In the simplest terms, sexuality can be defined as the quality or state of being sexual. It is that condition of being distinguished or characterized by sex. It concerns itself significantly with the interest of being sexually active, sexual character or potency (Aggleton, Boyce, & Moore, 2012). Sexuality is an aspect of one’s desire for closeness, tender, touch, love and care. The current transformations in socio-economic and political sectors have greatly influenced sexuality. The world has shrunk into a kind of global village, and people have been brought close by the social networks. This has transformed the fields of economy, politics and society in general. The aim of this paper is to examine the implications of the transformations in economics, social and political fields on sexuality. While looking at the contemporary society, globalization comes to mind. Whether in culture, economy, society the world over, globalization always plays a huge role (Parker & Aggleton, 2007). The modern day society is different from the previous. Today’s generation is computerized. Issues of teleconferencing, telecommuting and videoconferencing, are on the increase. These provide avenues for people to discuss sexuality and share diverse views on the same. The effects on these whether politically, socially or economically are positive and negative. Sexuality in the modern day brings with it great merits as well as posing new challenges that need to be addressed.
Role of globalization on sexuality
Globalization may be defined as the process of international integration that arises from the interchange of world’s views, ideas, products and other significant forms of culture. It promotes the interchange of the international cultural and social resources. Sexuality is a major cultural aspect that is influenced by the modern day globalization (Binnie, 2004). The global trends have led to a significant exchange of diverse views on sexuality. The four areas of globalization: trade and transactions, migration and movements of people, capital investments and dissemination of knowledge all have been potential factors that have implicated on sexuality. With the continuing globalization bringing different people with different views on sexuality together, it is highly likely that sexuality will further get influenced. Globalization has, therefore, implicated significantly on sexuality changing the various societal values, norms, beliefs, and customs. In some places, the social fabrics have been broken. The kind of life that people used to live is no longer what it used to be. Privacy has been threatened a great deal.
Globalization has been brought about by the inventions and innovations in the new information and communication technologies. With these inventions, different people from across the globe have been brought together especially through the social networks such as twitter, facebook and others. This has made it possible and easy for people of diverse cultures to share their views on sexuality, transforming it a great deal (Altman, 2002).
Most cultures have held conservative views on sexuality for a long time. It was a subject that was not to be discussed in public. For many societies sexuality was considered sacred and something that was not to be talked about especially by people who were not of age. It was a taboo to share views on issues regarding sexuality. In fact, for many people, sex was only meant for reproduction. However, with the globalization this has tremendously changed. On the social media, internet, and other media, issues of sexuality are a common place. Globalization has changed the society’s values on sexuality.
On other media including advertisements, sexual content is almost always witnessed. It is not surprising that pictures of beautiful ladies half naked are exposed. This is thought to attract a wide audience. Before globalization, such issues were unheard of. The society was held together by what was considered virtues. People were expected to hold such virtues. Today, more than ever, people of almost all ages spend time on the internet, watching movies, reading content that is mostly driven by sex. This has led to early sexual orientation among children from very tender ages. They get to become very sexually active while still young (Lindio-McGovern & Wallimann, 2009).
Social transformation and implication on sexuality
The world’s social scene has witnessed significant transformation in the modern day. The contemporary society has seen a lot of social activities taking place more than was ever the case. Meeting places such as clubs, big bars, hotels and restaurants have been redefined. These converging places see people from different walks of life meet and share their ideas and more especially on sexuality. Socialization is enhanced by such meetings. Previously, the kind of remote meetings that are witnessed today were never known (Keim, 2010). Besides, people were limited by technology and infrastructure. Road networks were not adequate enough to facilitate such meetings. Travelling by air was not as revolutionized as it is today. As such, people’s views on sexuality could not spread as they do today. Again, while meeting at these restaurants as people drink and chat, a lot of sexual activity goes on. They get close to others and exploit the opportunities to discuss and even practice their sexual views and activities.
In churches and other meeting places, at weddings, social ceremonies and events, people are brought together. They take the opportunity to familiarize and share their thoughts significantly. One thing that rarely misses in such discussions is sexuality. It forms a significant basis for such discussions. The social scene has been transformed a lot by the contemporary practices of sexuality.
In some areas, the society is believed to be disintegrating owing to the changes that have witnessed sexuality. The social values that used to hold the society together are breaking down, and the rate of this breakdown and crumble is so first and significant that the conservatives fear a crumbled future (Koch, McMillan, & Peper, 2011).
The social networks are also very fundamental aspects of the transformation of the sexual scene. There is a lot of sexual content on the social media. Issues of electronic dating are not strange anymore. There are many people across the globe who have used the social media to find life partners. Some of the marriages founded on this have stood the test of time. It is, therefore, very important at this point to note that the implications of the social transformations in the contemporary society have not been only on the negative side. There are other positive sides that have resulted from it.
The transformations in the social scene and specifically on sexuality have also contributed a great deal to offering entertainments that have seen the lives of people and their general happiness uplifted a great deal. As much as it may be argued that the sexual content that is aired on the media and advertised on the internet is bad, ugly and unwelcome to a society that aspires to ensure sustainable social development, this may not entirely be the case. It is true that when these events are encountered by responsible members of the society who are of age, there is little harm that they can contribute if at all. Sexuality is a very important aspect of every human’s life, and it is important that every individual exploits it. However, it should be guided by responsibility and desire to find happiness and not harm others (Hearn, 2000). For responsible adults, therefore, these transformations that have visited the sexual scene should not be condemned. Instead, they should be embraced, accepted and appreciated by the society. These aspects can be used to make people even better members of the society.
The transformations in the social facets, however, have had bad implications on children who have become sexually active as a result of the constant and continuous encounter with the sexual content especially on the internet. The results of these have been very devastating. Adolescent’s pregnancies have, therefore, been on the increase as a result of the increasing sexual activity brought about by sexuality. This is an issue that ought to be addressed. Parents ought to take a leading role in guiding their young ones into paths that should make them better and useful members of the society. The transformations in the social field should be channeled to addressing the challenges associated with its repercussions on sexuality. It should be used to make sexuality a better aspect of the society just as it was naturally designed to be. Otherwise, there is likely to be more crumbles and disintegration of the social fabrics that hold the society together.
Economic transformation and its implications on sexuality
The contemporary society has witnessed a lot of changes on economic activities. The manner in which people conduct businesses has been transformed. Trade has been redefined. With the improvement in the transport sector, international trade has been made possible. Access to goods and services from virtually all parts of the globe has been greatly facilitated. While people conduct such activities, they come into contact with new people from different cultural backgrounds. In the meetings, they get to share their views on sexuality. As a result, sexuality has become an almost universal thing.
The various economic activities that people conduct on a daily basis have, therefore, had implications on sexuality. These, again can be positive or negative. It is possible that as these traders exchange goods internationally and also exchange their views, they can end up getting partners.
The contemporary society has also seen various sexual activities in many areas. Commercial sex workers have been seen in the world’s major towns and cities. These were not known before. In fact in some places, the commercial sex has been legalized and is used as a very important income generation activity. The issue of commercial sex is a contentious issue with religious leaders strongly opposing it. The conservative members of the society have expressed discontent with this kind of activity. The argument is that this decays the morality of the society. Besides, the people who constantly engage in commercial sex risk contracting potential sexually transmitted infections such as HIV/AIDS, Syphilis and others that are life threatening and are likely to lead to significant loss of lives of useful members of the society. The concerns expressed by the portion of the society including the clergy and those expressing reservations for such activities are justified (Aslanbegui & Pressman, 1994). The commercial sex work goes against the norms, values, virtues, and expectations of an ideal society. As a result, many people have considered it a societal evil, a vise, something that should not be encouraged. It has been condemned a lot by many people and unwelcome.
It could also be argued that many people have found a living out of the commercial sex works that they do. It is hard to state just how much happiness and sense of fulfillment they obtain from their job. However, one certain thing is that the business has been used as a poverty reduction strategy in some places. It has uplifted the living standards of some members of the society who get involved in it.
Another effect of economic activities on sexuality arises as a result of the economic adverts that feature on the mass media including the televisions, newspapers, magazines, films and cinemas and the internet. Most of the advertisements usually feature a lot of sexual content. The roles of sexuality in persuading people to buying certain items have been realized. Terms such as “cute” and “sexy” products have become a common scenario. In fact, some adverts have shapes of reproductive organs. Churches and individuals have argued that this is not a societal good since it encourages immorality. Images of beautiful ladies exposing the vital reproductive organs such as the breasts have been incorporated in many adverts, and it has been intimated that these adverts attract a large number of audience.
Again, as people conduct business and other economic activities, they constantly move and interact with others. They get to share their views on sexuality. They can equally end up with partners. The advantage is that this is potentially able to make them sexually active. Sexual activity is not a demerit; it is something that ought to be encouraged rather than condemned as some people do. Sex is not a social evil; it is a basic need of any human being just like food, clothing and shelter. However, it ought to be conducted with responsibility. This is because if care is not taken, then those practicing it are at risk of contracting deadly diseases and breaking up with families in case they are already married.
Political transformations and sexuality
It is hard to imagine that even the contemporary transformations in politics have impacted on sexuality. However, it is true that the changes that have lately occurred in politics have had tremendous implications on this sensitive issue. Today, more than ever known before, politics has taken a whole new dimension. Political campaigns have taken a different platform. Social media is used to conduct political campaigns and fundraisings for politicians. Political meetings have brought people together to share views and ideas on virtually all subjects. At political rallies widely advertised on the mass media and attracting massive audiences, men and women have found ideal meeting places and used the platform to discuss different views on sexuality (Carver & Mottier, 1998). The implication is changed opinions and views on sexuality especially after listening to the other people’s views.
The contemporary politics have also seen many conservatives change their views on sexuality. People no longer take the rigid stand that they used to take before on such issues. The privacy with which sexuality was held is a thing of the past. Politics has greatly changed the perceptions of people on matters of sexuality. On matters of political positions in the government, there have been changes in politics with several bills in parliament aiming to consider gender and sexuality while making appointments.
In some countries, laws have been passed that have legalized practices such as commercial sex works. This has had a tremendous impact on sexuality. The effects have been both advantageous and disadvantageous to those involved in such practices and even to the entire society. The contemporary politics shape the way people conduct themselves. Constitutions have been written and rewritten. In the document, matters of sexuality often feature. Issues of gender, privacy and sexuality are given considerations while drafting the laws. As such violations of a person’s sexual or private rights in many countries can attract long jail terms or huge fines.
Sexuality is by law protected. Sexual assault such as rape, defilement, sodomy, indecent assault, or generally knowing an individual’s canal knowledge without his/her consent is, therefore, greatly discouraged. This is a role of politics. Therefore, it should not at any time be argued that politics has got nothing to do with sexuality. It is politics that prescribes how the society is governed. The social values may prescribe the cultures, norms and standards of behavior among the members of the society. However, all these come to nothing if they are not reinforced by a body of politics. It is politics that ensures that such societal norms are practiced by all and sundry. Underestimating the role and effects of politics on sexuality is, therefore, such a huge omission that ought to be rectified.
The contemporary politics has also addressed the ills that the society has for a long time put on sexuality. Some cultures favored practices such as Female Genital Mutilation. This practice has fundamental negative impacts on the sexuality of the victims. It was designed to reduce the sexual activity of the females as sex was seen as a tool for reproduction and nothing else. Politics have seen bills passed to discourage such cruel practices thereby preserving the sexuality of the potential victims.
In conclusion, it is right to note that the modern day society has seen sexuality implicated by politics, social activities and economic practices. Sexuality is a very important aspect of any individual. Every person desires to be sexually active and happy. The sexual activity and orientation bring about a sense of social happiness and individual fulfillment. The reservations with which certain communities hold sexuality may not be justifiable. This is because sex is a basic human need and should be safeguarded and protected. Scientifically, it has been found out that those who are sexually active experience a greater degree of happiness than those that are not. People, therefore, should not fear exploiting and discovering their sexuality. However, there should be a lot of responsibility with regards to how people conduct themselves in sexuality. This is because there are a lot of diseases and other ills that come with irresponsible sexual behaviors. Parents should be wary of their children getting involved in sexual activities at a tender age since this can result into unwanted pregnancies and diseases that can fundamentally claim their lives putting their future at stake.
Politics, economic activities and social practices should aim at impacting positively on people’s sexuality. The positive impacts that they bring to sexuality should be preserved while the repercussions associated with them should be addressed vehemently. This will see a society where people are enlightened of and are very proud of their sexuality and use it to ensure their happiness and social well being.
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