Skip Navigation
We concur that identity that is sexual perhaps perhaps not adequate for comprehending the epidemiology

We concur that identity that is sexual perhaps perhaps not adequate for comprehending the epidemiology

Is MSM a term that is useful explaining teams that eschew prominent LGB categories?

Much was manufactured from the fact guys regarding the DL lead secret lives plus don’t think about by themselves homosexual.25 , 26 But DL just isn’t a behavioral category that may be conveyed as MSM. As Frank Leon Roberts has place it, “DL is . . . about doing a brand new identification and embracing a hip-hop sensibility [italics added].”27 DL functions much less a nonidentity but as a substitute identity that is sexual community denoting same-gender interest, masculine gender roles distinct through the feminized sissy or faggot, Black racial/ethnic identification, and a dissociation from both White and Ebony middle-class homosexual countries.26 – 28

Most certainly not all individuals encounter sexual identification as salient.

It is as true of White gents and ladies since it is of people of color. Our point is the fact that discourse on intimate minorities should deal with identification. To label as MSM and WSW individuals who describe on their own as homosexual or lesbian or utilize another identification term is always to deny their self-labeling and, by expansion, their self-determination. We think that that is ethically indefensible. As mentioned by Battle et al.: “Debates about identification aren’t insignificant because they determine not merely the general public identification regarding the team, but additionally assist to build and solidify emotions of pride, empowerment, and purpose that is political team users. Therefore, the politics of identification can be a component that is essential of politics of recognition and circulation.”11

OBSCURING THE SOCIAL CONCEPT OF SEX

We agree totally that identity that is sexual maybe not adequate for knowing the epidemiology and avoidance of HIV/AIDS or other health issues, however it is not even close to unimportant. In modern social studies of sex, distinctions were made among intimate identities, desires, and behaviors.29 , 30 certainly, comprehending that these measurements of sex usually do not constantly travel together in predictable methods ended up being one impetus for launching the terms MSM and WSW. But WSW and MSM can obscure critical inquiry into the social meaning of sex. Thinking in flat terms that are behavioral lead us to disregard affiliation companies and communities which can be essential types of information, norms, and values and that offer resources for wellness advertising efforts.

A case that is striking point may be the research of elevated HIV prices among sexual-minority feminine injection medication users in accordance with other injection medication users.3 , 31 numerous such women can be typically looked at as situational WSW, in mention of same-gender behavior that is purportedly involved with solely for product or social gain in the place of for erotic or intimate hidden cam couple purposes. Such women can be considered the best subjects for an label that is identity-free as WSW. To your contrary, but, younger and colleagues discovered that female injection medication users in New York City described complex social circumstances that included emotionally and erotically spent relationships along with their feminine lovers; most identified on their own as homosexual, a term usually preferred by these females over lesbian.32

To know the regularly elevated rates of

HIV among these females, you should start thinking about exactly the kind of shared experiences that are social WSW obscures. In reality, we think that WSW may thwart knowledge of risk for HIV among these ladies given that it concentrates attention on solely behavioral facets. But HIV danger among WSW injectors can’t be explained as the result of woman-to-woman behavior that is sexual. The pattern just is sensible once we realize that WSW injectors additionally share a sexual-minority status which involves contact with discrimination and exclusion, relationship habits, and norms that are subcultural. These insights could be extended with other health disparities, such as for instance cigarette smoking or obesity, which also vary between sexual-minority along with other females but that aren’t linked right to, and cannot be explained by, sexual behavior.