Archives of Sexual Behavior

, Volume 37, Issue 5, pp 794–809 | Cite as

A Dynamic-Ecological Model of Identity Formation and Conflict among Bisexually-Behaving African-American Men

  • Patrick A. Wilson


Understanding how ethnic, sexual, and masculine (ESM) identities form and possibly conflict among African-American men may be important to consider in explaining bisexual behavior in this population. It is proposed that the bisexual behavior among African-American who are primarily sexually attracted to other men may be a function of conflicting ESM identities. Comprehensively understanding the formation and conflict of ESM identities requires an examination of individuals, social contexts, and interactions between individuals and contexts. The current article presents a dynamic-ecological model of identity formation and conflict among ethnic minority men who have sex with men and uses the model to demonstrate how bisexual behavior among African-American men may be examined.


African-American men Bisexual behavior Ethnic identity Sexual identity Masculine identity Ecological factors 



The author gratefully acknowledges Hirokazu Yoshikawa, Ph.D., John L. Peterson, Ph.D., Kathleen Sikkema, Ph.D., and Jeannette Ickovics, Ph.D. for their comments on earlier drafts of the manuscript. The author also wishes to express his sincere thanks to the editors of the special issue, Theo Sandfort, Ph.D. and Brian Dodge, Ph.D., and the journal editor, Ken Zucker, Ph.D., for their insightful and constructive comments on this article.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Sociomedical Sciences, Mailman School of Public HealthColumbia UniversityNew YorkUSA

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