Show Me! (book)

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Show Me!” with photos by Will McBride and text by Helga Fleischhauer-Hardt, published in German in 1974, "English language adaptation" by Hilary Davies, New York: St. Martin's Press, 1975. It appeared in 1974 in German under the title Zeig Mal!, written with psychiatrist Helga Fleischhauer-Hardt for children and their parents. It was translated into English a year later and was widely available in bookstores on both sides of the Atlantic for many years, but later became subject to expanded child pornography laws in jurisdictions including the United States. In Germany, the book was followed in 1990 by a second edition that included, among other additions, a discussion of the AIDS epidemic.

Foreward by Helmut Kentler, "Children's Sexuality”

The English of this translation was improved here on BoyWiki starting 2 July 2015. To see it as it was before, see [[Show Me!&oldid=27058|the prior version.

THE IDEA that sexuality is, or should be, only reproductive is still widespread, even though anyone who holds an unbiased view realizes that people of all ages respond sexually, and that only a tiny fraction of all sexual conduct is directed towards procreation.

The one who merely opens his eyes and looks, does not recognize reality; he only gets his own preconceptions confirmed. Everyone finds only what s/he seeks, and seeks what s/he already knows. Before looking at what sex really is, we must begin with a few words on our eagerness to equate sexuality with reproduction, and to deny that children and old people also need sexual pleasure.

Desexualization. Adaptation to the capitalist system.

Scientific research has, in the last decades, discovered or rediscovered evidence from numerous sources, showing that in Central Europe through the 17th century a pro-sexual lifestyle prevailed that today – despite a liberalizing trend – would be seen as alien and dangerous and its revival prevented at all costs. J. van Ussel, one of the best authorities on pro-sexual manners and customs of that time, gives the following sketch:

“It was generally accepted that the satisfaction of the sex drive was necessary for good health. In some cities, brothels were set up by the authorities. Physicality was practiced in a way that we have forgotten today. People commonly touched, caressed, hugged and kissed; nurses and parents masturbated young children, to calm them. Older people engaged in mutual masturbation with young people. The condemnation of masturbation, by doctors and then by clergy, does not appear until the 18th century. Premarital and extramarital sexual relations are mainstreamed; insufficient contraception (birth control) is condemned by the churches. The rulers and the aristocracy practice promiscuity, which is rarely criticized. Students and soldiers do what they please. The clergy are not exactly celibate. At home people sleep naked, the whole family and the employees together in one room. Even in the bath house you’re naked. On ceremonial occasions the prettiest girls in the city are naked on display. A rich vocabulary for the sexual is available. Young people do not need sex education because they are not excluded from the sexual world of adults, experiencing and learning from them what they need to know.”[1]

As a matter of course young children already knew sexual facts; this appears most clearly from a collection of dialogues, written in Latin by Erasmus of Rotterdam and published in 1522, dedicated to his then six-year-old godson. The title indicates the intention of the book: “Dialogues, not only put together to refine the Latin of the children, but above all for the purpose of education for life.”

In the 64 dialogues, eight sexual problems are handled that today we hardly ever ask young people to confront:

  1. The meaning of coitus (it is used for reproduction, but also for enjoyment);
    1. The worth and worthlessness (pluses and minuses) of virginity. A girl ripe for coitus who stays a virgin for too long will become unhappy and get the traits of an old maid.
  2. Extramarital sexuality and how the partners should behave.
  3. Prevention of syphilis, in the context of a discussion of whether the marriage of an old syphilitic knight and a sixteen-year-old “flower of youth” was valid.
  4. The exaggerated consequences of frequent sexual intercourse
  5. Education of the infant (“The child is not only nourished with milk, but also with the scent of the mother’s body”)
  6. warning young girls not to join a convent (it is more difficult to be chaste there than in the world, because what do you find? Gluttons, carousing brothers, sexual buccaneers, lesbian women)
  7. The issue of divorce (“I wish that God would punish the people who have taken away the right to divorce”)
  8. description of customs in the inns of France (freedom of movement for girls, dressing and undressing, sleeping habits, behavior in the public baths).

Erasmus did not use gently circumscribing terminology, he calls things by their name (a girl greeted her boyfriend with the words “mea mentula,” my cock). He does not “educate”: his readers, the children, already know the facts. He is concerned with behavior: discovering the right attitude, the right conduct. He imposed no position, but rather discussed various arguments.[2]

In 1857, the educator Karl Georg von Raumer, in his “History of Pedagogy,” expressed indignation about Erasmus and his choice of subjects: “He writes of the most vulgar pleasures . . . What should boys do with those satires? . . .How are they going to discuss things of which they understand nothing?” 3

That the children of the 15th, 16th, even 17th century very well understood the dialogues, and how they came to this understanding, is shown in another source. In the first years of the 17th century, the royal physician Heroard kept a detailed diary on the development of Louis XIII, and it can be seen how uninhibited the children were at that time concerning sexual phenomena, including sex between children and adults.

Louis XIII, born in 1601, is not yet a year old when he already laughs lustily “if you play with his penis.” Everybody plays with it and presses kisses on it. Often he plays the king or the queen in bed, and everyone is naked. When he is a year old, he is betrothed to the Infanta of Spain, who frolics with him, “What is the most beloved of the Infanta?” whereupon the child puts his hand on his penis. At the age of three, he calls his governess’s attention to his erections. “My cock is like a drawbridge,” he told her. “See how it goes up and down!”

When you say to him: “Sir, you do not have a penis anymore,” he replies, “Ah, is he (the penis) not sailing?” and lifts it with his finger in amusement. (samuel: By the way: that is originally French and already lost some sense when translated into German.) (user:Wanker I have no idea who Samuel is.)

His mother puts her hand on his penis and says: “My son, I have taken your (elephant’s) trunk.” (samuel: Schnabel was used to denote the elephant trunk)

He knows the positions of sexual intercourse and talks about them with his maid. Between his fifth and sixth year, he can take these positions with Mademoiselle Mercier, who sleeps in his room. He looks at her genitals, sometimes lightly touching them. 4 A1

In 1787 the educator Villaume asks how one could take away children’s desire to touch their genitals. Another teacher, K.G. Bauer, responds to this: by arousing disgust in them. The adolescents are shown corpses, apparently to teach them to feel revulsion towards the body. 5

The pedagogical views of Erasmus and the educational practices at the royal court in France are worlds apart from that of the educators of the 18th and 19th centuries. In the historical development of four centuries of sexuality, joyful play and pleasure are transformed into something shameful and disgusting, from which children and young people must be protected by all means.

What separates the end of the Middle Ages from the Modern Period is a process that might be called “desexualization”. Sexuality is reduced to reproduction; any sexual activity that is not intended for reproduction is discouraged, made taboo, and finally suppressed and relegated to secrecy (usually with fear of the consequences of discovery). The “purity” of the innocent child has been created out of nothing. Now children are believed to be asexual; young people are expected to be ascetics. Sexual needs during adolescence are turned into symptoms of moral decay and severe personality damage; sexual practices are eradicated, the sexual language stunted, more and more people abide by a morality of prudery; the sexual sensitivity of the body surface is restricted to the genitals, the body becomes a working tool. This desexualization is closely linked to constraints and oppression for other vital needs, and the expulsion of death from everyday life.

For Luther, burping and farting after eating is bad manners, even an insult. Spitting is prohibited. For blowing the nose, you have to take a (clean) handkerchief with you. Yawns must be covered with your hand. The performance of No. 1 and No 2 needs to be hidden, only done in private. An increasing hygienic effort is driven by dirt and sweat. Even direct physical relationships with other people are prevented: diners do not eat with your hands from the same pot, the cup no longer makes the rounds, one does not sleep naked and certainly not together in bed, naked. Emotional outbursts – screaming, raving, crying, exuberance – may not arise, emotions, feelings, moods must be attenuated and leveled out for the sake of “courtesy.” The same repressions affect dying, death, the dead: once the whole body came to the dinner table, carved by the master of the house in front of everyone, now cuts of meat are served – nothing to remind you that you eat a carcass; the death of a person will be a lonely death in the seclusion of a hospital room – corpses you can only see as a result of an accident. 6

Why this oppression, restrictions, denials? Why are they being enforced today in the socialization of each child?

The economic and social changes between 1500 and 1900 (reconstruction of the feudal economy to a capitalist economy, restructuring of the social levels in a class society), required the modeling of a human type that met the requirements of the new living conditions. Desexualization of life and of his own body, control of emotions and moods by restrictive internalized standards, distance to others and to their own physicality, were needed to plan life rationally, to make people the efficient consumers demanded by the construction phase of capitalism, urbanization, and industrialization, and at the same time desensitize people from the increasing alienation from others. 7

This transformation of people has been described as the process of civilization (N. Elias) or bourgeoisification (van Ussel), depending on whether it was considered a change in social relations or as an individual improvement of the adaptation abilities, respectively.

As a result of this analysis, it is to be noted that the hostility towards sexual expression which is not aimed at reproduction, as well as the denial of the sexual needs of children and the elderly, is ultimately an effort to indoctrinate people so that the bourgeois industrial-capitalist social order is maintained in the structure of their characters indefinitely.

Hence, it is not surprising that some see morals corrupted and the society endangered when little kids play doctor or youth masturbate without guilt.

The rediscovery of children's sexuality

We owe the rediscovery of the child’s sexuality to Sigmund Freud. In painstaking analysis of the life stories of his patients, he noted that from birth sexuality comprises numerous stimuli and activities, which are independent of the functioning of the genital apparatus and thus of the reproductive capacity.

Sexuality is not an instinct: its object is not biologically determined, its goals and gratifications are variable. The newborn has “polymorphous perverse” drives and reflexes: his or her whole body can be a source of sexual stimuli. In the course of psychosexual development, under the influence of nursing and education, certain “erogenous zones” will be accentuated (e.g. in the nursing stage the mouth, in the toilet training stage the anus). They are the sources of the “instincts” that are subordinated to the primacy of the genital area at puberty. This is the autoerotic infantile sexuality that develops through the stages of orality and anality and finally is overcome by phallic sexuality. 8 The ongoing conflict between innate drives and the limitation of satisfaction through social norms is formative throughout the development. Solutions found including failed attempts have a decisive impact on the personality development: The destiny/fate of drives builds character.

The research findings of Freud and his school were violently suppressed in Germany after the Nazi seizure of power. After 1945 they advanced far beyond the inner circle of some specialized scholars. First the “anti-authoritarian movement” of students helped to disseminate the findings of psychoanalysis to a wider audience, but in a version which contradicted the thinking of Freud on key points.

The Marxist-trained anti-authoritarians suspected that psychoanalysis is simply a method to facilitate the adjustment of individuals to the existing society and thus a means of preserving the status quo. Close to them was the doctrine of Wilhelm Reich, who, with Bernfeld, Fromm, and Fernichel, was a founder of the “Freudian left.” Reich had shown in his publications that capitalism must necessarily require suppression of sexual drives, in order to train men to be I-weak individuals adapted to an authority-based system. While Freud argued that every culture ultimately suppresses and sublimates sexual drives, Reich believed that the contradiction between instinctual demands and cultural demands could be neutralized by a revolution in social relations and by a revolution of individuals, namely a sex-friendly education which would allow a satisfactory genital life for all. 9

This “anti-authoritarian movement” agreed with Reich not only in theory, they tried to practice his teachings. In communes they experimented with forms of a “free love” that they hoped would liberate people from “uptight” conventional morality on gender roles and relationships.

In alternative children and student care centers, efforts were made to establish anti-authoritarian relationships between adults and children and among children that are more appropriate with respect to the needs and interest of the children. The insecurity of the adults is still clearly noted in their initial reports: the sexuality of children they met in their work was a strange world to them, they were obliged to confront their own sexual difficulties.

Here is a report from the 24-year-old Eberhard, a member of the “Commune 2” in Berlin, concerning the behavior of 3-year-old Grischa:

One evening Grischa comes to Eberhard and wants to sleep with him. After some hemming and hawing, she lies down in his bed and asks him to lie down with her in his underwear. Then the following scene takes place:

Grischa says she does not need a blanket to sleep. I also will not close my eyes. Then she wants to pet me, hands and face. I can only caress her once she is done caressing me, albeit only briefly. In order to rub my back, I must pull up my shirt. I lie on my back. Grischa caresses my belly, and she understands my ribs standing out to be breasts. I explain to her that they are ribs, I only have a flat chest and nipples. She strokes my own and shows me her nipples. We talk about the breasts of girls when they are older. Will it be so with me? Butt? stroke. I have to turn over. She pulls down my underpants and strokes my bottom. When I turn over again to caress her as requested, what catches her interest immediately “Penis”. She strokes it and wants to “close it” (Pull the foreskin over the glans), and I’m very excited and my cock is stiff. She beams and caresses me a few minutes with comments such as:

“Caressing! Look at the penis! It’s big! ….! Make it small!” She kneels beside me, laughs and moves only her hands, keeping her body frozen. I try a few times to move the focus of the talk towards her vagina, say that I would like to caress her – but she does not let herself be interrupted.

Finally, there is a reaction. She takes my cock with the whole left hand, goes to pull down her pantyhose and says: “I wanna put it in.” Although I expected something in that manner (Marion had told of bath games where Nasser (4 year old boy; HK) held his cock in front of Grisha’s belly and then bent back so much that the cock could have been inserted, but for lack of erection failed), but I was nevertheless so inhibited that I quickly said that the cock was probably too large.

Grisha immediately abandoned her idea, but very reluctantly let me caress her vagina. Then she gets a mirror in order to look at my cock and her vagina, again and again. After repeated caressing and measurement attempts the desire resurfaces to “stick it in”, but more energetically than before.

Me: “Just try!” She holds my cock near her vagina and then determines resignedly: “Too big.”« 10

Certainly the situation is unusual for both of them – while the inquisitive little girl feels safe, the young man feels more inhibited, and still in his report, when he writes instead of “penis” “cock,” he trivializes the sexual attack to which he was exposed.

In some cases students tried to have contact with children from working-class families. With older children, the students encountered a well-developed sexual subculture, influenced by the life situation of these children. So says a staff member from the care unit “Red Freedom” in Berlin-Kreuzberg about a conversation with the 11-year-old Rita:

In the 4th grade boys had brought some magazines with naked women and men fucking each other . . . After viewing the porn a boy threw paperballs next to Rita’s place, reading: “May I fuck you?” She threw back “No”. Another trial of seduction using more paper balls got her to a “Yes.” In the apartment of the boy she undressed and “let his pecker dangle in her hole.” She would not fuck with him, because it would have hurt too much. In addition she was afraid of becoming pregnant, since her mother would send her to a foster home.

Once again they fucked in a bush, but there they were caught. Hence, the director of the school and her mother got knowledge of the deed. She was not beaten, but she was again threatened with the Home if it happened again. She once had smacked her little brother, when he saw a couple at Oranienplatz who were doing it. “He was not supposed to witness it, since he was not yet able to understand it.” A2

The child care home seemed better than her own family. Her father was drunk all the time and then violent towards himself and others . . . She could not endure it anymore, because she was afraid of him. 11

(samuel: The German language here uses conjunctive form, meaning the staff member repeats alleged statements, something that supposedly might have happened.)

The public, still accustomed to the ideal of an obedient, orderly, and innocent childhood, when hearing such reports and for the first time facing the fact of “child sexuality”, responded with massive defense reactions: These phenomena were attributed to the reporters, they accused them of seduction to sexual debauchery, and even of concentration camp-like human experiments. 12 But not so much because of this defamation did the initiators of the “anti-authoritarian education” finally revise their theory and practice, but because they imposed their experience of two not unanticipated insights: It showed once again that freedom is like an island in an otherwise authoritarian child-and youth-hostile environment; and there is an inevitable acting out of frustration and pent-up aggression, so that tender, joyful relationships are ruined again and again at the first attempt by sadistic and masochistic needs; and therefore it was clear that a merely sexual liberation is not enough, but only serves to adapt to the already progressive liberalization in the leisure and consumer sectors.

Under the conditions of wayward late capitalism, frugality and abstinence become “dysfunctional” virtues, because the “affluent economy” is dependent on growing consumer enthusiasms; and also the increasing stress in the production and administration sectors require “pressure valves”, “compensation”, and “recreation zones” which may be created in the socially inconsequential personal realms that most likely will not affect the social relations. It is foreseen today that sexual phenomena in childhood and adolescence soon will excite and concern nobody because this realm of knowledge will have become common knowledge: There is now even less reason why, as Reich wrote in 1934, “the masturbation of young children and the sexual activity of adolescents should disturb the construction of petrol stations and the building of aircraft” 13, that is, the established capitalism can afford to relinquish control of the sex life.


How great is the interest in educational matters today is shown by a walk into any bookstore. To have stimulated this interest is not the only merit of the "anti-authoritarian movement." Numerous documents from psychoanalytic and Marxist pedagogy from the period before 1933, forgotten and almost lost, were newly released, partly in pirated editions. Our knowledge of facts about the sexuality of children is greater today than ever, especially since now the research results of other countries are taken with less resistance. Whoever is willing to be informed, finds enough material. 15

Particularly revealing are the observations of the sexual development of boys published by Vera Schmidt, director of the Children's Home in the psychoanalytic institute in Moscow, in the twenties, 16:

As early as three weeks of age one can witness the exclusively breastfed boy engage, alongside "hungry" sucking, in a whole different type of "lustful" sucking that is accompanied by a special grunt, such as when he suckles on his finger, or when he persistently and eagerly sucks on his fist while defecating. Soon one can differentiate between the "hungry" and "lustful" sucking during breastfeeding as well. From the sixth week on the differences become especially prominent: Before meals fingers get licked restlessly and with unusual craving - once finished eating he will still eagerly suck on his finger but the boy now lies unmoving, eyes wide open, and lets out the characteristic "grunt of pleasure". In the fourth month finger-sucking is only used as a sleeping aid anymore, while awake it gets replaced with "muscular eroticism": The child is entirely occupied with lively movements and bodily exploration. Once gruel is fed in the 6th month the mouth takes on new significance: It is a tool for playing, grasping, taste tests and for kissing. "He suddenly threw himself at me and sucked on my cheek." In the ninth month one can first witness the playing with genitals: "He lies on his back while he gropes around with his hand until he reaches for it . . . He laughs and talks loudly meanwhile."

RA Spitz has come to similar conclusions, from his thorough studies of psychosexual development in early life. 17 Above all, he was able to show that playing with the genitals in the first year of life is the rule, but only if the mother-to-child relationship is satisfactory and the general development is well advanced. 18 A3 This is also confirmed by Kinsey and his associates, to which we previously owe the most accurate information about sexual skills and activities for young children. 19 According to their studies, both boys and girls from the age of about 5 months are able to have an orgasm, which differs from the adult orgasm in no fundamental respect.

At the age of 3, more girls than boys masturbate to orgasm, because it is easier for them to perform the necessary rhythmic hand movements. Boys between 10 and 20 years are characterized in that they reach orgasm repeatedly in restricted time periods (they are much more capable than any older man in this respect). "The absence of ejaculation does not mean that the child did not experience an orgasm, just as the failure to reach an ejaculation in the adult woman does not mean that she did not experience an orgasm." 20 As clearly as the orgasmic reactions can be identified, the following report indicates about 3-year girls:

"She was lying on her stomach with raised knees on the bed and started at intervals of one second or less to make rhythmic pelvic movements. She moved mainly only the pelvis, while keeping her legs in a tight stance. It was a soft, perfectly rhythmic movement from back to front, interrupted only by brief pauses in which she pressed her genitals against the doll she lay on. The return motion was intermittently as convulsive.

There were 44 shocks in continuous rhythm, a break for a moment, then 87 shocks, a pause, 10 impulses and tranquility. The breathing was concentrated and intense and ragged as she approached orgasm. In the final stages she was totally unconscious of her surroundings; her eyes were glazed and staring into space. After orgasm, there was noticeable relief and relaxation. Two minutes later a second wave with 48, 18 and 57 shocks, short breaks in between. With increasing tension, she began to moan audibly; immediately after cessation of pelvic thrusts came complete relaxation and then there was only barely perceptible movement.” 21

The sexual potency of children at a later age does not decline, even at that time designated by Freud as the "latency period". Observations in kindergartens and schools have shown that there may arise particularly lively and deep relationships with peers at this age, veritable "Romeo and Juliet” relationships the intensity of which is equivalent to the capacity of the adult love.

However, a necessary condition is an educational climate that allows those often strongly sexually-toned friendships. In a sex-negative educational environment, sexual needs are pushed into the shadows and seek relief in the camouflage of role-playing games ("Doctor", and "Father-Mother" games). An example of the variability of the sexual manifestations are 1927 published records of Nelly Wolffheim from her psychoanalytically oriented kindergarten in Berlin: 22

Erich is heavily courted by Erna (both 6 years) and finally won. They sit thenceforth often together, arrange a future marriage and talk about the wedding. - At 5, Horst is in love with the Hanni, who is also 5. The signs of his love are tender and simmering with excitement: a furtive caress or a kiss on the hand. In bed at night he masturbates and talks loudly to himself. The content of these soliloquies is the kindergarten and Hanni. – Rolf (5 years old) and Gerhard (4 years old) have such a fierce need for intimacy that they will suddenly fall into each other's arms, press up against each other and kiss. Besides playing doctor, in which other children are also involved, the two of them came up with and secretly practice the "Strawinzchenspiel" ("strawinzchen game") all on their own. It consists of unbuttoning the pants and masturbating.

Now there are no research results that allow a statement as to how the different forms and contents of these “kid loves” affect further development. Questions should be asked, for example, whether the friendship of Rolf and Gerhard indicates homosexuality, or whether here there is only proof for believing that the goal of the sexual instinct is not yet fixed at this age.

The effects of sexual relationships during childhood can best be estimated from studies which were conducted in the Netherlands. F. Bernard 23 surveyed 30 Dutch adults who as children had sexual relationships with adults to learn how they feel about these relationships in retrospect. A characterological investigation followed. The subjects almost always rated their sexual relationships as positive. "The frequency of psychologically or functionally neurotic symptoms and social behaviour do not differ from the general Dutch population. On the contrary, the test shows that the "victims" are less likely to feel threatened or tense than the "average Dutchman" . . . It seems as if they understand themselves better, are more self-critical and less defensive." E. Brongersma 24 found similar results based on an analysis of the available material about the issue of pedophilia. If the environment does not discriminate against such relationships, one can expect positive effects on personal development the more the older party feels responsible for the younger. There is no reason to assume that these results do not also apply to love between children of the same age. Their meaning should therefore strongly depend on how they are evaluated by adult caregivers.


Once one has accepted that, in addition to its reproductive function, sexuality has a much more significant meaning for individuals through its function of pleasure and relaxation, and considers further that sexual needs play a role in all social relations; that "sexual fate" affects not only character development but also the content and shape of social relations, then one can no longer be satisfied by merely acknowledging that children are sexual beings and simply hoping they will turn out alright if one leaves them to their own devices. To affirm "child sexuality" means giving it value and integrating it into the greater culture because only then can children cultivate their sexual needs and ways to satisfaction, and only on that condition can newly grow what was destroyed by prudery and puritanism: A sexual culture. One will have to admit that this task has barely been recognized yet. We are missing examples on how to solve it. Merely those foreign cultures which have developed a high-standing sexual culture but which we condescendingly call primitive based on their level of civilization could give us suggestions as to how sex-positive parenting and an integration of "child sexuality" into the larger culture could be done.

Of particular interest for our purposes are the Muria, a tribal population in western India. They have developed an outstanding festival-culture, with numerous dances and Community Games, the men and women love to richly adorn themselves. The children and young people join the festivities at the end, take on special functions, or even the organizer role. (Als bestes der Muria-Spiele gilt die Sexualität. And the best of the Muria games deals with sexuality.? WR) The community center, the "ghotul,” plays the most important role in the social lives of young, unmarried people. It is there that the boys and girls sleep as soon as they are six or seven years old. Adults have no place in the ghotul. The very understanding and friendly parent-child relationship is now replaced by a ghotul-child relationship. The older children are responsible for the younger: teaching them the manners and customs, dances and songs, explaining contraception and engaging in sexual intercourse. The only sin there is, is that a boy tries to sleep with a girl before she is emotionally ready. But it is believed that the girls are sexually insatiable and that it is the duty of the boys to satisfy them - as a small compensation for the fact that they are burdened with menstruation and childbearing. 25

The Trobriander of northwestern Melanesia, investigated by B. Malinowski, have striking similarities. Although there are community centers (called bukumatula) only for smaller groups and only for the over 12-year-old boy, their girlfriends are invited to spend the night in a cozy nook there. But children too may lead a liberal sexual life sympathetically sanctioned by adults - they look for or create secluded corners in bush or grove. As with the Muria, independence and autonomy of children are respected: Punishment is virtually unknown and children form their own "republics" whose resolutions not even the chief can repeal. Adults don't hide their sex life from children. Children satisfy their sexual needs without restraint in games and pastimes.

The institutions and behavior patterns of these two cultures could not, of course, be transferred to our own culture. Nevertheless, to learn from such examples, the minimum conditions must be created in order to solve the problem of "child sexuality":

1. A society whose highest value is the principle of efficiency can only ever treat children as weak, inferior outsiders because they can't yet meet the required obligations. Neither can sexual culture develop in such a society. "Lust friendly" values and values which children can participate in developing are the precondition so a sexually friendly culture which also integrates children can arise.

2. Children must always, as far as according to their age is possible, be taken seriously by adults as equal partners, and they need an area of increasing independence and autonomy in which they can control their sexual desires themselves in mutual consideration and respect. 27 The still prevailing sexual hostility and child protection claims are camouflaged antipathy to children, and may for a time act as inhibition of thought, and certainly act as a resistance to the implementation of such considerations. But it suffices to observe the reforms of the Sexual Criminal Law here and in other Western European countries, and you will note: Key strategic decisions are already being made that may lead to a sex-positive culture and a more friendly attitude towards "child sexuality".



1 J. van Ussel: Sexualunterdrückung – Die Geschichte der Sexualfeindschaft, rororo sexologie, Reinbek b. Hamburg 1970, S. 25.

2 Eine ausführliche Inhaltsangabe dieser Dialoge gibt van Ussel, a. a. O., S. 25 ff.

3 Zitiert nach N. Elias: Über den Prozeß der Zivilisation – Soziogenetische und psychogenetische Untersuchungen, Francke Verlag, Bern u. München, 2 Bde., 1. Bd. S. 232.

4 Ausführlichere Zitate sind zu finden bei van Ussel, a. a. O., S. 110 f., und bei C. van Emde Boas: Der Beitrag der Psychoanalyse zur Entwicklung der Liebesfähigkeit des Menschen, in: A. Schelkopf (Hg.): Sexualität – Formen und Fehlentwicklungen, Verlag für Medizinische Psychologie im Verlag Vandenhoeck u. Ruprecht, Göttingen 1968, S. 86 f.

5 Daten und Zitate nach van Ussel, a. a. O., S. 67.

6 N. Elias, a. a. O., hat diese Prozesse anhand zeitgenössischer Texte eindrücklich beschrieben. Welche Auswirkungen sie auf die Kindererziehung hatten, ist nachzulesen bei J. H. van den Berg: Metabletica, Über die Wandlungen des Menschen – Grundlagen einer historischen Psychologie, Verlag Vandenhoeck u. Ruprecht, Göttingen 1960.

7 Zur genauen Analyse dieser Umwandlungen siehe neben N. Elias und van Ussel, a. a. O., auch E. Michel: Sozialgeschichte der industriellen Arbeitswelt, ihrer Krisenformen und Gestaltungsversuche, Verlag Josef Knecht, Frankfurt a. M. 1953, und M. Horkheimer: Autorität und Familia, in: ders.: Kritische Theorie, S. Fischer Verlag, Frankfurt a. M. 1968, Bd. 1, S. 277-360.

8 Vgl. S. Freud: Drei Abhandlungen zur Sexualtheorie, 1905, Gesammelte Werke, Bd. 5, S. 27-145.

9 Vgl. W. Reich: Die sexuelle Revolution – Zur charakterlichen Selbststeuerung des Menschen, Europäische Verlagsanstalt, Frankfurt a. M. 1966.

10 Kommune 2: Versuch der Revolutionierung des bürgerlichen Individuums, Oberbaumverlag, Berlin 1969, S. 92.

11 Autorenkollektiv am Psychologischen Institut der Freien Universität Berlin: Sozialistische Projektarbeit im Berliner Schülerladen Rote Freiheit, Fischer Bücherei, Bd. 1147, S. 183 f.

12 Belege bringt H.-W. Saß: Links von sich selbst – Probleme der Emanzipation, in: ders. (Hg.): Antiautoritäre Erziehung oder die Erziehung der Erzieher, J. B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung, Stuttgart 1972, S. 1 f. Ausführlich analysiert eine solche regelrechte Hetzkampagne W. F. Haug: Der sexuell-politische Skandal als Instrument antidemokratischer Kampagnen, in: Schülerladen Rote Freiheit (siehe Anm. 11), S. 389-464.

13 W. Reich: Massenpsychologie des Faschismus – Zur Sexualökonomie der politischen Reaktion und zur proletarischen Sexualpolitik, Verlag für Sexualpolitik, Kopenhagen-Prag-Zürich 1934, S. 48.

14 Den ausführlichen Nachweis für diese These führen D. u. Th. von Freyberg: Zur Kritik der Sexualerziehung, edition suhrkamp, Bd. 467.

15 Eine Zusammenfassung der Forschungsergebnisse zur Kindersexualität bringt C. B. Broderick: Kinder- und Jugendsexualität – Sexuelle Sozialisierung, rororo sexologie, Reinbek b. Hamburg 1970.

16 W. Schmidt: Die Bedeutung des Brustsaugens und Fingerlutschens für die psychologische Entwicklung des Kindes, in: Anleitung für eine revolutionäre Erziehung Nr. 1, hg. vom Zentralrat der sozialistischen Kinderläden West-Berlin.

17 Eine Zusammenfassung bringt R. A. Spitz: Vom Säugling zum Kleinkind – Naturgeschichte der Mutter-Kind-Beziehungen im ersten Lebensjahr, Ernst Klett Verlag, Stuttgart 1967.

18 R. A. Spitz: Ein Nachtrag zum Problem des Autoerotismus – Frühe sexuelle Verhaltensweisen und ihre Bedeutung für die Persönlichkeitsbildung, in: Psyche, 16. Jg. (1964), S. 241-272.

19 A. C. Kinsey u. a.: Das sexuelle Verhalten des Mannes, S. Fischer Verlag, Frankfurt a. M. 1966. – dies.: Das sexuelle Verhalten der Frau, ebenda 1966. Siehe im Buch über den Mann das Stichwort »Kinder« (Index, S. 671), Im Buch über die Frau das Stichwort »Kindheit bis zur Pubertät« (Index, S. 703).

20 A. C. Kinsey: Das sexuelle Verhalten der Frau, S. 105.

21 ebenda, S. 106.

22 N. Wolffheim: Psychoanalyse und Kindergarten und andere Arbeiten zur Kinderpsychologie, Ernst Reinhardt Verlag, München-Basel 1966, S. 124 ff.

23 F. Bernard: Pädophilie – eine Krankheit? – Folgen für die Entwicklung der kindlichen Psyche, in: Sexualmedizin, Dezember 1972, Heft 9, S. 438-440.

24 E. Brongersma: Das verfemte Geschlecht – Dokumentation über Knabenliebe (Reihe Sexualwissenschaft), Lichtenberg Verlag, München 1970.

25 Ausführlicher habe ich die Muria-Kultur beschrieben in H. Kentler: Sexualerziehung, rororo sexologie, Reinbek b. Hamburg, 5. Aufl. 1972, S. 97 ff. Dort stehen auch Quellenangaben.

26 B. Malinowski: Das Geschlechtsleben der Wilden in Nordwest-Melanesien, Verlag Grethlein u. Co., Leipzig u. Zürich o. J., S. 36-52.

27 Siehe hierzu ausführlich H. Kentler, a. a. O. Anmerkungen, nicht von H. K.:

A1: Man kann wohl davon ausgehen, daß eine solche Erziehung ein Privileg der Aristokratie war, während für die Bevölkerungsmehrheit andere moralische Maßstäbe gegolten haben dürften. Auch die Berichte über die damalige Zeit betreffen in erster Linie die Oberschicht.

A2: Hier wird die unmittelbar rückgekoppelte Wirkung negativer sexueller Erziehung deutlich. Wenn Rita schon ihren Bruder so behandelt, wird sie die Moralvorstellungen ihrer Eltern und der Schule höchstwahrscheinlich auch auf ihre Kinder projizieren.

A3: Die sexuelle Entwicklung des Kindes ist also stark mit der Entwicklung insgesamt gekoppelt, ein Kind, das an seinen Genitalien spielt, ist nicht krank, sondern kerngesund, tut es dies hingegen nicht, sollte nach Ursachen geforscht werden.*


  1. J. van Ussel: Sexualunterdrückung – Die Geschichte der Sexualfeindschaft, rororo sexologie, Reinbek b. Hamburg 1970, S. 25.
  2. Eine ausführliche Inhaltsangabe dieser Dialoge gibt van Ussel, a. a. O., S. 25 ff. (You can find a summary of the dialogue in van Ussel.)

See also

External links

  • The Sexual Life Of Children by Floyd M. Martinson (may be read on-line at this link)
  • "The Effects of Early Sexual Experiences: A review and Synthesis of Research" by Larry L. Constantine, from Children and Sex by Constantine & Martinson (eds) (.PDF file for downloading)
  • A Chronology of Sex Research

Above was dead - found it on

  • Childhood Sexuality: Normal Sexual Behavior and Development by Theo Sandfort
    • Download of the above here:
  • Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) - chapter 5 - Early Sexual Growth and Activity
  • The sexual life of savages in north-western Melanesia; an account of courtship, marriage and family life among the natives of the Trobriand Islands, British New Guinea by Malinowski, Bronislaw, 1884-1942.
  • The Age of Consent: Young People, Sexuality and Citizenship by Matthew Waites
  • The Magical Age of 10
  • Harmful to Minors
  • Normative Sexual Behavior in Children: A Contemporary Sample
  • Harming Children in the Name of "Child Protection": How Minors Who Have Sex with Other Minors are Abused by the Law and Therapy' by Andrew Heller; From the book Censoring Sex Research - The Debate over Male Intergenerational Relations edited by Thomas K. Hubbard & Beert Verstraete; Left Coast Press, Walnut Creek, CA; 2013 (several pages missing - I hope to fix that soon-User4)
  • 'The Main Thing Is Being Wanted'
  • The Trauma Myth
  • The Quality of Adolescent Sexual Experiences
  • Sexual Consent and the Adolescent Male, or What Can We Learn from the Greeks?
  • Censoring Sex Research: The Debate over Male Intergenerational Relations eds. Hubbard, Thomas K., & Verstraete Beert
  • Social Response to Age-Gap Sex Involving Minors by Bruce Rind
  • Growing Up Sexually - World Reference Atlas (website)