. But is sex an adequate symbol of independence?

Are we truly independent as individuals?

May 31, 2008

Wherever Sex Is, Technology Isn't Too Far Behind

Society is moving so fast, and I often take a few moments to marvel at all the developments that are a part of everyday life. For example, the common sex toy or phallic shaped vibrator is a godsend for many women. The Daily Telegraph has a piece on model Kristy Hinze, and it refers to her relationship with Netscape founder Jim Clark. The article asks:

"ON DISCOVERING a gal who looks like this is in love with a 63-year-old man, most Aussie blokes can be heard sobbing into their beers: "What's he got that I haven't?" "

He has money; you VB swilling dudes are wasting your money on beers and Playstations.

Then there is the well known fact that there is so much more conversation with older men, and if women do want a perpetually hard phallus, then they have the option of buying one and using it in bed, along with the Viagra. Sexual technology is a given in our world.

Infidelity isn't nice, but it's always nice to know that technology can come to one's aid when suspicion reaches fever pitch. Apparently Sydney is in the midst of an 'infidelity epidemic.' It seems creepy, but it's a cool marketing tactic for surveillance gadgets. According to the SMH, 1000 people (per month) want to Robot monitor their partners. One company, aptly named Heartbreakers, sweeps homes for devices each week (talk about paranoid adulterers). The other scary thing is that surveillance has reached sci-fi proportions; conversations can be tracked via laser five kilometres away from a house. It's no longer about private dicks sitting outside in cars – how much more obvious can someone be?

Technology has caught up, and is eager to make friends with any sexual activity imaginable. Imagine a world, twenty years from now, where single adults feel more comfortable with mess-free sex? There are no more wet spots, no messy money shots, or a partner that is programmed to fulfill your personal needs right down to the letter. That option isn't too far away. According to some, sex and marriage –to robots- will be a reality before 2050.

The future may be great: male robots who actually fucking call you when they say they will. For men, female bots who don't say a) "not tonight" b) "not tonight, I have my period or c) "I'm not swallowing your load, I don't like the taste." How fantastic would that be? No more angst, no more second guessing and no more frustration.

Viva la sexual revolution…


May 12, 2008

Benedictsaurus Rex

Australia will be hosting World Youth Day, which is more about spreading the Vatican’s view on everything; we will be hosting Pope Benedict, and no doubt he will give a few fancy speeches, and I find it all amusing, considering his most recent speech about the ‘shame’ of his priest’s abusive actions. The not so funny thing is that this church tends to avoid prosecuting its errant priests. Rather than incarcerate a portion of past sexual predators, avoidance is the preferred option, and this idea, coupled to the reality that my state is paying to host this shindig, is an abomination in my mind, because I tend to add it to the current crises people within Sydney are experiencing.

There are currently many homeless families who find it difficult to find a rental property, and then there were those families who have had their homes repossessed after the sub-prime collapse overseas, and yeah, the adverts for World Youth Day are gaining momentum, and the Pope is gallivanting around spreading his thoughts on sexuality, namely that in our world, a world of rising costs, contraception is almost ‘evil’. How dare people plan their families? How dare people take control of their lives? But most of all, how dare people have sex without wanting pregnancy as the final resultant?

According to the Pontiff, sex could become like a drug. Horrendous huh?

I’m not sure what to make of our politically (and religiously) correct world. It’s a world where everything is evil/bad/hazardous or politically/religiously incorrect, when everything a person does is never enough as it doesn’t fit into the main current.

Pope Benedict has recently said that no mechanical technique can substitute for the act of love that two married people exchange as a sign of the greater mystery. How the fuck would he know? It’s not like pontiffs every ‘marry’ to be considered married. Many of the past popes had mistresses anyway, and many fathered children ‘in sin,’ and not only that, many of the modern ‘leaders’ of this church have crossed the ethical line that is consent after sexually interfering with minors. So who are they to tell the rest of the world how to conduct their sexual relationships? All these priests live a homogenous life, that may as well be technically described as ‘homosexual’ in the sense of them living with other men for the duration of their lives. Here they are, expounding on their belief of heterosexual marriage, when many have never related to women in an intimate way, and it doesn’t make sense.

What bothers me a little more though, is the idea that the state government is going to pay millions to host this Papal dinosaur, when many families who try their best, are currently struggling to find a home to live in.

I am a great believer in people practicing their own faith, and having the freedom to do it, but Benedict, like every pope, is like a dictator, thrusting the patriarchal ideas of a controlling church, on society.

Besides, World Youth Day should be renamed World Catholic Day because it is a PR roadshow. It's quite ironic to call it World Youth Day, after all the sexual misconduct (against youths) this Church is accountable for and continues to cover up.

May 10, 2008

Lazing Around in the Wee Hours

I watched I Am Legend in the early hours of this morning, and I wish I knew there were going to be freakishly virulent humans writhing with anger. I jumped a few times, and almost dropped my cup of tea on my return from the kitchen.

The film made me think. In terms of film making, I couldn’t get how Will Smith’s character still had running electricity for his lab and his flat screen television, but I thought ‘ignore that, it’s a movie,’ but the fantastic thing about this film is that it mainly relied on one character and a dog. There were no hot chicks, there was no nudity. There were no sexual references, or jokes.

Continue reading "Lazing Around in the Wee Hours" »

May 05, 2008

The Internet is Evil & Other Stories

If a massive anthology was put together, it would make for an interesting read or push The DaVinci Code off the astronomical bestseller list. As for the title of such an anthology?

The Internet is Evil

Dan Brown (not DaVinci Dan) of the London Free Press has written an interesting article about the 'evil' Internet, and he is right to say that society always uses a scapegoat. Years ago, or back to the dinosaur era when kids were skipping school to head to the game arcades, video games were the bane of every parent's existence. Each time I'd beg my mother for twenty cents for Space Invaders, she'd do a Gordon Ramsay: "Fucking Space Invaders!" But with her new Australian accent it was more like, "Farkkingk Spece Invaiiders!"

It's not about technology so much as what that technology enables a person to do or what opportunities it Bookcover80 offers a person. Unfortunately, and this is where the idea of an anthology enters the scene, the Internet enables people to indulge in fruitcake behavior. Take one person with the right amount of crazy ingredients, and the Internet is an orgasm for them. Back in the day of video games, all you did was sit there with your Atari playing Berzerk and Pong, and you had no one to play mind games with. You just hit the ball, and pretended you were having fun (even though you preferred to head down to the games arcade to get away from your boring Atari, and tilt a pinball machine for the fun of it). I loved the game arcade. The game arcade was the first and last time I was ever called a 'skinny bitch' by a boy. His name was Apostoli, yes he was a local Greek lad (the inner city was filled with migrants those years), and he was pissed at me for hogging Donkey Kong and beating his record – call it my early definition of female empowerment. And that was about as bad as it could get.

Fast forward to the age of virtuosity, with imaginary rooms, avatars and people and it can be like stepping into digital Bedlam and what is more, there is an idea of there being no limits whatsoever. Enter an adult room in Paltalk and the world is your oyster, even if the 'fat fanciers' rooms need to be labeled 'obesity' is a health hazard. And I think that is unfair. You need to be told about these things in more specific terms. Hey, I'm no prude, just tell me what I'll find in the damn room. It's not good enough to say, 'you have to be over eighteen or twenty-one,' in this day and age. Hell, I'm almost three years from forty, but if I see a twisted set of cock and balls in the midst of CBT, I'm going to be put off my Cornflakes. Specificity is key.

In 1976, the film Sybil was a groundbreaking story about multiple personality disorder. Sally Field was amazing in that film. She won awards. Linda Blair in the Exorcist was something else. It horrified the world, but now, what is there to be horrified about when you can find that sort of thing at the press of a button? It is one thing to have a writing nom de plume, but it is quite another to interact with people using different online personalities, to delve in a relationship or make friends with people using assumed names. Screw the political correctness, but that is downright crazy (or 'crazeyyyyy'), and the thing is this, it's not as though the people aren't aware of doing it, like the real-life Sybil (Shirley Ardell Mason) and other people who genuinely deserve sympathy, they are fully aware of doing it and do it for ulterior (and selfish) reasons.

Psycho1 What compels some people to do this on the Internet? From my own personal experience, being on the receiving end of the occasional loon in chat rooms and the like, it is based on some sexual pretext and it's not the Internet that is evil. It's not about evil. It's about having a convenient medium to mask and create many personalities. There have been moments when I have thought that this type of behavior isn't about craziness per se, but about pathological lying that aims to extract information, something that Barbed Wire outlines well in her blog entry about Internet loons.

Think about it. The multiple chat persona/avatar creates so many stories about themselves, and happens to know everything there is to be known about people you know, and just before you head into Crazyville, you realize that you're dealing with a species that would make Alien look like a Gremlin. That is how I can sum up the Single White Female in my chat world back then. I have fantasized about so many ways to inflict pain on her, that it would make me look demented, and I probably am, but that is the thing: these people bring out all sorts of ugly in innocent people. To this day, you'll never find me in a chat room. At work, people would often discuss things like online dating or chatting, and I'd experience a form of post traumatic stress disorder (there ought to be an Internet version) with 'oh no…no…nooooooooooo! Stop talking, la-la-la-la I'm not listening. Fuck off!'

In the seven or so years of using the Internet, I can form my own little fractured anthology.

There was the guy who was really a girl, who'd chat up females, and get them on the phone, with a convincing masculine voice, and do all sorts of phone sex things, for the girls to find out the truth and feel violated.

There was Single White Female, who made it her mission to befriend as many people as possible to find out all the goss in a small chat community, and to wreak havoc by sleeping with as many attached males that she could, and then return on the chat medium to announce her feminine superiority to hapless women, after bedding their men.

There were two male friends who'd interchange personalities, and share the same girls online.

There was a group of bored young adults comprising of a closeted Greek dude, his female friend (with the macho voice) and two little fairy types, who'd chat up innocent people, and offer their contact phone numbers to the people, with the people unaware that the phone numbers they were getting were their own phone numbers (confusing yes). So the poor sods would realize they'd spent an hour wasting their time.

There is the case of my first ever cyber male, and him being an effeminate hardcore queen who still lived with his parents at the age of thirty-seven and pretended he wasn't gay to those within the community. I'll never forget meeting that guy at a chat social event and thinking so many politically incorrect thoughts such as, 'which gay male would spent hours trying to cyber a female?'

If, during the era of video games and Atari, the technology back then could offer the same thing to certain nut jobs, they'd definitely take it up. It's not about the technology being evil per se, it's about the small portion of people being nut jobs and the Internet being a versatile technology, that is much like nuclear technology. Now you get your good and bad in all technologies. Without nuclear technology we wouldn’t have treatments for things like cancer, or a way to provide cheap energy to households and businesses, but nuclear technology also has its ugly side in nuclear bombs. The Internet is the same. It’s fantastic for bridging the geographical gap and providing information at a second’s notice, but it also has its crap side, and that side manifests in the virtual multiple personalities and trolls that drive you crazy every now and then.

April 14, 2008

The Erotic Star?

Do you somethings get the feeling that the years of reality television have caught up with real life or have influenced the way people behave toward an issue, toward you, or toward anything within their own life?

If I had cameras in my house and posted every corner of my existence - from bathroom leak to living room horror movie freak - on this blog, it would be so freaking boring. Even my masturbation sessions are boring. I don’t really go into detail about how I masturbate because I need some sort of privacy. Not only that, I don’t want to open the veil and give everyone a peek at the bikini line I trim (nope, I’m not into the a la bald cunt look).

Sometimes I’ve wondered if people think ‘pretend there are cameras everywhere, how would I be?’ and they go for it.

Take the humble date as one example. You’re on a date, and your date is on their best behavior. In fact, they’re acting like they’re a runner up from Big Brother, asking you all the right questions, offering up all kinds of knowledge about the wine, and you think, ‘this is not my beautiful date, this is not my beautiful life, it has been invaded by reality TV.’

Is it the Proteus Effect, or is it something much darker…the Warhol Concept? The behavior that is seen on reality television shows isn’t really desirable behavior. In fact, it’s quite nasty behavior. All the people are horrendous, many of whom you would not choose for a date, let alone resuscitate by mouth. Yeah, I’m mean, get over it.

So it was when I entered yet another work meeting that I asked myself ‘WTF,’ which is short for, ‘This is incredibly absurd and I’m going to go Vlad the Impaler on your ass.’ The entire event reminded me of Candid Camera, which - in my view- was one of the first reality television shows (that was done for the sheer fun and not money). At one point I even stated it, “this is not reality television, this is my life and I’m bored with these bullshit procedures,’ but I’m not going to linger there…let’s get straight into the sex.

But there is another better example of the influence of reality television and that arises with sex. You know you or your partner have caught the reality television bug when you:

1. Set up your video camera in the bedroom and have created a shortlist of all the ideal sex positions to use.
2. You have rehearsed all those positions and have recorded a few trial videos to feel comfortable doing wheelbarrow and reverse cowgirl - and capturing it all on film.
3. You talk like porn stars in the sack and fuck with the philosophy, “fuck like you’re being filmed.” But really no one is watching you in the bedroom (and no one really cares)…well not unless you post your video on the Internet.
4. You have increased your PDA frequency - so everyone will see what a perfect couple you are, not that everyone cares about the public (‘get a room’) display of affection, because they aren’t as insecure as you are.
5. Consider entering Erotic Star Search.

I’m not one to talk during sex. It’s the problem I’ve had…wait, it’s not a problem, but it has been made into a problem by porno directors who love to portray sex with corny lines like, ‘fuck my pussy!’ which is more like a delayed reaction because the porn actress uttering that line is being jack hammered by her male co-star, and has been jack hammered for a few positions prior to uttering that line, and it makes you think, ‘are you that dumb, biatch, that you can’t tell you’re getting it?’ Porn film tends to insult my intelligence on a Grande scale, especially when I hear a frothy porn cock slut saying something like ‘fuck my ass!’ and I think ‘D’oh dirhead, you’ve been getting it in the backdoor for the last five minutes. You think your guy hasn’t noticed his dick is in your ass?’

But when these things enter the real bedroom…THAT is when it’s like a reality show circus. Oh yeah, it has happened to me. I’ve been on the receiving end of the bedroom Tarantino type, and strangely enough it didn’t arouse me. It did however evoke a few dark, morbid fantasies of my then-lovers entrails wrapped around the wrought iron headboard, but that was about it. And I don’t get it. It’s like ‘hello you’re about to get sex, which is something you have been working toward for the bulk of your male adolescence. Why sabotage it now with corny lines? Are you that stupid?’  Which brings me to my personal favorites:
1. Being asked (during the deed) something stupid like, ‘what am I doing to you?’ for me to think, “Jesus Christ I can’t get my mind into gear because I’m working on my orgasm at this time - please call back later!”
2. Being shown Mr Penis and either being asked what I think, for me to think, ‘do you want a Master thesis or a complete dissertation?’
3. The other person assuming I like being called either of the following in bed: Cockslut, Slut, Whore, or cockwhore, just because they’ve read it, viewed it, and think it’s tres sexy, when really, it’s more close to trailer park with a dash of Tabasco B grade porn.

Women don't have to be whores or satisfy that notion, in order to be alluring, interesting, intelligent, funny or sexy. In fact, the fantasy-porn capitalist notion of 'whore' and 'cockwhore' or any type of stereotypical whore feeds into the Madonna/Whore Syndrome. It's like Pavlovian conditioning that aims to teach or condition people (especially men) to associate sexiness with pornified whoredom, which isn't positive for women who don't wish to live their lives like a reality television show.

Life is not reality television.

April 06, 2008

Genetic Sexual Attraction: Fathers & Daughters

It is something that could be entered in the Freud volumes. Perhaps one of the most controversial media stories to hit Australian television and news media, the story of a sexual relationship between a father and daughter, and their baby son, will definitely open the can of social worms as this case doesn't involve  an underaged daughter, but a woman who was 31 years of age when she decided to enter a sexual relationship with her biological father. It raises many red flags: her state of mind, reasoning for her choice, and on it goes. A psychologist's wet dream: the baby's father is also her grandfather.

Genetic Sexual Attraction (GSA) usually occurs when family members have been separated for a large period of time, to reunite and for romantic/sexual emotions to develop. GSA was coined in the eighties, and is the appropriate term for those who are biologically related, who romanticize relationships.

The Australian stories of genetic sexual attraction will be available sometime today on the 60 Minutes web site.

March 27, 2008

If Funisia Dorothea Could Talk...

That's right, if this tube like creature could talk, it would say "Yeah whatever, I've done this millions of years ago, and it's not anything new!" The thing? Sexual reproduction. This week, scientists put a date on sexual reproduction.

Speaking of strange life forms, Toxoplasma Gondii is a nuisance, and it is estimated that 30-60% of theToxoplasma_gondii population is infected by this parasite that cats and rats carry. Its other side (supposed) side effect in women? Promiscuity.

It's strange to come across that detail, considering I tested positive for Toxoplasmosis years ago when I was tested for glandular fever (that I did have) at the age of 29. I had no idea. The doctor asked me if I remembered being ill with a high temperature, and I said, "Many children experienced the symptoms you describe." And I did have a cat when I was around five years of age. Ongoing studies with this parasite involve testing it on rats to see how it alters behavior, and the most recent development in that is the reduction of intrinsic fear in rats toward cats.

It all makes for interesting reading, and it can raise many questions. Billions have been spent on the development of nuclear weapons, but bacteria and parasites are cheaper weapons. If a parasite, like Toxoplasma can reduce fear or alter behavior (depending on concentration perhaps?), imagine the possibilities? It is scary. People may think they are the true masters of their behavior, but who is to say that miniscule bacteria and parasites don't exert an influence over the years, and to the extent of shaping sexual behavior? And it makes sense. Fear reduction increases the chance of taking risks, or impulsive behavior. On a lower level, it can be positive, open the playing field and enable innovation, but if it is extreme, then it enters Jackass proportions.

Hmm, now I wonder why cats have a certain smugness?

Dogs have masters, Cats have staff!

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