Portal:Human sexuality

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Welcome to the human sexuality portal

Human sexuality is the way people experience and express themselves sexually. This involves biological, erotic, physical, emotional, social, or spiritual feelings and behaviors. Because it is a broad term, which has varied with historical contexts over time, it lacks a precise definition. The biological and physical aspects of sexuality largely concern the human reproductive functions, including the human sexual response cycle.

Someone's sexual orientation is their pattern of sexual interest in the opposite or same sex. Physical and emotional aspects of sexuality include bonds between individuals that are expressed through profound feelings or physical manifestations of love, trust, and care. Social aspects deal with the effects of human society on one's sexuality, while spirituality concerns an individual's spiritual connection with others. Sexuality also affects and is affected by cultural, political, legal, philosophical, moral, ethical, and religious aspects of life.

Interest in sexual activity typically increases when an individual reaches puberty. Although no single theory on the cause of sexual orientation has yet gained widespread support, there is considerably more evidence supporting nonsocial causes of sexual orientation than social ones, especially for males. Hypothesized social causes are supported by only weak evidence, distorted by numerous confounding factors. This is further supported by cross-cultural evidence, because cultures that are very tolerant of homosexuality do not have significantly higher rates of it.

Evolutionary perspectives on human coupling, reproduction and reproduction strategies, and social learning theory provide further views of sexuality. Sociocultural aspects of sexuality include historical developments and religious beliefs. Some cultures have been described as sexually repressive. The study of sexuality also includes human identity within social groups, sexually transmitted infections (STIs/STDs), and birth control methods.

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Sexual orientation is an enduring personal quality that inclines people to feel romantic or sexual attraction (or a combination of these) to persons of the opposite sex or gender, the same sex or gender, or to both sexes or more than one gender. These attractions are generally subsumed under heterosexuality, homosexuality, and bisexuality, while asexuality (the lack of sexual attraction to others) is sometimes identified as the fourth category. These categories are aspects of the more nuanced nature of sexual identity. For example, people may use other labels, such as pansexual or polysexual, or none at all. According to the American Psychological Association, sexual orientation "also refers to a person's sense of identity based on those attractions, related behaviors, and membership in a community of others who share those attractions".

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Large wooden phallic symbols, Japan, as used in the Hōnen Matsuri fertility festival
Large wooden phallic symbols, Japan, as used in the Hōnen Matsuri fertility festival

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Fanny Murray

January - March 2013

Human sexuality in the news

21 October 2020 –
Pope Francis says he supports civil unions for same-sex couples. (NBC News)
18 October 2020 –
The Hay Festival announces it will cease hosting festivities in Abu Dhabi unless Emirati minister Sheikh Nahyan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan resigns. Yesterday he was accused of sexually assaulting a female British curator last February. (BBC)
15 October 2020 – Capital punishment in Bangladesh
A court in Bangladesh sentences five men to death for the gang rape of a girl in 2012. The verdict comes amidst public outcry regarding growing sexual violence. It was the first conviction since the government this week introduced the death penalty for rape. (Al Jazeera)
12 October 2020 – Capital punishment in Bangladesh
Bangladesh plans to introduce the death penalty for rape, following days of protests about the country's high level of sexual violence against women. (BBC)

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For editor resources and to collaborate with other editors on improving Wikipedia's Human sexuality-related articles, see WikiProject Sexology and sexuality.

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