Bruce Bagemihl  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Bruce Bagemihl is a Canadian biologist, linguist, and author of the book Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity.

Life and career

He served on the faculty of University of British Columbia, and he earned a Ph.D. in linguistics from there in 1988.

Biological Exuberance cites numerous studies on some 300 species (see List of animals displaying homosexual behavior) showing that homosexual and bisexual behaviors are common among animals and proposes a theory of sexual behavior in which reproduction is only one of its principal biological functions. Bagemihl proposes that group cohesion and lessening of tensions, seen for example among bonobos, are other important functions of sexual behavior.

His book on homosexuality in animals was cited by the American Psychiatric Association and other groups in their amici curiae brief to the United States Supreme Court in Lawrence v. Texas, which ultimately struck down the sodomy laws of 14 states. The book formed the basis for the museum exhibition Against Nature?.

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