Tuesday, September 24

Self-Hate Crime - A new book blames unsafe sex among young gay men as a product of internalized homophobia, according to the NYTimes. I think there's no doubt that depression plays a role, and it's a mental illness that's probably a lot more common than people realize. Probably, much of this self-loathing is based on sexuality, especially for the young and recently-out. On the other hand, we shouldn't focus on internalized homophobia to exclusion of other defects in gay self-esteem (e.g., body naziism).

The Times also dredges up the now-classic 1996 Adams study that attempted to prove the psychoanalytical maxim that homophobic men actually have repressed homosexual urges. Interestingly, the reports of this study almost never mention its alternative hypothesis, in which the authors note that anxiety, another possible emotional response to depictions of gay sex, has also "been shown to enhance arousal and erection."