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Over one-third of former American football players had sexual relations with men, study says
Date:10/29/2007

rmants do not feel that their same-sex sex jeopardizes their socially perceived heterosexual identities, at least within the cheerleading culture. In other words, having gay sex does not automatically make them gay in masculine peer culture.

Dr Anderson, of the Universitys Department of Education, said the same situation was also true for the UK.

He believes the positive portrayal of homosexuality on television, the ease with which homosexuals could gradually come out by using the internet, the ability for straight men to talk with gay men on the internet, and the decline of religious fundamentalism has made homosexuality and homosexual acts considerably less controversial for university-aged men. This had made revealing the fact they had engaged in homosexual acts easier.

He said the study was not biased by talking to sportsmen who were now cheerleaders, which is often seen as a feminine activity. Those he interviewed were selected to represent men that considered themselves traditionally masculine, typical American Football players.

Dr Anderson was the first openly gay male high school sports coach in the US. He left coaching after one of his students was assaulted because it was assumed that he was gay. Dr Anderson is now working in the field of sport sociology at the University of Bath, and is the author of In the Game, Gay Athletes and the Cult of Masculinity.

Men have traditionally been reluctant to do anything associated with homosexuality because they feared being perceived gay, he said. There has been pressure on them to conform to the notion that being male is about having traditionally masculine traits, in terms of dress, behaviours and sexual activities.

But as more men are open about their varieties of sexuality, it becomes less stigmatized to be gay or to have sex with men. It is increasingly not a problem to act in otherwise non-traditional ways.

I see this in other areas of my research to
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Contact: Tony Trueman
t.trueman@bath.ac.uk
44-012-253-84220
University of Bath
Source:Eurekalert

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