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Sexualities: How useful might it be for educators to promote a more dynamic, four dimensional and ever-evolving, approach, addressing orientation Identity; Labels; Attractions and Behaviours?
So often when I teach on sexualities, a number of students immediately fall into an historical, dyadic, trap with a hetero-homo divide. This traditional continuum or divide considers bisexuality as oscillating somewhere in the middle. When I inject other terms into the melting pot: bi-curious; heteroflexible; gay-for-pay; SMSM (straight males who have sex with males); situational homosexuality, etc. you can feel those grey-matter cells race along at break-speed pace.
Considering socially constructed "identity labels" as somewhat of a closed concept - ie the de facto label used to equate sexual orientation with a person’s identity: “I’m gay!” “I’m straight!” “You’re a fag!” - doesn't always seem fit for purpose. Look how both the identity and the label can be 'moveable feasts'; they might even have totally different meanings when they are overt (out in the open / shown to others) or covert, hidden: visible to a select few. The orientation may therefore include more than one identity, as might the label(s). Of course, many Queer Theorists would question the very relevance of trying to use definitions for identities or labels in the first place. In these metrosexual and post-everything days, does anyone still believe in biological immutability? In the practice of daily life, of course, many people obviously do.
When one considers that both a person’s identity and the label they use for it could be an overt 'front' for differing, covert – and maybe abject - feelings of attraction, or for sexual or relational practices with others, then isn't it about time these four dimensions got more of a public outing?
Prof Jane Ward (@thequeerjane), in her 2015 book Not Gay: sex between straight white men (#NotGayBook) unpicks the notion of behaviours or practices that some might consider to be ‘sex’, or sexual, whilst others clearly do not. For me, the range of diversity goes to demonstrate the wonderful complexity of being human. So, I ask: how might it be possible to get more educators (especially in schools, for compulsory education, and for the health professions) to move away from outmoded dyads in gender and sexuality studies? How might they explore not just orientation identities, but the impact of situational labels and the wider complexities of erotic capital, such as in inter-personal attractions and behaviours which do not always conform to the taken-for-granted (orientation) identity or its label?
Specifically thinking of working with trans* clients and/or clients who have more fluid identities and sexualities.
I have a text data which has two columns:
53014 Gravitation and spacetime
3067 Mapping desire, geographies of sexualities
941 British civilization, an introduction
The first column is the label which could be up 27 digits (but most of them have 3 or 4 digits) and could belong to the class 0-9 (the starting digit). As you can see we have like thousands of classes (when considering the next digits)
My first problem is that this data is imbalanced and the entries that start with number 3 are many many more compared to the other classes. (see first image ddc_group_counts.png)
I've been looking through oversampling methods but they are mostly for numeric data. I unfortunately can not convert my data since I need to later feed the text data into a neural network (BERT network by Google research team).
So are there any methods I can use to generate some more text data for the minor classes?
Can you refer me to any paper which have done something similar or can help me?
The other point is when I inspect the data inside each of those 9 groups (by considering only the first two digits in their labels like: 00, 01, 03, ... 20, 21, 23,... and so on) it again shows an highly imbalanced structure inside each of the 9 classes (two other images).
Are there maybe methods to make the distribution of such a text data more uniform?
Can you refer me to any papers on this?
as a sexualities researcher, I am faced with a difficult question regarding the complex dynamics between seeking ways in which evidence-based science on human sexual orientation (e.g. on the normalcy of homo-/bi-sexuality, understanding of unchangeability and immutability in the domain of attractions; proven harmful effects of sexual orientation change efforts - SOCE; minority stress and stigma influence on LGBT+ people's well-being, etc.) collide with the prevalent doctrines perpetuated by various Churches (e.g. by Catholic Church, etc.). For example, in most of the Catholic discussions or written sources, I continue to see distinguishing between one's sexual orientation (as a trait) and the seeming (and seen as sinful) choice of acting upon this "drive" or "impulse".
By making this distinction, one is faced with a view in which human (homo/bi)sexuality is represented as (a) suppressible and (b) possibly changeable.
Here, I would like to ask you, fellow scholars, if you have some resources, references, results of your research as well as consequent suggestions in which it may be possible to find fruitful grounds for progressive discussion with a capacity for reconciling this schism between scientific evidence on (a) understanding of sexuality as human natural physiological need similar to hunger or thirst (Maslow 1987 Motivation and Personality), and (b) unchangeability of sexual orientation and harmful practices of SOCE which is backed by several position statements by respected scientific communities like World Psychiatric Association (Bhugra, D., Eckstrand, K., Levounis, P., Kar, A., & Javate, K. R. (2016). WPA Position Statement on Gender Identity and Same-Sex Orientation, Attraction and Behaviours. World psychiatry: official journal of the World Psychiatric Association (WPA), 15(3), 299–300. https://doi.org/10.1002/wps.20340)
In this view, the religious (normative, moral) requirement of suppression or alteration of someone's sexual orientation and proscribed partner selection effectively restricting homo/bisexual individuals' potentials for forming and sustaining long-term relationships (and in this view acting upon their physiological desires) poses a substantial barrier to their well-being as well. The significance of these questions surpass individuals or interindividual psychology, they foray into law, religious freedoms, bioethics and so much more.
I am sure that many have asked themselves similar questions, so perhaps this discussion will also benefit other scholars.