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Lesbian Historic Motif Project: #102d Habib 2009 "Al Jaheth (ca. 860) quoting Muthana Bin Zuhair"

Full citation: 

Habib, Samar. 2009. Arabo-Islamic Texts on Female Homosexuality: 850-1780 A.D. Teneo Press, Youngstown. ISBN 978-1-934844-11-3

Publication summary: 

This book makes a good companion volume to Habib's other works as it provides a comprehensive set of the texts she's working with. (The relevant parts of them, at least.) It also includes the text of two lectures that provide background and context for the texts themselves.

Historic Texts: Al Jaheth (ca. 860) quoting Muthana Bin Zuhair

As I announced in a separate entry yesterday, the Lesbian Historic Motif Project is going to go on hiatus in terms of new material at the end of May so that I can focus on my current fiction projects. This isn't intended to be permanent (though goodness knows the ground is littered with research projects I mean to get back to some day). I'll be posting "best of" selections and other associated material at least once a week, but the commitment to reading enough new material to make there posts a week isn't sustainable at the moment.

Today's 9th century Arabic text is (as Habib notes) reminiscent of Bruce Bagemihl's study Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity in comparing the types of gender/sexual behaviors and roles found in non-humans to those expressed by humans.

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Al Jaheth (ca. 860) quoting Muthana Bin Zuhair

An extended catalog of different combinations of gender preference and preferred sexual roles using the behavior of pigeons to assert that all similar human combinations are natural (though there is loaded language used in describing some of the behaviors, such as “depravity”). The following descriptions are of pigeon behavior (with the implication of analogous human behavior.) Some females desire only their male mates. Other females who have a mate will also allow other males access. A female may mount males and another female may mount females. Some female pigeons will only mount other females and will not allow them to mount her. Some male pigeons will mount another male and then allow the other to mount him. Some males will mount anything they encounter, and some females will allow access to any other, male or female.

Time period: 

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