Antisexualism Source: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antisexualism

Antisexualism is opposition or hostility towards sexual behavior and sexuality.[1]


Other terms whose meanings overlap or are synonymous or interchangeable with antisexualism include sex-negativism,[2] sex-negative movement,[3] sex-negativity,[4] antisexuality,[5] demonization of sex[6] or as an adjective, anti-sex or sex-negative.[7][8] In a broader scope, it may refer to a general opposition to sexuality,[9] especially tending to reduce or eliminate the sex drive or sexual activity[10] or a prudish and coitophobic force in society that suppresses sexual freedom and disseminates antisexual opinions.[11][12] When such an aversion involves hatred, it is sometimes called miserotia or miserotism.[13]


Some forms of early ascetic Gnosticism held all matter to be evil, and that unnecessary gratifications of the physical senses were to be avoided. Married couples were encouraged to be chaste.[14][15] The Skoptsys were a radical sect of the Russian Orthodox Church that practiced castration and amputation of sexual organs. The Skoptsy believed that Christ had been castrated during his crucifixion, and it was this castration that brought about salvation.[16] Boston Corbett, who was involved in killing John Wilkes Booth, castrated himself after being mocked and tempted by prostitutes.[17] Ann Lee was the founder of the Shakers, a radical Protestant sect that opposed procreation and all sexual activity. The Shakers were more opposed to pregnancy than anything else.[18][better source needed] Father Divine, founder of the International Peace Mission Movement, advocated religious abstinence from sex and marriage and taught that sexual objectification is a root cause of undesirable social and political conditions.[19]

James Baldwin in The Fire Next Time refers to the United States as an antisexual country dominated by a white culture that regards sensual or soulful behavior by Black Americans as suspect. This contributes to a crisis of Baldwin's Christian faith because it shows that the world does not accept him, and that Christianity has not made white people accepting.[20]


Philosopher Immanuel Kant viewed humans as being subject to the animalistic desires of self-preservation, species-preservation, and the preservation of enjoyment. He argued that humans have a duty to avoid maxims that harm or degrade themselves, including suicide, sexual degradation, and drunkenness.[21] This led Kant to regard sexual intercourse as degrading because it "makes of the loved person an Object of appetite",[22] rather than focusing on their inherent worth as rational beings, which violates Kant's second formulation of the categorical imperative, a philosophical concept he created to judge the morality of actions. He admitted sex only within marriage, which he regarded as "a merely animal union."[23]


Friedrich Nietzsche has many criticisms of Jesus and Christianity. In Human, All Too Human, and Twilight of the Idols for example, Nietzsche accuses the Church's and Jesus' teachings as being anti-natural in their treatment of passions, in particularly sexuality: "There [In the Sermon on the Mount] it is said, for example, with particular reference to sexuality: 'If thy eye offend thee, pluck it out.' Fortunately, no Christian acts in accordance with this precept...[24] the Christian who follows that advice and believes he has killed his sensuality is deceiving himself: it lives on in an uncanny vampire form and torments in repulsive disguises."[25]

Antisexualism drew sharp criticism from Bertrand Russell in his Marriage and Morals:

Westermarck gives many instances of what he calls ‘the curious notion that there is something impure and sinful in ... sexual relations.’ ... It should be said to begin with that it is useless to look to beliefs as the source of this kind of attitude. Beliefs of this sort must be in the first place inspired by a mood; it is true that when once they exist they may perpetuate the mood, or at any rate actions in accordance with the mood, but it is hardly likely that they will be the prime causes of an anti-sexual attitude. The two main causes of such an attitude are, I should say, jealousy and sexual fatigue.

— Bertrand Russell, Marriage and Morals, chapter "PHALLIC WORSHIP, ASCETICISM AND SIN"[26]

According to Bertrand Russell, an anti-sexual attitude must be regarded as purely superstitious and those who first inculcated antisexualism must have suffered from a diseased condition of body or mind, or both (Marriage and Morals, chapter "CHRISTIAN ETHICS").[26]


John Harvey Kellogg, the inventor of the "corn flakes" variety of breakfast cereal, was opposed to all forms of sexual activity, especially masturbation.[27] The Road to Wellville satirized his life and practices.[28] According to some sources, the early Christian theologian Origen castrated himself to avoid temptation and remain pure.[29] Female circumcision may have been developed to discourage women from having sex.


See also[edit]


  1. ^ John Ince (2005), The politics of lust, Prometheus Books, p. 11, ISBN 978-1-59102-278-7, consists of any negative response directed at sex organs or harmless sex expression
  2. ^ Schmit, Timaree (16 May 2017). "Philly collective talks sex-positive resistance in American politics". Archived from the original on 2017-06-06.
  3. ^ "The HIV drug dispute highlights the danger of the conservative case for gay rights". www.newstatesman.com. 2 August 2016. Archived from the original on 2017-12-22.
  4. ^ Rubin, Gayle. "Thinking sex: Notes for a radical theory of the politics of sexuality." Social Perspectives in Lesbian and Gay Studies; A Reader (1984): 100-133.
  5. ^ Berer, Marge. "Sexuality, rights and social justice." Reproductive Health Matters 12.23 (2004): 6-11.
  6. ^ Dillon, M. C. "Sex objects and sexual objectification: Erotic versus pornographic depiction." Journal of Phenomenological Psychology 29.1 (1998): 92-115.
  7. ^ "Another GOP Lawmaker Got Caught In A Sex Scandal. Here's Why You Should Defend Him". 29 November 2017. Archived from the original on 22 December 2017.
  8. ^ Shrage, Laurie. "Exposing the fallacies of anti-porn feminism." Feminist Theory 6.1 (2005): 45-65.
  9. ^ "Definition of "antisexuality"". Collins English Dictionary. Archived from the original on 2012-10-29.
  10. ^ "Definition of ANTISEX". Merriam-Webster. Archived from the original on 2013-01-31.
  11. ^ Gescinska, Alicja A. (2010). "Sex in transition: anti-sexuality and the church in post-communist Poland" (PDF). In Clarke, Gemma; McQueen, Fiona; Pnacekova, Michaela; Sahli, Sabrina (eds.). Examining aspects of sexualities and the self (Conference). Critical Issues. Vol. 121. Oxford, UK: Inter-Disciplinary Press. pp. 87–94. hdl:1854/LU-924760. ISBN 978-1-84888-020-7. 924760. Retrieved March 12, 20136th Global Conference : Sexualities : Bodies, Desires, Practices{{cite book}}: CS1 maint: postscript (link)
  12. ^ Kon, Igor S. "Sexual culture and politics in contemporary Russia". Sexual counter-revolution in Russia. Russia: Fatekh Vergasov's electronic library. Archived from the original on 2012-01-13. Retrieved 2013-03-12. The current anti-sexual crusade is only the top of the iceberg. Under the guise of a moral renaissance, Russian Orthodoxy and its allies are trying to restore censorship and administrative control over private life.
  13. ^ Houdini, I. V., and X. Merlin. "Of Sex and Fear." Word Ways 7.2 (1974): 19.
  14. ^ Sunshine, Glenn S. (2009). Why You Think the Way You Do: The Story of Western Worldviews from Rome to Home. Zondervan. p. 47. ISBN 9780310292302. Archived from the original on 2014-01-05.
  15. ^ See Book of Thomas the Contender, Acts of Thomas; also Spiritual marriage
  16. ^ Friedman, David M. (2008). A Mind of Its Own: A Cultural History of the Penis. Simon & Schuster. pp. 36–37. ISBN 9781439136089. Archived from the original on 2014-01-05.
  17. ^ Tanner, Beccy (2013-02-11). "Boston Corbett moved to Kansas after John Wilkes Booth shooting". The Wichita Eagle. Archived from the original on 2013-10-29.
  18. ^ Gopnik, Adam (2006-02-13). "Shining Tree of Life". The New Yorker. Archived from the original on 2013-12-05.
  19. ^ Watts, Jill (1992). God, Harlem U.S.A.: The Father Divine Story. University of California Press. p. 66. ISBN 9780520916692. All disciples subscribed to Father Divine's teaching that sex was a sin that drained the body of "spiritual energy", making the individual vulnerable to disease and death. Even followers who lived outside 72 Macon Street practiced celibacy.
  20. ^ Baldwin, James (November 9, 1962). "Letter from a Region in My Mind". The New Yorker.
  21. ^ Denis 1999, p. 225.
  22. ^ Kant, Immanuel. Lectures on Ethics, p. 163
  23. ^ Wood 1999, p. 2.
  24. ^ Friedrich Nietzsche, 1895, Twilight of the Idols, Morality as Anti-nature, 1.
  25. ^ Friedrich Nietzsche, 1878, Human all too Human: A Book for Free Spirits, The Wanderer and His Shado, aphorism 83.
  26. ^ a b Marriage And Morals by Bertrand Russell. 1930.
  27. ^ Taormino, Tristan (2004-05-11). "Come for a Cause". The Village Voice. Archived from the original on 2010-09-09.
  28. ^ Hicks, Chris (1994-11-01). "Film review: Road to Wellville, The". Deseret News. Archived from the original on 2015-06-06.
  29. ^ Rothwell, Nicholas (2008-08-23). "The Way of All Flesh". The Australian. Archived from the original on 2014-12-16.
  30. ^ O'Neill, Brendan (2009-05-17). "Inalienable Right to 'Excessively Noisy Sex'". Toronto Star. Archived from the original on 2016-03-04.