'Homosexual' v. 'Homoerotic'.

My Webster’s college dictionary lists them as synonyms. Under “homoerotic”, it simply says “HOMOSEXUAL” (i.e., look it up yourself). Freud seemed to use the terms interchangeably. But they are two different words, so they must have some difference in meaning, if only slight.

What is the difference in meaning (and while we’re at it, history, general usage, etc.) between “homosexual” and “homoerotic”?

Thank you in advance to all who reply:)

Homosexual is two+ people of the same sex who do certain things.

Homoerotic is two+ people of uncertain preference who do things that make outside observers notice something is kind of gay, and might be appealing to people who are interested in that. Cf: Greco-Roman wrestling, Turkish wrestling. The individuals involved may be straight, gay, or deeply hiding something, as long as someone with same sex interest raises an eyebrow, and intent is not necessary.

Just my WAG…
IMHO, ‘homosexual’ refers to the person, (think, clinical terminology) and ‘homoerotic’ refers to actions, activities and/or objects that are sexually arousing to homosexuals. :confused:
Does that make any sense?

Homosexual is either a noun (someone who finds people of the same sex sexually arousing), or an adjective involving sexual activity or attraction between two people of the same sex…

Homoerotic is an adjective to describe an image, act or person who arouses same sex attraction.

I’m constantly irritating my friends who like to watch MMA fighting by telling them how ‘homoerotic’ it is (cause they spend most of the time on the mat, wrestling front to back). They keep thinking I mean homosexual and go on about ‘how strong & manly’ these guys are! Whatever… :smiley:

Same as the difference between “sexual” and “erotic”.

Front to back is not a common position in MMA. Missionary - aka, full guard, is about the most common grappling you’ll see on the ground. While standing, the clinch against the cage is fairly common.

“Taking someone’s back” is often the final step towards one of the most common submissions - the rear naked choke, so you may see it in a lot of replays. But it’s most often proceeded by a lot more time spent in less dominant grappling positions, like the full guard or side control.

Sounds pretty homoerotic.

I guess if you like getting choked… not my thing really. Your tastes may vary.

Brokeback Mountain = homosexual

300 = homoerotic

Erotic and sexual are not the same thing. If two people slither all over each other, it is probably erotic but is arguably not sexual. Once specific attention to erogenous zones starts with the intent to push arousal to orgasm, it’s sexual.

Most ads for women’s things are homoerotic. I can’t think of any that are homosexual.

Yes. Yes it is.

Common? Usually it requires begging and only happens on your birthday anyway.

Nicely done!! You win the Elegant Answer award for the day.

Except you wouldn’t call someone “a sexual”. Maybe “asexual” but not “a sexual”.

No, no, no. It happens on their birthday :slight_smile:

Is there a cross-gender equivalent of homoerotic? A term for describing things which appeal sexually to lesbians or latent lesbians? Obviously our society is overwhelmed with depictions of women as sex objects but presumably most of these are aimed at a straight male audience.

Well, that’s just the thing. Two scantily-clad men rubbing against each other is homoerotic. Two scantily-clad women rubbing against each other is heteroerotic, because it is presumed to be for the benefit of a male audience.

The way I see it is that “homosexual” relates to an inner, fundamental sexual orientation that “is” without being affected by any specific instance of behavior, while “homoerotic” refers to specific same-sex acts or things associated with those acts (e.g. pictures) and applies regardless of the fundamental sexual orientations of the people involved.

E.g. the stereotypical male-on-male sexuality of US prisons even among people who would not have done so outside or even considered it appealing would be described as homoerotic but not homosexual (unless one or more of the inmates was actually, deep down, honest injun, actually gay), and likewise a person with fundamental gay feelings who has made a personal decision not to engage in homoerotic conduct does not therefore make himself non-homosexual, just a celibate homosexual not currently engaged in homoeroticism.

I knew women in college who claimed to be turned on by gay men getting it on. No, I didn’t perform any scientific measurements on this.

Sarah Silverman joked that the movie’s title came from the studio’s question, “On a scale of 1 to 10, just how homoerotic is it?”