The Influence of Physical Body Traits and Masculinity on Anal Sex Roles in Gay and Bisexual Men

Department of Communication, University of Texas at San Antonio, San Antonio, TX 78249, USA.
Archives of Sexual Behavior (Impact Factor: 3.53). 04/2011; 40(4):835-41. DOI: 10.1007/s10508-011-9754-0
Source: PubMed


Sociological, psychological, and public health studies document that many gay and bisexual men may self-label by their anal penetrative role (i.e., bottom or exclusively receptive; top or exclusively insertive; or versatile, both receptive and insertive during anal intercourse). Yet, what orients men to think of themselves as tops, bottoms or versatiles is poorly understood. We surveyed 429 men engaging in same-sex anal intercourse to investigate the degree to which anal penetrative self-identity was concordant with actual penetrative behavior. Additionally, the roles of masculinity and physical body traits (e.g., penis size, muscularity, height, hairiness, and weight) were tested as correlates of anal penetrative identity and identity-behavior concordance. Tops and bottoms showed a high degree of concordance between identity and enacted behavior; however, only half of versatiles reported concordant identity and behavior (i.e., wanting to be versatile and actually reporting versatile behavior). Generally, tops reported larger penises than bottoms. They also reported being comparatively more masculine than bottoms. Versatiles fell somewhat between the tops and bottoms on these traits. Of the six independent variables, penis size and masculinity were the only two factors to influence concordance or discordance between identity and penetrative behavior. Our study suggests that the correlates of gay men's sexual self-labels may depend on objective traits in addition to the subjective pleasure associated with receptive or insertive anal intercourse.

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    • "ole in sexual activity Hooker, 1965 preference for roles Hart et al., 2003 preference for sexual activity Ross, 1975 sexual-role behavior Carballo-Diéguez, 2004 sex-role preference Carrier, 1977 sexual role preferences Moskowitz et. al., 2008 genitoerotic roles Weinrich et al., 1992 sex roles Moskowitz, Hart, 2011 behavioral sex roles Coxton et al., 1993 preference for intercourse Zheng & Zheng, 2011 Downloaded by [Mr Jerzy Adam Kowalski] at 11:41 07 August 2015 A c c e p t e d M a n u s c r i p t 30 role behaviour van Druten et al., 1996 intercourse preference position Zheng et al., 2012 erotic roles Singh et al., 1999 homosexual gender labels Walker et al., 2012 sexual practices Wegison et al., 2000 sexual preferences Johns et al., 2012 Downloaded by [ "
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    ABSTRACT: The attempt is made to initially arrange in the terms of methodology the area of the research on partner roles in homoerotic relations. These issues have been noticed fairy early in human history, e.g., different roles performed or bimodal polarization, but only recently the science become interested in this. It is suggested to cover all such roles by the term sexual partner roles (SPR) instead of various terms used and to classify them according to the ethological evolutionary approach into the appetitive and consummatory SPR. Further details of the division are discussed, and the utility of such classification is marked.
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    • "A recent study conducted in China found that tops scored higher than bottoms on instrumentality, interests toward things versus people, and self-ascribed masculinity, bottoms scored higher than tops on expressiveness, with versatiles' scores being intermediate between tops and bottoms (Zheng et al., 2012). For example, tops were higher than bottoms on instrumentality and self-reported masculinity (Moskowitz & Hart, 2011; Zheng et al., 2012). Sexual self-labels seem to be related to gender typical behavior both in childhood and adulthood. "
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    • "I'm looking more for the person than the position preference.'' Previous studies have found that sexual minority men's selfreported penis size is associated with their sexual position identity (Grov et al., 2010; Moskowitz & Hart, 2011). Our results suggest that partner's absolute and relative penis size may both influence position identity. "
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