Sexuality & Agency

Dear World,

According to wikipedia, there are 2 distinct types of agency within the realm of sociology & philosophy. The first: “unconscious, involuntary behavior”. The second: “purposeful, goal directed activity (intentional action)”. I find this distinction fascinating, as it reminds me of how sexuality is treated in America.

American culture treats sexuality as if it were allied with Satan. Any sexual object is depicted with some devilish trait (i.e. the evil demon seductress trope). Virgins are depicted as angelic (i.e. young girls dressed in flawless white gowns). Get the picture? Treating human sexuality in this way acts to “sweep it under the rug”. It’s like your evil cousin who lives next door*. She’s a part of your life on a regular basis, but you’d really prefer her not to be. Yet sexuality continues to be a part how we understand and relate to others.

Sweeping sexuality under the rug is a terrible idea, as it prevents intentional agency. Could the agency most have over sexuality be of the unconscious variety? In my experience, sexual interactions of this nature surface mostly as involuntary behavior. This defined even my sexuality for years. I felt unable to act intentionally with regard to my intimate relationships. Without intentional action, my relationships were routinely involuntary and/or provisional.

Intentional agency, in my view, automatically requires one to disregard the “sexuality = devil” paradigm. Painting sexuality as satanic attempts to separate it from the human experience, which is impossible. It is fully integrated into the human experience. Accept sexuality as a part of your sense of self, whether you like it or not. Only then will you be able to take control of your sexuality. Only then will you be able to act with intention.

A Frolicker of Sexual Fluidity

*I have no 1st cousins. I am not trying to insult anyone.

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