Gender Fluidity Literature Review

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CHAPTER TWO: LITERATURE REVIEW

Sexual fluidity and gender fluidity are relatively unfamiliar terms, therefore in this review the author will summarize some of the main studies on the fluidity of sexual and gender identity. This literature review aims to highlight some of the common misunderstandings in relation to sexuality and gender identity. The justification against doing this is to show that identity is not binary or fixed but can include multiplicities and individuals can experience fluidity in attractions or in their self-identity.

2.1 What is Gender Fluidity?

Queer theory has defined the differences between sex, gender and desire (Seidman, J., 2005). While sexuality refers to the act of sexual behaviour, the sexuality or sexual orientation refers to “the aspects of identity, lifestyle and community associated with these activities” (Fulcher and Scott, 2011, p. 151). It is argued by some sociologists that sexual orientation is not a biological given,
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Many surveys have been conducted in recent times on sexual attraction in both men and women, data from the U.S. National Survey of Family Growth (2011) indicated that 14 % of adult women and 8% of men report some element of same-gender attraction. While a more recent survey carried out in Ireland by The Irish Times shows that sexuality is open to change and that women are more likely to experience sexual fluidity than men (The Irish Times Sex Survey, 2015). In her book Gender and Sexuality, Mackinnon argues that sexuality is central to feminism, saying that “sexuality is to feminism what work is to Marxism” (Mackinnon, p.57). According to Butler (1990), we have taken for granted that female liberation means women are now free to construct their own sexual identity, when hegemonic powers still exist, she

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