In his landmark work Three Essays on the Theory of Sexuality, Sigmund Freud made a distinction between sexual object (who we are attracted to) and sexual aim (what we want to do with them), thereby making our current views on sexuality far too simplistic and forcing us to have a more complex vision of what it is to be sexual.*
IN the 1970s, in the Castro district of San Francisco, gay men developed a way of advertising their sexual desires (aims, as well as objects) and “the hanky code” was born. Today is it used among multi-gender queer communities and sm communities as well as gay male communities.
*This is true for asexual beings as well. For instance, on Freud’s view, once could be an aseuxal lesbian, or an asexual queer, or an asexual homosexual. Granted there are other ways to think about asexuality — this is just one interesting view.
Write a reaction paper (#4) on your responses to the hanky code. What is it like to think of sexuality in terms of aim (what you want to do) instead of object (who you want to do it with)? What are your sexual aims? Are they different with different objects? Can you have one without the other? Explore YOUR sexuality through aim and object in this paper.
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