For example, in his book Studies in the Psychology of Sex: Sexual Inversion
, Havelock Ellis wrote that "among lower races homosexual practices are regarded with considerable indifference, and the real invert [or deviant man], if he exists among them, as doubtless he does exist, generally passes unperceived or joins some sacred caste which sanctifies his exclusively homosexual inclinations" (1901, 13).
(1897) and from Studies in the psychology of sex: Vol.
Carpenter, in particular, became well-known in early-twentieth-century British intellectual circles for calmly explaining sexual inversion
, a prominent formulation of same-sex desire, by detailing the spectrum of biological sex and gender characteristics within the general population.
During this time period scholars went from using a "sexual inversion
model"--which referred to deviant gender behavior, including but not limited to same-sex relationships--to using a model of "homosexuality"--which focused on sexual object choice.
Like Freud, most of the German sexologists, including Lowenfeld, Ulrichs, Hirschfeld, Bloch, and Rohleder rejected the conception of sexual inversion
A final chapter addresses issues of sexuality, suggesting an interesting link between the notion of sexual inversion
and image inversion in photographic processes.
I recently reread Havelock Ellis's 1897 Sexual Inversion
in preparation for writing this essay.
This essay explores Hemingway's possible influence on We Too Are Drifting (1935), a now forgotten lesbian novel by Gale Wilhelm, and then examines how both authors engaged with contemporary scientific arguments about the origin of homosexuality, specifically the early 20th century psychological concept of "sexual inversion
" Wilhelm's style and tropes evoke Hemingway's, while both authors use "twinness" as a vehicle to explore sexuality and sexual identity in different ways.
In the 1927 or third edition of Sexual Inversion
, which is the second of the ultimately six volumes and the one first written and published, he remarks:
In this way, Canaday focuses on areas of state growth as these went hand in hand with surveillance of sexual or gender deviance such as "sexual inversion
" to police the new immigrants at the turn of the last century.
For example, David Halperin, relying on the work of the historian George Chauncey, points out that the scientific and medical professions in Western countries during the first half of the nineteenth century viewed same-sex sexual acts as a manifestation of "sexual inversion
," a categorization of sexual deviance without a clear correlation to what we today consider to constitute homosexuality.
The story has been read as an important early expression of emergent ideas of sexual inversion
, in which nonnormative sexuality is understood in terms of one sex taking on the gender identity of the other--as illustrated by stereotypes of the mannish lesbian or effeminate male homosexual.