Date of Award

Winter 12-15-2021

Document Type

Undergraduate Honors Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts in Mathematics


Political Science & International Relations


Karen Shelby


Susannah Stern


Sexual inequality is well researched in the academic sphere but is absent from the political realm. Previous research has identified that sex is defined for men’s pleasure, that women suffer from an orgasm gap, and that male domination is standard in heterosexual sex. Due to the private nature of sex, sexual inequality is untouched as a personal problem rather than deconstructed as a political injustice. However, the universality of sexual inequality in heterosexual relationships demonstrates that these overlooked personal problems are rooted in widespread cultural misogyny. Sex is one of the primary ways in which we perform gendered socialization, due to the ingrained heteronormative principle that gender differences are central to sex. Achieving sexual equality will rid society of the predominant performance of gender roles, therefore diminishing social inequality in the broader sphere. To improve sexual equality, I urge expedient adoption of interpersonal solutions of self-love and relationship communication; and the political solution of sex-positive, communication centered sex-education. This paper uses feminist, political, sociological, and queer perspectives to shift academic discussions on sexual inequality into political actions.