Syllabus_sxs400-soc400-psy450_Spring_2010[1]

Syllabus_sxs400-soc400-psy450_Spring_2010[1] - VARIATIONS...

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VARIATIONS IN HUMAN SEXUALITY SEXUALITY STUDIES 400-SOCIOLOGY400-PSYCHOLOGY450 DR. CHRISTOPHER CARRINGTON [SXS400: COURSE # 15450] [SOC 400: COURSE # 15348] [PSY 450: COURSE #: 15093] SPRING 2010 CLASSROOM & TIME: Creative Arts 129, 11:10-12 Monday, Wednesday, and Friday OFFICE LOCATION AND HOURS: HSS 369, 9-10 Monday, Wednesday and Friday. Office hours for Graduate and Undergraduate Teaching Assistants will be announced via the iLearn email distribution list. COURSE DESCRIPTION Variations in sexuality: sexual identity and orientations, relationships, behavior, and fantasy; identification of personal and social problems associated with varied sexual lifestyles in social scientific perspective. COURSE PURPOSE The course introduces students to scientific study of human sexual variations. The course takes an interdisciplinary approach including anthropology, economics, history, psychology (including evolutionary psychology), and sociology (including sociobiology) and other empirical disciplines. Therein, the scientific method serves as a foundation for this course. The materials we read and the research we consult rests upon observable evidence. In analyzing sexual behavior and sexual variations we will be looking for repeatable, verifiable, demonstrable, and plausible evidence in drawing conclusions. This emphasis upon scientific evidence holds great significance in two areas: First, we integrate and utilize the scientifically-derived theory of evolution. We will encounter evolutionary components and analysis of sexual variation in lectures, readings and documentaries. Second, the social scientific (e.g., history, economics, psychology etc.) materials we use in the course also rest upon the scientific method. In many discussions of sexuality, and in particular, human sexuality, other values like tradition, authority, faith, and religious texts are given priority. In this course, science, or what we can demonstrate through observation, takes priority in our analysis and in our policy recommendations. Most significantly, the course will focus energy on explaining and understanding how, and why different historical periods, different societies, and different groups within a society, respond to human sexual variations the way they do. Why might some cultures and historical periods fully embrace and celebrate polygamy or masturbation or bisexuality or interracial sex while in other historical periods and cultural contexts these same activities are taboo and stigmatized? What sociological, economic, psychological or evolutionary factors contribute to these differing societal responses? Further, what is the significance of gender, race, class, sexual orientation, age, ethnicity and religion to understanding why people respond to sexual variations the way they do? How do social institutions (education, media, the state, military, medicine and religion) influence and regulate sexual desires and behaviors? How do these institutions portray information and knowledge about sexual desires and behaviors? Do these institutions provide us
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Syllabus_sxs400-soc400-psy450_Spring_2010[1] - VARIATIONS...

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