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Gay, Straight, and In-Between: The Sexology of Erotic Orientation

12 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0195063318
ISBN-10: 0195063317
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Editorial Reviews


"A scholastic masterpiece....The best and most up to date review of the neurobiology of sexual orientation in print....This book should be required reading for all psychiatrists and is strongly recommended for all physicians who will be caring for gay and bisexual men with AIDS in the years to come." --Newsletter of the Psychiatric Medical Association of New Mexico

"An internationally recognized expert on problems of gender identity, Money examines the cultural, physiological, and personal history factors that determine sexual orientation and its disorders . . . . His discussion of the development of 'lovemaps' (the picture one has of the idealized lover or love object) helps explain sexual behavior that otherwise would seem irrational. Illustrative case histories are frequently used. There is an excellent glossary . . . . This is a book for specialists and is recommended for university libraries." --Choice

"The author addresses important scientific and social questions, and it is clear that he has devoted many years of thoughtful attention to them." --Journal of the American Medical Association

About the Author

John Money is Emeritus Professor of Medical Psychology in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences and Emeritus Professor of Pediatrics at The Johns Hopkins Hospital and School of Medicine. He is the author of several books, including Lovemaps and The Destroying Angel.

Product Details

  • Paperback: 288 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (June 7, 1990)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0195063317
  • ISBN-13: 978-0195063318
  • Product Dimensions: 5.4 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,916,563 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 12 people found the following review helpful By Ismenios on June 4, 2005
Format: Paperback
Looking for a book to suggest to a family that has been having trouble understanding, and continuing to love, a gay family member, I had a quick look-around for published materials. I was especially hopeful that there might be an appropriate title by Dr. Milton Diamond, but no such luck. I'll have to hope they'll view his website. That left me with two books that I would very strongly recommend: John Money's Gay, Straight, and In-Between, and Anne Fausto-Sterling's Sexing the Body. Money's book is a straightforward description of how a serious and responsible researcher has come to understand homosexuality over the course of decades of research, but Fausto-Sterling's is a more "nuanced" account of the formation of human sexualities that ruthlessly but with good humor attacks easy assumptions and over-generalizations.

Money objectively synthesizes the work done during his lifetime by numerous researchers in the field of human sexuality. He gives the reader a clear way to understand that the sexual identity of a person, what the person is and is motivated to do as a sexual being, begins with the individual's genetic constitution (which is in all cases almost entirely identical to other human beings), is influenced by the complex hormonal and nutritional environment in the womb during gestation, and then is further molded by nurture and learning -- with early events, generally speaking, being more influential than later events.

Criticisms of Money in the Colapinto book refer to events that occurred early in Money's career, and to an understanding that has been revised and reshaped over the years and the dozen or so books that Money has written to the point that it does Money an injustice to condemn his recent book on that account.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By David Chirko on November 25, 2008
Format: Paperback
John William Money, PhD (1921-2006), New Zealand born psychologist and sexologist, in "Gay, Straight, and In-Between" (1988), investigates sexual orientation, explaining how some find themselves swimming outside of the mainstream.

In the first of this book's four chapters, "Prenatal Hormones and Brain Dimorphism" covers how before birth the neuroendocrine/central nervous systems, endocrine glands and some visceral tissues secrete into the bloodstream chemicals disbursing information to other bodily organs and cells, which, in turn, affect individuals portraying defective characteristics of both sexes after birth.

Second, in "Gender Coding," Money describes what it is collectively hormonal, genetic and social that impacts on one's mind, body and behaviour, causing them in childhood to be--through "identification," behaving like someone else, and "complementation," behaving unlike another person (both applied to G-I/R, gender-identity/role)--totally female, male or androgynous.

Chapter three, "Gender Crosscoding," delves the conflict between one's gender and behaviour, cross-purposed against external genitals, found in, for instance, homophilia, transvestism and transexualism.

Finally, chapter four, "Lovemaps and Paraphilia," the author expounds on mental templates of the brain, which, because of development, represent one's ideal sexual proclivities/partner(s). Some of which are thought of as egregious perversions.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By James L. Park on September 25, 2010
Format: Paperback
John Money
Gay, Straight, and In-Between:
The Sexology of Sexual Orientation

(New York: Oxford UP, 1988) 267 pages

This book brings a truly scientific approach to an area of belief
frequently dominated by partisan and dogmatic theories
held by people who are certain of the 'truth' before the research begins.
Money concludes that the research is still incomplete,
so the question of the origins of homosexuality,
heterosexuality, & bisexuality remains open.
His research concentrates mostly on people
with sexual ambiguity and/or sexual problems.
But understanding these unusual sexual responses
might cast some light on the more common forms of adult sexuality.

This book also deals with the puzzling phenomenon of transsexuals
--people who believe they are the other sex.
Cross-dressing (as a costume for a sex-script
and for other reasons) is also discussed.
No hormonal differences have been discovered
to account for different sex-scripts or sexual fantasies.
More research is needed to uncover the possible relationships among
sex-hormones, male/female self-designation ("I am a boy/girl"),
gender-personality (one's pattern of 'masculinity' or 'femininity'),
& sex-scripts (one's imprinted sexual fantasies).

If you are interested, search the Internet for this bibliography:
"Best Books on Sexual Orientation".

This book is also listed on another Internet bibliography:

James Leonard Park, author of
Imprinted Sexual Fantasies:
A New Key for Sexology.
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