Re: The evolutionary function and origin of asexuality
Leif Ekblad: I've seen many threads discussing sexuality, mostly in the most common form of sexual intercourse. The evolutionary function of sexual intercourse is pretty easy to understand as it is reproduction, but what about the evolutionary function and origin of asexuality? Is there a model for that (to use JKs words), and if so, what does the model say about it?
Jay R. Feierman: Hi Leif. There is a model for asexuality. However, you should not presume that asexuality has a function or has adaptiveness or is an adaptation. The model (or testable hypothesis) for asexuality can be found in Appendix J on page 636 of Part II of the two-part invited article I wrote in 2010 for Antonianum, the official journal of the Franciscan Pontifical University in Rome. The article is called "Pedophilia: Its Relationship to the Homosexualities and the Roman Catholic Church, Part I and II." It contains information about asexuality. I'll attach Part I and Part II to this submission to the Evolutionary Psychology Group. I'll excerpt Appendix J below although it will make little sense outside of the context of the entire two-part article and the relevant Figures.
If anyone gets the messages from the evolutionary psychology group in a way that doesn't allow for PDF attachments, if you want the two part article send me a private email at jay.feierman84@... and I'll send it to you by private email.
APPENDIX J: Asexual Persons and Psychiatric Conditions that Can Mimic Asexuality
If one were to place asexual males on the Attraction Quadrant graphs in Figures
1 and 2, they would be in Quadrant A, unmasculinized and defeminized, which
makes them neither masculinized nor feminized. Based on the information in Appendix
M and N, it can be seen that the individuals towards whom they potentially
could be sexually attracted do not exist. They would have to be older, taller,
larger, less vulnerable, more dominant, stronger, rougher, harder and more hairy
than SELF. At the same time, they would also have to be more feminine than SELF.
That is impossible. Persons in Quadrant A prefer neither mounting/penetrating nor
mount-receiving/being penetrated. They are potentially responsive for romantic love
and sex from non-existent individuals who would have to “make the first move.”
Some of them do engage in masturbation, as “asexual” really means no sexual attractions
to other persons. Asexual persons have their own on-line community called
AVEN, The Asexual Visibility and Education Network. See http://www.asexuality.
org/home/. The author has evaluated a small number of priests and religious brothers
who were thought to be asexual.
Leif Ekblad: This seems to be a reasonable description of asexuality: http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/2012/aug/21/asexuality-always-existed-asexual
Note that it is believed that 1% of humanity identify as asexuals, which is a too large figure for it to be genetic damage. Yet, asexuality presumably directly affects reproduction, so why do we have it?
Jay R. Feierman: If you are interested in asexuality I think your answer is in the attached two-part article.