Last updated on: 4/23/2009 | Author:

George A. Appleby, DSW, MSW Biography

Professor of Social Work at Southern Connecticut University
Not Clearly Pro or Con to the question "Is Sexual Orientation Determined at Birth?"

“Gender and sexuality, and hence sexual orientation, are currently understood by scholars in two profoundly different ways. On one side of the contemporary debate are those who argue that such phenomena as gender, sexuality, and sexual orientation are ‘based in deep-seated biological or psychological influences…’ In contrast, others argue ‘that sexual orientation is a creation of Western culture that can be traced back to the nineteenth century, when the terminology and supportive ideology of homosexuality as a pathology emerged…’

The emergent view of sexual orientation – of gay, lesbian, and bisexual identity – in fact draws upon understandings contributed by scholars from both points of view to develop a picture of sexual orientation that emphasizes ‘the perspective that human lives are shaped by the interaction of both of these factors,’ that is, by biology and society. Conversely, no line of research – to date – neither the biological nor the social/psychological – has adequately explained sexual orientation…

[T]here is currently no single ‘truth’ that experts agree on about sexual orientation and its origins.”

Cowritten with Jeane W. Anastas, Not Just a Passing Phase: Social Work with Gay, Lesbian, and Bisexual People, 1998

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Professor of Social Work, Southern Connecticut University
  • Former Interim Dean, School of Health and Human Services, Southern Connecticut University
  • Annual Invited Presenter, National Association of Social Workers Annual Program Meeting and the Council on Social Work Education
  • Has given over 100 talks related to AIDS issues on Connecticut television stations, radio stations, and at fraternal, civic organizations, and churches.
  • DSW (Doctor of Social Work), Columbia University, 1986
  • MSW (Master of Social Work), University of North Carolina
  • BA, University of Connecticut
  • High School Diploma, Plainville High School, 1978
  • None Found
Quoted in:
  1. Is Same-Sex Attraction a Passing Phase Some Young People Go Through?