The Truth about Men, Women, and Sex

Dec 14, 2017 by

by Mark Regnerus, Public Discourse:

Recent revelations about sexual harassment, assault, and abuse underscore certain blunt realities about men, women, and sex. How can we confront those realities in a way that leads to less sexual violence?

The surprising avalanche of publicized sexual misdeeds rolls on, picking up actors, executives, and politicians along the way. What each are guilty of no doubt varies widely. But the court of public opinion is in no mood for fine distinctions.

What interests a sociologist is less the scope of the purge, its timing, or predictions about who’s next than what it all reveals about the social structure of sexual interactions between men and women, and how change here could actually happen. The revelations of late have plenty to do with the exchange model of sexual behavior, which is and will remain an accurate lens through which to understand sex. (There are other sensible lenses, too.)

The “Weinstein avalanche” highlights three stable observations about men, women, and the relationships they form. Ignoring them in the name of virtue signaling will not help. But it may require new perspective to guide our way forward toward less sexual aggression.

Three Blunt—but Essential—Truths

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