To those who are sex-negative, also known as antisexualist, prude, puritan, Victorian, and prohibitionist, sex is often seen as the root of all evil, or else as something too sacred to allow casual or irreverant exercise of. They see the minds, souls, and bodies of people as belonging to God (or gods), or else, to their spouses, families, communities, nations, civilizations, or humanity as a whole.
Some proponents of sex-positivity claim that under the Western, Christian tradition, sex is seen as a destructive force except when it is redeemed by the saving grace of procreation, and sexual pleasure is seen as sinful. Sexual acts are ranked hierarchically, with procreative marital heterosexuality at the top of the hierarchy and masturbation, homosexuality and other sexualities that deviate from societal norms closer to the bottom. Medicine and psychiatry are said to have also contributed to sex-negativity, as they may, from time to time, designate some forms of sexuality that appear on the bottom of this hierarchy as being pathological (see Mental illness). However, Western societies which predate Christian influence, such as ancient Greece, have often endorsed forms of sexuality that strongly conflict with Christian beliefs. For instance, Socrates, certainly not the most libertine of the Greek writers, supports homosexuality:
Let no one whom he [a soldier] has a mind to kiss refuse to be kissed by him while the expedition lasts. So that if there be a lover in the army, whether his love be youth or maiden, he may be more eager to win the prize of valour.
An emerging chorus of voices from sex-positive theorists who are people of color has provided an important contribution to the movement, giving substance to the power analysis of sex-positivity at the intersection of race/culture, gender, sexuality, class, nationality, and spirituality. Farajaje-Jones (2000) highlighted the connection between white supremacist ideology and what he termed "erotophobia" saying:
The fear of the erotic and of its power, has therefore played a powerful role in shaping institutionalized White supremacy's vision of what it means to be African, to be Black. African is wild, hot, savage, beastlike, libidinal, primal; in short, the African is the very embodiment of all that the dominating culture sees as evil and in need of being policed and controlled. (p.331)
"The pornography business takes the beauty of real love and converts it into soulless, commercialized slime. The porn-fighters protect healthy sexuality with the key ingredients of love, tenderness, commitment, and the privacy of intimate moments."
Canadian University Students' Perceptions of the Practices That Constitute "Normal" Sexuality for Men and Women
Dec 22, 2008; Abstract: This study investigated perceptions of "sexual normalcy" in a sample of male and female undergraduate students (N =...