There are some topics that anthropologists are prone to delve into and emerge hours or dozens of pages later, having expertly destabilized and challenged the consensus definitions, et cetera, without necessarily offering a new definition that can be easily digested by others. This can make it difficult for us when it’s time to introduce said topics to new students–say, in an introductory course. In this short video from the vlogbrothers YouTube channel, the ever-brilliant Hank Green provides a concise and insightful overview of human sexuality– differentiating sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, sexual behavior, and gender roles– while even remaining aware of his own unique experience and the limited perspective that this has afforded him. As with his excellent Crash Course video series, this one features helpful graphs and visual aids to help illustrate his points. I really think that Hank and his brother John offer great examples of the potential for short, informative videos to enhance education. While it’s no substitute for face-to-face discussions (e.g., seminar courses), it can be a powerful tool within lecture courses.
The overall goal of this video, as Hank explains, is to hopefully reduce hate–both between groups as well as self-hatred–by clearing up some of the confusion and lack of understanding of these issues.
“… when the world becomes one of infinite continuums and those false dichotomies break down and those two shiny boxes [masculine male/feminine female] break apart into 7 billion shiny boxes, that’s actually pretty beautiful.”