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Latest revision as of 04:30, November 14, 2010

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Hebephilia refers to an adult's sexual preference for pubescent youths; the term was introduced by Glueck (1955).[1] It differs from ephebophilia, which refers to the erotic interest in individuals in mid- to late adolescence,[2] and from pedophilia, which refers to the erotic interest in prepubescent children.[3] While individuals with a sexual preference for adults (i.e., teleiophiles) may have some sexual interest in pubescent-aged individuals,[4] the term hebephilia is reserved for those who prefer pubescent-aged individuals over adults.

Etiology Edit

As with sexual preference in general, it is not known what causes someone to be sexually interested in pubescent children rather than in adults.

A team of Canadian sexologists has published a series of research articles comparing biologically relevant characteristics of clinical samples of pedophiles, hebephiles, and teleiophiles (individuals with a sexual preference for adults). In such samples, hebephilic men are midway between pedophilic men and teleiophilic men on average IQ (with pedophiles scoring the lowest),[5] memory test scores (with pedophiles scoring the lowest),[5] rates of non-right-handedness,[6] rates of school grade failures over and above the IQ differences (with pedophiles having the most frequent grade failures),[7] rates of having suffered head injuries in childhood (with pedophiles having the highest rates of injuries),[8][9] and physical height.[10]

Prevalence of hebephilia versus pedophiliaEdit

There are clinical and correctional samples of sexual offenders in which hebephilic men outnumber the pedophilic men.[5][11][12] Moreover, anonymous surveys of people sexually interested in children more frequently report an erotic interest in pubescent children than in prepubescent children.[13][14]

See alsoEdit

References Edit

  1. Glueck, B. C., Jr. (1955). Final report: Research project for the study and treatment of persons convicted of crimes involving sexual aberrations. June 1952 to June 1955. New York: New York State Department of Mental Hygiene.
  2. Krafft-Ebing, R., & Moll, A. (1924). Psychopathia sexualis. Stuttgart: Ferdinand Enke.
  3. Krafft-Ebing, R. von. (1886). Psychopathia sexualis: A medico-forensic study (1965 trans by H. E. Wedeck). New York: G. P. Putnam’s Sons.
  4. Freund, K., Langevin, R., Cibiri, S., & Zajac, Y. (1973). Heterosexual aversion in homosexual males. British Journal of Psychiatry, 122, 163-169.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 Cantor, J. M., Blanchard, R., Christensen, B. K., Dickey, R., Klassen, P. E., Beckstead, A. L., et al. (2004). Intelligence, memory, and handedness in pedophilia. Neuropsychology, 18, 3–14.
  6. Cantor, J. M., Klassen, P. E., Dickey, R., Christensen, B. K., Kuban, M. E., Blak, T., et al. (2005). Handedness in pedophilia and hebephilia. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 34, 447–459.
  7. Cantor, J. M., Kuban, M. E., Blak, T., Klassen, P. E., Dickey, R., & Blanchard, R. (2006). Grade failure and special education placement in sexual offenders’ educational histories. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 35, 743–751.
  8. Blanchard, R., Kuban, M. E., Klassen, P., Dickey, R., Christensen, B. K., Cantor, J. M., & Blak, T. (2003). Self-reported injuries before and after age 13 in pedophilic and non-pedophilic men referred for clinical assessment. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 32, 573–581.
  9. Blanchard, R., Christensen, B. K., Strong, S. M., Cantor, J. M., Kuban, M. E., Klassen, P., Dickey, R., & Blak, T. (2002). Retrospective self-reports of childhood accidents causing unconsciousness in phallometrically diagnosed pedophiles. Archives of Sexual Behavior, 31, 511–526.
  10. Cantor, J. M., Kuban, M. E., Blak, T., Klassen, P. E., Dickey, R., & Blanchard, R. (2007). Physical height in pedophilia and hebephilia. Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, 19, 395–407.
  11. Gebhard, P. H., Gagnon, J. H., Pomeroy, W. B., & Christenson, C. V. (1965). Sex offenders: An analysis of types. New York: Harper & Row.
  12. Studer, L. H., Aylwin, A. S., Clelland, S. R., Reddon, J. R., & Frenzel, R. R. (2002). Primary erotic preference in a group of child molesters. International Journal of Law and Psychiatry, 25, 173–180.
  13. Bernard, F. (1975). An enquiry among a group of pedophiles. The Journal of Sex Research, 11, 242–255.
  14. Wilson, G. D., & Cox, D. N. (1983). Personality of paedophile club members. Personality and Individual Differences, 4, 323–329.
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