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Table of contents
PREFACE
INTRODUCTION-1.1
INTRODUCTION-1.2
INTRODUCTION-1.3
INTRODUCTION-1.4
INTRODUCTION-1.5
INTRODUCTION-1.6
INTRODUCTION-1.7
FOOTNOTES-1
FOOTNOTES-2
THE STUDY OF SEXUAL INVERSION
SEXUAL INVERSION IN MEN-1
SEXUAL INVERSION IN MEN-2
SEXUAL INVERSION IN MEN-3
HISTORY-1-2-3-4
HISTORY-5
HISTORY-6
HISTORY-7-8
HISTORY-9
HISTORY-10-11-12
HISTORY-13-14
HISTORY-15
HISTORY-16-17-18-19
HISTORY-20
HISTORY-21 (begin)
HISTORY-21 (end)
HISTORY-22-23-24
HISTORY-25
HISTORY-26
HISTORY-27
HISTORY-28-29-30-31-32
HISTORY-33
SEXUAL INVERSION IN WOMEN-1
SEXUAL INVERSION IN WOMEN-2
SEXUAL INVERSION IN WOMEN-3
SEXUAL INVERSION IN WOMEN-4
HISTORY-34-35-36-37
HISTORY-38
HISTORY-39.1
HISTORY-39.2
HISTORY-39.3
HISTORY-39.4
FOOTNOTES
THE NATURE OF SEXUAL INVERSION-1
THE NATURE OF SEXUAL INVERSION-2
THE NATURE OF SEXUAL INVERSION-3
THE NATURE OF SEXUAL INVERSION-4
FOOTNOTES
THE THEORY OF SEXUAL INVERSION-1
THE THEORY OF SEXUAL INVERSION-2
THE THEORY OF SEXUAL INVERSION-3
CONCLUSIONS-1
CONCLUSIONS-2
CONCLUSIONS-3
CONCLUSIONS-4
FOOTNOTES
APPENDIX A
APPENDIX B-1
APPENDIX B-2-3-4
INDEX OF AUTHORS

alteration in the metabolism," as F.H.A. Marshall suggests, "even in 

comparatively late life, may initiate changes in the direction of the 

opposite sex." Metabolic chemical processes may thus be found to furnish a 

key to complex and subtle sexual variations, alike somatic and psychic, 

although we must still regard such processes as arising on an inborn 

predisposition. 

 

Whatever its ultimate explanation, sexual inversion may thus fairly be 

considered a "sport," or variation, one of those organic aberrations which 

we see throughout living nature, in plants and in animals. 

 

It is not here asserted, as I would carefully point out, that an inverted 

sexual instinct, or organ for such instinct, is developed in early 

embryonic life; such a notion is rightly rejected as absurd. What we may 

reasonably regard as formed at an early stage of development is strictly a 

predisposition; that is to say, such a modification of the organism that 

it becomes more adapted than the normal or average organism to experience 

sexual attraction to the same sex. The sexual invert may thus be roughly 

compared to the congenital idiot, to the instinctive criminal, to the man 

of genius, who are all not strictly concordant with the usual biological 

variation (because this is of a less subtle character), but who become 

somewhat more intelligible to us if we bear in mind their affinity to 

variations. Symonds compared inversion to color-blindness; and such a 

comparison is reasonable. Just as the ordinary color-blind person is 

congenitally insensitive to those red-green rays which are precisely the 

most impressive to the normal eye, and gives an extended value to the 

other colors,--finding that blood is the same color as grass, and a florid 

complexion blue as the sky,--so the invert fails to see emotional values 

patent to normal persons, transferring those values to emotional 

associations which, for the rest of the world, are utterly distinct. Or we 

may compare inversion to such a phenomenon as color-hearing, in which 

there is not so much defect as an abnormality of nervous tracks producing 

new and involuntary combinations. Just as the color-hearer instinctively 

associates colors with sounds, like the young Japanese lady who remarked 

when listening to singing, "That boy's voice is red!" so the invert has 

his sexual sensations brought into relationship with objects that are 

normally without sexual appeal.[237] And inversion, like color-hearing is 

found more commonly in young subjects, tending to become less marked, or 

to die out, after puberty. Color-hearing, while an abnormal phenomenon, it 

must be added, cannot be called a diseased condition, and it is probably 

much less frequently associated with other abnormal or degenerative 

stigmata than is inversion; there is often a congenital element, shown by 

the tendency to hereditary transmission, while the associations are 

developed in very early life, and are too regular to be the simple result 

of suggestion.[238] 

 

All such organic variations are abnormalities. It is important that we 

should have a clear idea as to what an abnormality is. Many people imagine 

that what is abnormal is necessarily diseased. That is not the case, 

unless we give the word disease an inconveniently and illegitimately wide 

extension. It is both inconvenient and inexact to speak of 

color-blindness, criminality, and genius as diseases in the same sense as 

we speak of scarlet fever or tuberculosis or general paralysis as 

diseases. Every congenital abnormality is doubtless due to a peculiarity 

in the sperm or oval elements or in their mingling, or to some disturbance 

in their early development. But the same may doubtless be said of the 

normal dissimilarities between brothers and sisters. It is quite true that 

any of these aberrations may be due to antenatal disease, but to call them 

abnormal does not beg that question. If it is thought that any authority 

is needed to support this view, we can scarcely find a weightier than that 

of Virchow, who repeatedly insisted on the right use of the word 

"anomaly," and who taught that, though an anomaly may constitute a 

predisposition to disease, the study of anomalies--pathology, as he called 

it, teratology as we may perhaps prefer to call it--is not the study of 


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