Last updated on: 1/23/2012 | Author: ProCon.org

Havelock Ellis, MD Biography

Title:
Physician
Position:
Pro to the question "Is Sexual Orientation Determined at Birth?"
Reasoning:

“[In England and the United States] all our traditions and all our moral ideals, as well as the law, are energetically opposed to every manifestation of homosexual passion. It requires a very strong impetus to go against this compact social force which on every side constrains the individual into the paths of heterosexual love. That impetus, in a well-bred individual who leads the normal life of his fellow-men and who feels the ordinary degree of respect for the social feeling surrounding him, can only be supplied by a fundamental—usually, it is probably, inborn,—perversion of the sexual instinct, rendering the individual organically abnormal.”

Cowritten with John Addington Symonds, Sexual Inversion, 1897

Involvement and Affiliations:
  • Former staff member, Westminster Review
  • Former member, Fellowship of New Life
  • Founder, Fabian Group
Education:
  • MD, St. Thomas’s Hospital (Southwark, United Kingdom)
Other:
  • Died on July 8, 1939
  • Legal name was Henry Havelock Ellis
  • Ellis was aware that his wife engaged in lesbian relationships during their marriage
  • Confessed to a fascination with women urinating in his autobiography My Life