Fluidity in Women's Sexuality

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Date

2016-08-09

Authors

Johonnot, Karli

Advisors

Gold, Deborah T
Wicker, Kent

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Abstract

Sexual fluidity has been proposed as a key component of women’s sexuality. However, not all women acknowledge or experience fluidity in their sexual attractions and behaviors. Because this is the case, what proportion of women are experiencing sexual fluidity? Research has concluded that a “sizeable minority” of women are experiencing sexual fluidity, with the highest levels found among those that identify as a sexual minority. Furthermore, certain individual differences have been found to be associated with a heightened (or weakened) likelihood of experiencing or embracing sexual fluidity. Through extensive literature reviews on women’s sexuality and sexual fluidity, it has been concluded that sexual orientation identity status, as well as psychological, biological, and social factors, all play roles in the expression or degree of sexual fluidity experienced. This means that certain personal and environmental factors have the ability to both hinder and/or nurture fluidity in a woman’s sexual attractions, behaviors, and experiences. Accepting that women’s sexuality is fluid and teaching about the variability sometimes observed in women’s sexuality allows us to not only see that experiencing same-sex attractions, desires, or experiences is not necessarily abnormal, but also that it may be more common than originally assumed, which has the potential to reduce societal stigma associated with homosexuality.

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Citation

Johonnot, Karli (2016). Fluidity in Women's Sexuality. Master's thesis, Duke University. Retrieved from https://hdl.handle.net/10161/12633.


Dukes student scholarship is made available to the public using a Creative Commons Attribution / Non-commercial / No derivative (CC-BY-NC-ND) license.