evil desires ; pederasty

Juan Stam B (jstam@irazu.una.ac.cr)
Thu, 14 Nov 1996 11:55:37 -0600 (CST)

From: Juan Stam
Subj: evil desires etc; pedofilia
Date: Nov.14, 1996

I'm finding the current thread on lust etc, & pederasty/homosexuality,
very helpful. My thanks to all who have contributed. I have a question
about the often heard statement that, while pederasty was very frequent,
"sexual relations between adult, co-equal males seems to have been rather
rare" (Nichael Lynn Carter 13 Nov). I wonder what the evidence for that
is, since what I have been able to read indicates the contrary: (1)
doesn't Plato's Symposium deal mostly with voluntary, adult homosexual
relations (neither pederasty nor prostitution)? (2) Philo in some passages
seems to deal with adult co-equal homosexuality per se (ej de Abrahamo
26.135s, while in other passages he concentrates specifically on
pederasty; he also uses, I think, many of the same words for either
relation. MALAKOS e.g. can be either a youth or an adult, either active or
passive partner (correct me if I'm wrong). (3) Hellenistic judaism (Wisd.
Sol.14.26; Test.Neph.3.4 etc) concentrate on adult homosexuality, as do
rabbinic sources (see Strack-Billerbeck), which seems to indicate that
adult homosexuality was enough of an issue to merit ample discussion. (4)
I've read that Suetonius attributes homosexual lovers to ten of the twelve
emperors he writes about (I havn't been able to check this chapter by
chapter). Another emperor (I think Trajan - ?) had a steady lover, around
whom scandals swirled, for whom he raised statues, etc, and when he died
he insisted that his lover also be declared a god. Since I'm doing this
from memory I can't guarantee all the facts, so I'll appreciate the more
all crticisms, corrections, and comments! Hasta pronto, Juan