Sunday, May 31, 2020

Rational, impartial, benevolent bureaucratic government: Arthur Naftalin, Minneapolis Mayor

"You Can't Legislate the Heart": Minneapolis Mayor Charles Stenvig and the Politics of Law and Order. Jeffrey T. Manuel and Andrew Urban. American Studies, Volum 49, Number 3/4, Fall/Winter 2008.

In addition to maintaining a close connection between the mayor's office and the University of Minnesota, Naftalin's background in the social sciences led him to believe that government could ultimately function as a science, which, theoretically, could be perfected. This belief in the possibilities for rational and scientific governance of the city was evident in his long-range thinking about the possibilities of city government. Naftalin willingly outlined his programs to the press and openly theorized about how government could be improved through scientific reforms. Speculating in 1969 about the possibility of consolidating the fragmented governments in American metropolitan areas into singular, metropolitan-wide entities, Naftalin argued that with "proper computers," a single executive authority could easily—and rationally—control a widely-scattered metropolitan area. For Naftalin, a rational executive would have to make unpopular decisions based on his or her expert knowledge of what was best for the city.

Although evidence in modern humans does not support the prosociality hypothesis of homosexuality, the sociosexuality hypothesis has received notable support

Luoto, S. Did Prosociality Drive the Evolution of Homosexuality? Arch Sex Behav (2020).

Possible evolutionary origins of homosexuality is a topic that has received broad interest in the scientific community. In a recent article, Barron and Hare (2020) argued that same-sex sexual attraction (SSSA) was selected for in recent human evolution because of its “non-conceptive social benefits” in hominids and other primates in which there was strong selection for heightened prosociality and sociosexuality. Barron and Hare pitched this as a new hypothesis but failed to discuss existing work which has proposed and tested similar ideas in various ways. In formulating the prosociality hypothesis, Barron and Hare dismissed other hypotheses that have received broad empirical support, namely gender shift and endocrinological hypotheses of homosexuality. The purpose of this article is to critically discuss Barron and Hare’s prosociality hypothesis in order to help other researchers and the general public to better assess the plausibility and novelty of the prosociality and sociosexuality hypotheses of same-sex sexual attraction and behavior.

Although evidence in modern humans does not support the prosociality hypothesis of homosexuality, the sociosexuality hypothesis has received notable support, especially regarding a gender shift to heightened sociosexuality in nonheterosexual women (Luoto et al., 2019a, b). The biological and evolutionary underpinnings of homosexuality suggest that there are other proximate mechanisms than genetic ones (e.g., endocrinological and neurodevelopmental ones), and other ultimate functions than prosociality, that cause and maintain homosexuality in human and nonhuman animal populations. Current evidence provides little support for the hypothesis that prosociality is one such ultimate evolutionary function.

Check also Prosociality and a Sociosexual Hypothesis for the Evolution of Same-Sex Attraction in Humans. Andrew B. Barron and Brian Hare. Front. Psychol., 16 January 2020.

From 2015... Walking a fine line: Young people negotiate pornified heterosex

From 2015... Walking a fine line: Young people negotiate pornified heterosex. Monique Mulholland. Sexualities, 2015, Vol. 18(5/6) 731–74. DOI: 10.1177/1363460714561721

Abstract: Heteronormal histories have been shaped by a recurring set of debates about what
kinds of explicit sexual expression and representation are publicly allowed, structured
by a form of line-drawing that sanctions certain forms of public heterosexual practice in
popular culture and representation. While depictions of heterosexual activity in popular
cultural representations are tolerated within certain parameters, and while such
parameters around what is possible and acceptable have shifted over time in
Anglophone discourses of sexuality, overtly pornographic depictions are consistently
cast as a non-normative, deviant form of heterosexual expression.
Over the past decade, the emergence of ‘pornified’ culture prompts us to ask new
kinds of questions about heterosexual practice, pointing to some interesting transgressive potentials. What happens when a historically non-normative form of public sexual
expression attains a measure of social acceptability? Does this challenge the historical
signifiers of good heterosex? To explore these questions, this article draws on a study
with young people aged 12–16 in South Australian schools who have some interesting
things to say about the ‘explicit’ in public. They describe an alteration to the historical
relegation of explicit porn sex to secret private spaces, and articulate how pornified
culture works as moments for curious exploration: a fun, fleshy spectacle. However, in
making this claim, I (and they) walk a careful line. The extent to which heterosexual
porn can be a matter of ‘fun’ and experimentation is simultaneously moderated
by historically persistent signifiers of classed and gendered respectability. While the
repertoire for open acknowledgment of certain forms of play and pleasure may be
opening up (perhaps disrupting existing orthodoxies of heteronormativity in some
key ways), heteronormal conventions simultaneously constrain these possibilities.

Keywords: Gender resistance, heteronormativity, pornography, pornification, respectability, young