Vô tính

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Vô tính (tiếng Anh: asexual hay nonsexuality)[1][2][3] là sự không bị hấp dẫn tình dục, hoặc không hay ít quan tâm đến các hoạt động tình dục.[4][5][6] Nó có thể được xem là sự không có, hoặc là một trong những thiên hướng tình dục, bên cạnh dị tính, đồng tínhsong tính.[7][8][9] Đây cũng có thể là một thuật ngữ rộng hơn để chỉ một loạt các loại hình vô tính khác nhau. Một nghiên cứu năm 2004 cho thấy tỉ lệ người vô tính trong dân số Anh là 1%.[7][10]

Vô tính khác với kiêng tình dụccelibacy[11][12] ở chỗ cả hai dạng sau đều thuộc về hành vi và đến từ quan điểm cá nhân hay tôn giáo,[13] trong khi vô tính là một thiên hướng tình dục và có khuynh hướng lâu dài hoặc vĩnh viễn.[14] Một số người vô tính vẫn có hoạt động tình dục mặc dù thiếu ham muốn cũng như hấp dẫn tình dục bởi vì họ muốn làm thỏa mãn đối tác, để làm cho mình dễ chịu, để sinh con, hoặc vì một số lý do nào khác.[6][11]

Sự chấp nhận vô tính như là một thiên hướng tình dục và là một lĩnh vực của nghiên cứu khoa học vẫn còn khá mới,[4][6][8] bởi những nghiên cứu về mặt xã hội cũng như tâm lý học về chuyện này mới chỉ mới bắt đầu.[6] Trong khi một vài nhà nghiên cứu khẳng định đây là một thiên hướng tình dục, số khác lại không xem như vậy.[8][9]

Với đà phát triển của Internet và mạng xã hội, nhiều cộng đồng vô tính khác nhau đã được hình thành. Nổi tiếng nhất và đông đảo hơn cả là Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN), thành lập năm 2001 bởi David Jay.[9][15]

Định nghĩa, Definition, identity and relationships[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Do có sự khác nhau đáng kể giữa những người tự xem mình là vô tính cho nên vô tính có thể xem là một khái niệm rộng.[16] Các nhà nghiên cứu nhìn chung coi vô tính là sự không cảm thấy hấp dẫn tình dục hoặc không quan tâm đến tình dục,[4][6][9] nhưng các định nghĩa của họ thì khác nhau, đại loại như "các cá nhân có ít hoặc không có ham muốn tình dục, cảm thấy ít hoặc không thấy hấp dẫn tình dục, có ít hoặc không có hành vi tình dục; các mối quan hệ thuần túy lãng mạn không tình dục; hoặc kết hợp giữa không có ham muốn lẫn hành vi tình dục."[6]

Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) định nghĩa người vô tính là "những ai không cảm thấy hấp dẫn tình dục" và phát biểu "một ít số ít sẽ nghĩ mình là vô tính trong một khoảng thời gian ngắn khi họ tìm hiểu giới tính thật sự của mình" và "không có một phép thử quỳ tím nào có thể xác định một người là vô tính hay không. Vô tính, như các thiên hướng khác, – at its core, chỉ là một từ người ta dùng nhằm giúp xác định bản thân mình. Nếu tại thời điểm nào đó có ai đó thấy từ vô tính thích hợp để miêu tả mình thì chúng tôi khuyến khích họ sử dụng, chừng nào việc làm đó còn có ít nghĩa."[17]

Một số người vô tính, dù không cảm thấy hấp dẫn tình dục từ bất cứ giới nào vẫn có thể tham gia vào các mối quan hệ lãng mạn thuần túy, trong khi số khác thì không.[9][18][19] Một số xác nhận họ cảm thấy bị hấp dẫn tình dục nhưng không có khuynh hướng thực hiện chúng bởi họ không có ham muốn thực sự hoặc không thấy cần thiết phải tham gia vào. Một số hoàn toàn không có hoạt động tình dục lẫn phi tình dục (âu yếm, nắm tay...), trong khi số khác vẫn tham gia vào các hành vi phi tình dục.[6][11][12][16] Một số hoạt động tình dục chỉ vì tò mò.[6] Một số có thể thủ dâm để bản thân cảm thấy dễ chịu, số khác lại không thấy cần phải làm vậy..[16][20][21]

Nói riêng về hoạt động tình dục, cộng đồng vô tính xem sự cảm thấy cần thiết hoặc muốn thủ dâm là một sex drive, tách bạch khỏi hấp dẫn tình dục và không có nghĩa là có ham muốn; những người vô tính mà thủ dâm thường xem nó như một sản phẩm bình thường của cơ thể chứ không phải là dấu hiệu của bản năng tình dục ngấm ngầm, và một số thậm chí không thấy khoái cảm khi làm việc đấy.[6] Một vài người nam vô tính không thể thực hiện việc xuất tinh và hoạt động tình dục by attempting penetration là không thể đối với họ.[22] Quan điểm của những người vô tính về việc hành vi tính dục cũng khác nhau: một vài không có ý kiến gì và có thể tham gia quan hệ tình dục vì đối tác của mình, số khác lại chống đối dữ dội, mặc dù nói chung họ không ghét những người khác vì việc quan hệ tình dục.[6][16][21]

Concerning romantic or emotional aspects of sexual orientation or sexual identity, asexuals may identify as heterosexual, lesbian, gay, bisexual, queer,[17][18] hoặc bằng những term sau để nhấn mạnh tới khía cạnh lãng mạn trong các mối quan hệ của họ vì tính dục của các thiên hướng tình dục:[16][18]

  • aromantic; không cảm thấy lack of romantic attraction towards anyone
  • biromantic; đối với lưỡng tính
  • heteroromantic; đối với dị tính
  • homoromantic; đối với homosexual
  • panromantic; đối với pansexual

People may also identify as a gray-A (such as a gray-romantic, demiromantic, demisexual or semisexual) because they feel that they are between being aromantic and non-aromantic, or between asexuality and sexual attraction. While the term gray-A may cover anyone who occasionally feels romantic or sexual attraction, demisexuals or semisexuals experience sexual attraction only as a secondary component, feeling sexual attraction once a reasonably stable or large emotional connection has been created.[16][23]

Research[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Prevalence[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Asexuality is not a new aspect of human sexuality, but it is relatively new to public discourse.[24] SE Smith of The Guardian is not sure asexuality has actually increased, rather leaning towards the belief that it is simply more visible.[24] In the mid-twentieth century, Alfred Kinsey rated individuals from 0 to 6 according to their sexual orientation from heterosexual to homosexual, known as the Kinsey scale. He also included a category he called "X" for individuals with "no socio-sexual contacts or reactions";[25][26] in modern times, this is categorized as representing asexuality.[27] Kinsey labeled 1.5% of the adult male population as X.[25][26] In his second book, Sexual Behavior in the Human Female, he reported this breakdown of individuals who are X: unmarried females = 14–19%, married females = 1–3%, previously married females = 5–8%, unmarried males = 3–4%, married males = 0%, and previously married males = 1–2%.[26]

Further empirical data about an asexual demographic appeared in 1994, when a research team in the United Kingdom carried out a comprehensive survey of 18,876 British residents, spurred by the need for sexual information in the wake of the AIDS pandemic. The survey included a question on sexual attraction, to which 1.05% of the respondents replied that they had "never felt sexually attracted to anyone at all".[28] The study of this phenomenon was continued by the Canadian sexuality researcher Anthony Bogaert in 2004, who explored the asexual demographic in a series of studies. Bogaert believed that the 1% figure was not an accurate reflection of the likely much larger percentage of the population that could be identified as asexual, noting that 30% of people contacted for the initial survey chose not to participate in the survey. Since less sexually experienced people are more likely to refuse to participate in studies about sexuality, and asexuals tend to be less sexually experienced than sexuals, it is likely that asexuals were under-represented in the responding participants. The same study found the number of homosexuals and bisexuals combined to be about 1.1% of the population, which is much smaller than other studies indicate.[4][7]

In contrast to Bogaert's suggestion in 2004 of a higher percentage, a study by Aicken et al., published in 2013, suggests that, based on Natsal-2 data from 2000-2001, the prevalence of asexuality in Britain is only 0.4% for people between the ages of 16-44.[29] This percentage indicates a decrease from the 0.9% figure determined from the Natsal-1 data collected on the same age-range a decade earlier.[29] Bogaert also found a similar decline between the Natsal-1 and Natsal-2 data.[30] Aicken, Mercer, and Cassell also found some evidence of ethnic differences among respondents who had not experienced sexual attraction; both men and women of Indian and Pakistani origin had a higher likelihood of reporting a lack of sexual attraction.[29] Muslims were also more likely to report this lack of attraction than respondents from Christian religions.[29]

Sexual orientation, mental health and etiology[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

There is significant debate over whether or not asexuality is a sexual orientation.[8][9] It has been compared and equated with hypoactive sexual desire disorder (HSDD), in that both imply a general lack of sexual attraction to anyone; HSDD has been used to medicalize asexuality, but asexuality is generally not considered a disorder or a sexual dysfunction (such as anorgasmia, anhedonia, etc.), because it does not necessarily define someone as having a medical problem or problems relating to others socially.[12][18][31] Unlike people with HSDD, asexual people normally do not experience "marked distress" and "interpersonal difficulty" concerning feelings about their sexuality, or generally a lack of sexual arousal; asexuality is considered the lack or absence of sexual attraction as a life-enduring characteristic.[4][18] One study found that, compared to HSDD subjects, asexuals reported lower levels of sexual desire, sexual experience, sex-related distress and depressive symptoms.[32] Researchers Richards and Barker report that asexuals do not have disproportionate rates of alexithymia, depression, or personality disorders.[18] Some people, however, may identify as asexual even if their non-sexual state is explained by one or more of the aforementioned disorders.[33]

The first study that gave empirical data about asexuals was published in 1983 by Paula Nurius, concerning the relationship between sexual orientation and mental health. Six hundred eighty-nine subjects—most of whom were students at various universities in the United States taking psychology or sociology classes—were given several surveys, including four clinical well-being scales. Results showed that asexuals were more likely to have low self-esteem and more likely to be depressed than members of other sexual orientations; 25.88% of heterosexuals, 26.54% bisexuals (called "ambisexuals"), 29.88% of homosexuals, and 33.57% of asexuals were reported to have problems with self-esteem. A similar trend existed for depression. Nurius did not believe that firm conclusions can be drawn from this for a variety of reasons.[34]

In a 2013 study, Yule et al. looked into mental health variances between Caucasian heterosexuals, homosexuals, bisexuals, and asexuals. The results of 203 male and 603 female participants were included in the findings. Yule et al. found that asexual male participants were more likely to report having a mood disorder than other males, particularly in comparison to the heterosexual participants. The same was found for female asexual participants over their heterosexual counterparts; however, non-asexual, non-heterosexual females had the highest rates. Asexual participants of both sexes were more likely to have anxiety disorders than heterosexual and non-heterosexual participants, as were they more likely than heterosexual participants to report having had recent suicidal feelings. Yule et al. hypothesised that some of these differences may be due to discrimination and other societal factors.[35]

With regard to sexual orientation categories, asexuality may be argued as not being a meaningful category to add to the continuum, and instead argued as the lack of a sexual orientation or sexuality.[8] Other arguments propose that asexuality is the denial of one's natural sexuality, and that it is a disorder caused by shame of sexuality, anxiety or sexual abuse, sometimes basing this belief on asexuals who masturbate or occasionally engage in sexual activity simply to please a romantic partner.[8][21][22]

The suggestion that asexuality is a sexual dysfunction is controversial among the asexual community. Those who identify as asexual usually prefer it to be recognized as a sexual orientation.[9][36] Various scholars state that asexuality is a sexual orientation, as some asexuals are unable to masturbate even though they reportedly have a normal sex drive, and that there are variations of sexual preferences, arguing that asexuality ought to be included as well.[8][11][22] They state that asexuals do not choose to have no sexual desire, and generally start to find out their differences in sexual behaviors around adolescence. Because of these facts coming to light, it is argued that asexuality is much more than a behavioral choice, and is not something that can be cured like a disorder.[22][37]

Etiology in this context is without implication of disease, disorder, or abnormality.[38][39][40][41] Research on the etiology of sexual orientation when applied to asexuality has the definitional problem of sexual orientation not consistently being defined by researchers as including asexuality.[42] Sexual orientation is defined as "enduring" and resistant to change, proving to be generally impervious to interventions intended to change it.[14] While heterosexuality, homosexuality and bisexuality are usually, but not always, determined during the early years of preadolescent life, it is not known when asexuality is determined. "It is unclear whether these characteristics [viz., "lacking interest in or desire for sex"] are thought to be lifelong, or if they may be acquired."[6] Some studies have suggested that asexuality is linked to biological factors that are determined prenatally or in early childhood. These studies report that asexuals are shorter on average, more likely to be non-right-handed, and have more older brothers (known as the fraternal birth order effect). Correlations with handedness and birth order have also been reported for male homosexuality, possibly indicating that it has a similar origin.[30]

Non-measurement in some areas of sexual orientation is accepted by the American Psychological Association, the American Psychiatric Association, and the National Association of Social Workers: "[S]imply to document that a phenomenon occurs, case studies and non-probability samples are often adequate ... Some groups are sufficiently few in number – relative to the entire population – that locating them with probability sampling is extremely expensive or practically impossible. In the latter cases, the use of non-probability samples is often appropriate."[43] In determining etiologies, when asexuals are a small percentage of a large society, asexuals with a given etiology will compose an even smaller percentage, so that etiological information is available only from some individuals, generally not randomly selected.[44]

Sexual activity and sexuality[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

While some asexuals masturbate as a solitary form of release or have sex for the benefit of a romantic partner, others do not (see above).[6][16][20] The Kinsey Institute sponsored another small survey on the topic in 2007, which found that self-identified asexuals "reported significantly less desire for sex with a partner, lower sexual arousability, and lower sexual excitation but did not differ consistently from non-asexuals in their sexual inhibition scores or their desire to masturbate".[6]

A 1977 paper titled Asexual and Autoerotic Women: Two Invisible Groups, by Myra T. Johnson, may be the first paper explicitly devoted to asexuality in humans. Johnson defines asexuals as those men and women "who, regardless of physical or emotional condition, actual sexual history, and marital status or ideological orientation, seem to prefer not to engage in sexual activity." She contrasts autoerotic women with asexual women: "The asexual woman ... has no sexual desires at all [but] the autoerotic woman ... recognizes such desires but prefers to satisfy them alone." Johnson's evidence is mostly letters to the editor found in women's magazines written by asexual/autoerotic women. She portrays them as invisible, "oppressed by a consensus that they are nonexistent," and left behind by both the sexual revolution and the feminist movement. Society either ignores or denies their existence or insists they must be ascetic for religious reasons, neurotic, or asexual for political reasons.[45]

In a study published in 1979 in Advances in the Study of Affect, vol. 5, and in another article using the same data and published in 1980 in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Michael D. Storms of the University of Kansas outlined his own reimagining of the Kinsey scale. Whereas Kinsey measured sexual orientation based on a combination of actual sexual behavior and fantasizing and eroticism, Storms only used fantasizing and eroticism. Storms, however, placed hetero-eroticism and homo-eroticism on separate axes rather than at two ends of a single scale; this allows for a distinction between bisexuality (exhibiting both hetero- and homo-eroticism in degrees comparable to hetero- or homosexuals, respectively) and asexuality (exhibiting a level of homo-eroticism comparable to a heterosexual and a level of hetero-eroticism comparable to a homosexual, namely, little to none). Storms conjectured that many researchers following Kinsey's model could be mis-categorizing asexual subjects as bisexual, because both were simply defined by a lack of preference for gender in sexual partners.[46][47]

In a 1983 study by Paula Nurius, which included six hundred eighty-nine subjects (most of whom were students at various universities in the United States taking psychology or sociology classes), the two-dimensional fantasizing and eroticism scale was used to measure sexual orientation. Based on the results, respondents were given a score ranging from 0 to 100 for hetero-eroticism and from 0 to 100 for homo-eroticism. Respondents who scored lower than 10 on both were labeled "asexual." This consisted of 5% of the males and 10% of the females. Results showed that asexuals reported much lower frequency and desired frequency of a variety of sexual activities including having multiple partners, anal sexual activities, having sexual encounters in a variety of locations, and autoerotic activities.[34]

In some other sexually reproducing species, a portion of animals exhibit no sexual interest in either sex, and could be considered asexual.[30] Rodent studies use the label duds for rodents which express no sexual interest.[30] A series of studies on ram mating preferences found that 12.5% showed no interest in mating with either sex; the researchers termed these animals asexual.[30] The asexual rams did not differ from sexual rams in measured hormone levels.[48][49]

Feminist research[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

A 2010 paper written by Karli June Cerankowski and Megan Milks, titled New Orientations: Asexuality and Its Implications for Theory and Practice, suggests that asexuality may be somewhat of a question in itself for the studies of gender and sexuality.[50] Cerankowski and Milks have suggested that asexuality raises many more questions than it resolves, such as how a person could abstain from having sex, which is generally accepted by society to be the most basic of instincts. The article also states that society has deemed "[LGBT and] female sexuality as empowered or repressed. The asexual movement challenges that assumption by challenging many of the basic tenets of pro-sex feminism [in which it is] already defined as repressive or anti-sex sexualities." In addition to accepting self-identification as asexual, the Asexual Visibility and Education Network has formulated asexuality as a biologically-determined orientation. This formula, if dissected scientifically and proven, would support researcher Simon LeVay's blind study of the hypothalamus in gay men, women, and straight men, which indicates that there is a biological difference between straight men and gay men.[51]

In 2014, Cerankowski and Milks edited and published Asexualities: Feminist and Queer Perspectives, a collection of essays intended to explore the politics of asexuality from a feminist and queer perspective. It is broken into the introduction and then six parts: Theorizing Asexuality: New Orientations; The Politics of Asexuality; Visualizing Asexuality in Media Culture; Asexuality and Masculinity; Health, Disability, and Medicalization; and Reading Asexually: Asexual Literary Theory. Each part contains two to three papers on a given aspect of asexuality research. One such paper is written by Ela Przybylo, another name that is becoming common in asexual scholarly literature. Her article, with regard to the Cerankowski and Milks anthology, focuses on accounts by self-identified male asexuals, with a particular focus on the pressures men experience towards having sex in dominant Western discourse and media. Three men living in Southern Ontario, Canada, were interviewed in 2011, and Przybylo admits that the small sample-size means that her findings cannot be generalized to a greater population in terms of representation, and that they are "exploratory and provisional," especially in a field that is still lacking in theorizations.[52] All three interviewees addressed being affected by the stereotype that men have to enjoy and want sex in order to be "real men."[52]

Another of Przybylo's articles, Asexuality and the feminist politics of 'not doing it, was published in 2011, and takes a feminist lens to scientific writings on asexuality. She argues that asexuality is made possible only through the Western context of "sexual, coital, and heterosexual imperatives".[53] She addresses earlier works by Dana Densmore, Valerie Solanas, and Breanne Fahs, who argued for "asexuality and celibacy" as radical feminist political strategies against patriarchy.[53] While Przybylo does make some distinctions between asexuality and celibacy, she considers blurring the lines between the two to be productive for a feminist understanding of the topi.c[53] In 2013, "Producing Facts: Empirical Asexuality and the Scientific Study of Sex." was published in Feminism & Psychology. In it, Przybylo distinguishes between two different stages of asexual research - that of the late 1970s to the early 1990s, which often included a very limited understanding of asexuality, and the more recent revisiting of the subject which she says began with Bogaert's 2004 study (see above) and has popularized the subject and made it more "culturally visible". In this article, Przybylo once again asserts the understanding of asexuality as a cultural phenomenon, and continues to be critical of its scientific study.[54]

C.J. DeLuzio Chasin states in Reconsidering Asexuality and Its Radical Potential that academic research on asexuality "has positioned asexuality in line with essentialist discourses of sexual orientation" which is troublesome as it creates a binary between asexuals and persons who have been subjected to psychiatric intervention for disorders such as Hypoactive Sexual Desire Disorder.[31] She says that this binary implies that all asexuals experience a lifelong (hence, enduring) lack of sexual attraction, that all non-asexuals who experience a lack of sexual desire experience distress over it, and that it pathologizes asexuals who do experience such distress.[31] As Chasin says such diagnoses as HSDD act to medicalize and govern women's sexuality, the article aims to "unpack" problematic definitions of asexuality that are harmful to both asexuals and women alike. Chasin states that asexuality has the power to challenge commonplace discourse of the naturalness of sexuality, but that the unquestioned acceptance of its current definition does not allow for this.

Bogaert's psychological work and theories[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

In a 2015 volume of The Journal of Sex Research, Bogaert argued that understanding asexuality is of key importance to understanding sexuality in general.[30] For his work, Bogaert defines asexuality as "a lack of lustful inclinations/feelings directed toward others," a definition that he argues is relatively new in light of recent theory and empirical work on sexual orientation. This definition of asexuality also makes clear this distinction between behavior and desire, for both asexuality and celibacy, although Bogaert also notes that there is some evidence of reduced sexual activity for those who fit this definition. He further distinguishes between desire for others and desire for sexual stimulation, the latter of which is not always absent for those who identify as asexual, although he acknowledges that other theorists define asexuality differently and that further research needs to be done on the "complex relationship between attraction and desire".[30] Another distinction is made between romantic and sexual attraction, and he draws on work from developmental psychology, which suggests that romantic systems derive from attachment theory while sexual systems "primarily reside in different brain structures".[30]

Concurrent with Bogaert's suggestion that understanding asexuality will lead to a better understanding of sexuality overall, he discusses the topic of asexual masturbation to theorize on asexuals and "'target-oriented' paraphilia, in which there is an inversion, reversal, or disconnection between the self and the typical target/object of sexual interest/attraction" (such as attraction to oneself, labelled "automonosexualism").[30]

In an earlier 2006 article, Bogaert acknowledges that a distinction between behavior and attraction has been accepted into recent conceptualizations of sexual orientation, which aids in positioning asexuality as such.[55] He adds that, by this framework, "(subjective) sexual attraction is the psychological core of sexual orientation", and also addresses that there may be "some skepticism in [both] the academic and clinical communities" about classifying asexuality as a sexual orientation, and that it raises two objections to such a classification: First, he suggests that there could be an issue with self-reporting (i.e., "a 'perceived' or 'reported' lack of attraction," particularly for definitions of sexual orientation that consider physical arousal over subjective attraction), and, second, he raises the issue of overlap between absent and very low sexual desire, as those with an extremely low desire may still have an "underlying sexual orientation" despite potentially identifying as asexual.[55]

Community[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Bản mẫu:LGBT symbols

A commonly used asexual pride flag
The aromantic flag, used by those who do not experience romantic attraction.

A community of self-identified asexuals coalesced in the early 21st century, aided by the popularity of online communities.[20] Elizabeth Abbott, author of A History of Celibacy, acknowledges a difference between asexuality and celibacy, and posits that there has always been an asexual element in the population but that asexual people kept a low profile. While the failure to consummate marriage was seen as "an insult to the sacrament of marriage" in medieval Europe, and has sometimes been used as grounds for divorce or to rule a marriage void, asexuality, unlike homosexuality, has never been illegal, and asexual people have usually been able to "fly under the radar". However, in the 21st century, the anonymity of online communication and general popularity of social networking online has facilitated the formation of a community built around a common asexual identity.[56]

The Asexual Visibility and Education Network (AVEN) is an organization founded by American asexuality activist David Jay in 2001 that focuses on asexuality issues.[9][15][57] Its stated goals are "creating public acceptance and discussion of asexuality and facilitating the growth of an asexual community".[57] Communities such as AVEN can be beneficial to those in search of answers to solve a crisis of identity with regard to their possible asexuality. Individuals go through a series of emotional processes that end with their identifying with the asexual community. They first realize that their sexual attractions differ from those of most of society. This difference leads to questioning whether the way they feel is acceptable, and possible reasons for why they feel this way. Pathological beliefs tend to follow, in which, in some cases, they may seek medical help because they feel they have a disease. Self-understanding is usually reached when they find a definition that matches their feelings. Asexuality communities provide support and information that allows newly identified asexuals to move from self-clarification to identifying on a communal level, which can be empowering, because they now have something to associate with, which gives normality to this overall socially-isolating situation.[58]

At this time, asexual organizations and other Internet resources play a key role in informing people about asexuality. The lack of research makes it difficult for doctors to understand the causation. Most people who say they are asexual are self-identified. This can be a problem when asexuality is mistaken for an intimacy or relationship problem or for other symptoms that do not define asexuality. There is also a significant population that either does not understand or does not believe in asexuality, which adds to the importance of these organizations to inform the general population; however, due to the lack of scientific fact on the subject, what these groups promote as information is often questioned.

On June 29, 2014, AVEN organised the second International Asexuality Conference, as an affiliate WorldPride event in Toronto. The event, which was attended by around 250 people, was the largest gathering of asexuals to date.[59] The conference included presentations, discussions, and workshops on topics such as research on asexuality, asexual relationships, and intersecting identities.

Some members of the asexual community opt to wear a black ring on the middle finger of their right hand as a form of identification.[60]

Symbols[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Bài chi tiết: LGBT symbols
In 2009, AVEN members participated in the first asexual entry into an American pride parade when they walked in the San Francisco Pride Parade.[61] In August 2010, after a period of debate over having an asexual flag and how to set up a system to create one, and contacting as many asexual communities as possible, a flag was announced as the asexual pride flag by one of the teams involved. The final flag had been a popular candidate and had previously seen use in online forums outside of AVEN. The final vote was held on a survey system outside of AVEN where the main flag creation efforts were organized. The flag colors have been used in artwork and referenced in articles about the sexuality.[62]

Discrimination and legal protections[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Asexuals marching

A 2012 study published in Group Processes & Intergroup Relations reports there is more prejudice, dehumanizationdiscrimination toward asexuals than toward other sexual minorities, such as gay men, lesbians and bisexuals. Both homosexual and heterosexual people thought of asexuals as not only cold, but also animalistic and unrestrained.[63] Asexual activist, author, and blogger Julie Decker has observed that sexual harassment and violence, such as corrective rape, commonly victimizes the asexual community.[64] However, a different study found little evidence of serious discrimination against asexuals because of their asexuality.[65] Sociologist Mark Karrigan sees a middle ground, claiming that while asexuals do often experience discrimination, it is not of a phobic nature but "more about marginalization because people genuinely don't understand asexuality."[66]

Asexuals also face prejudice from within the LGBT community. Upon coming out as asexual, activist Sara Beth Brooks was told by many LGBT people that asexuals are mistaken in their self-identification and seek undeserved attention within the social justice movement.[64]

In some jurisdictions, asexuals have legal protections. While Brazil bans since 1999 whatever pathologization or attempted treatment of sexual orientation by mental health professionals through the national ethical code,[67][68] the U.S. state of New York has labeled asexuals as a protected class.[69] However, asexuality does not typically attract the attention of the public or major scrutiny; therefore, it has not been the subject of legislation as much as other sexual orientations have.[7]

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  3. ^ Harris, Lynn (26 tháng 5 năm 2005). “Asexual and proud!”. Salon. Truy cập ngày 3 tháng 12 năm 2011. 
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    Cited from: Kelly, Gary F. (2004). Sexuality Today: The Human Perspective (ấn bản 7). McGraw-Hill. tr. 401. ISBN 978-0-07-255835-7. 
  38. ^ In Webster's Third (Merriam-Webster), etiology is defined both with and without reference to disease. The word is defined as "a science or doctrine of causation or of the demonstration of causes" and as "a branch of science dealing with the causes of particular phenomena", thus without implying disease or abnormality. However, it is also defined as "all the factors that contribute to the occurrence of a disease or abnormal condition". Webster's Third New International Dictionary of the English Language Unabridged ([prob. Springfield, Mass.:] G. & C. Merriam (Merriam-Webster), 1966), entry etiology.
  39. ^ In the Shorter Oxford Eng. Dict. ([4th] ed.), etiology is defined both with and without reference to disease. The word is defined as "[t]he assignment of a cause", as "the cause assigned", and, as now rare or obsolete, as "[t]he philosophy of causation; the part of a science which treats of the causes of its phenomena". However, it is also defined in medicine as "[t]he causation of disease (usu., of a specified disease), esp. as a subject for investigation". The New Shorter Oxford English Dictionary: On Historical Principles (Oxford: Clarendon Press, [4th] ed. 1993 (ISBN 0-19-861271-0)), entry aetiology, via entry etiology.
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  67. ^ Homosexuality is not deviant - Federal Council of Psychologists of Brazil (tiếng Bồ Đào Nha)
  68. ^ Psychiatrist Jairo Bouer talks about the "collateral effects" of "gay cure" bill (tiếng Bồ Đào Nha)
  69. ^ The Sexual Orientation Non-Discrimination Act ("SONDA") (State of N.Y., Office of the Attorney General, Civil Rights Bureau, 2008) (possibly written after stated copyright date, Attorney General being stated as Eric T. Schneiderman)

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External links[sửa | sửa mã nguồn]

Nuvola apps kaboodle.svg Video
A fictional film about asexuality at Amazon Studios
Nuvola apps kaboodle.svg Antisex: No Sex and the City