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Australian philosopher, literary critic, legal scholar, and professional writer. Based in Newcastle, NSW. My latest books are THE TYRANNY OF OPINION: CONFORMITY AND THE FUTURE OF LIBERALISM (2019); AT THE DAWN OF A GREAT TRANSITION: THE QUESTION OF RADICAL ENHANCEMENT (2021); and HOW WE BECAME POST-LIBERAL: THE RISE AND FALL OF TOLERATION (2024).

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

"Is the future bisexual" - by Veronica Pamoukaghlian

Last week, I heard a girl on the radio, who was talking about how she would have no problem doing a threesome with another girl, if her boyfriend desired it. The girl’s carefree attitude, revealing to hundreds of thousands of strangers that she was open to a bisexual experience reminded me of a certain 2005 study from the CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics I had recently come across, which showed an increased percentage of girls who had had a homosexual experience compared to a similar study from 10 years earlier.

The implication would be that bisexuality might be losing the stigma that still pervades homosexuality and especially male homosexuality. If we look at popular media, there are clearly many more bisexual characters being portrayed in mainstream media today than a few decades ago. Groundbreaking films in that sense have included Basic Instinct, with its portrayal of a powerful bisexual female played by Sharon Stone, and Henry & June, which presented the complex relationships between writer Henry Miller, his wife and that icon of female sexual liberation — French writer Anais Nin. Popular TV series of the 21st century have also started commonly incorporating bisexual characters; with House as a prime example.

Full by article Veronica Pamoukaghlian here.


Alex said...

Doesn't seem like there is much evidence for an increase in bisexuality. It seems that any greater awareness/visibility can be put down to greater acceptance of homosexuality.

Adrian said...

I don't *feel* like having a homosexual encounter but I thought many cultures that don't/didn't attach such strong stigmas to homosexuality had a lot more male-male affection (kissing, hugging) and probably more sexual relationships. I'm thinking of some modern South American countries where men can kiss and hold hands and of stories of early Greece and Rome where bisexuality was supposed to be more common. I don't know if that's true or some later fiction to demonize them however.

If true it implies our current views are cultural not biological so a cultural shift could bring back more bisexuality. It sounds nice but I doubt I'll live to see it.

Anonymous said...

I somehow suspect they were always there, but unacknowledged.

Note that in the film about Kinsey (with Liam Neeson and Laura Linney), both Kinsey and his wife were shown as bisexual.


Spencer Troxell said...

It makes sense that bisexuality would eventually become more widely embraced, especially when you consider the fact that most of us exist somewhere along that continuum, rather than at the opposing poles of homosexuality and heterosexuality.

here's to a world where folks aren't stigmatized for following benign natural inclinations.

Svlad Cjelli said...

The future shrugs.

Russell Blackford said...

Spencer, I'll join in a toast to that!