North American Natives



Chiricahua [Eastern] Apache: 3-,3,4,4+,3,4;1,1;B?;A)

APACHE CHIRICAHUA (North-American Natives)


More: Arapaho, Assiniboine, Athabascans, Blood/ Blackfoot, Cajuns, Cherokee, Chipewyans, Comanches, Crow, Dakota, Flathead, Gros Ventre, Hopi, Huron, Ingalik, Copper Inuit, Iñupiat, Iroquois, Kaska, Kiowa-Apache, Klamath, Kwakiutl, Lakota, Mohave, Mantagnais / Naskapi, Navajo, Nootka, Ojibwa, Omaha, Point Barrow, Pomo, Powhatans, Qipi, Quinault, San Ildefonso, Shoshone, Shuswap, Sioux, Tinglit, Walapai, Yokuts, Zuñi

See also: North-America Non-Natives




Opler (1941:p79)[1][124] on the Chiricahua Apache states that “[s]exual precocity is rare and sternly discouraged. The one account of such misbehaviour which was obtained was that of a seven-year-old boy charged with trying to throw down little girls and molest them”. An informant claims that he never heard of sex play, but if caught, they would be whipped (p79). Realistic house-playing is discontinued at age 6 or 7. “A girl should come to her first menses and her puberty rite a virgin”,


Boyer (1979:p69)[2][125] sketches another image: “Today young children have actual sexual relations. Sometimes teenage boys have intercourse with girls of latency age, and adolescent girls are known to have prepubescent and neopubescent boys service them”. Homosexual play, which is quite public, is prevalent, although true homosexuality is said to be rare. Boyer (1964:p230, 233)[3][126] had already argued:


“In addition to mutual exploratory behavior in the sort usually reported in western cultures, among these Indians [Apache], sexual intercourse occurs with very small children. Men reported to me that they had been seduced before they were six years old by teen-age girls. They said they, in turn, had had intercourse with girls four and five years of age when they reached their own adolescence. It is impossible that adults do not know of the outhouse sexual relations of children. Anyone walking near outside toilets will hear the children’s giggles and panting from time to time”.


There is little evidence of masturbation and homosexuality among children. The Apache correct infantile genital handling (Boyer, 1982:p98)[4][127].

Speaking of the Western Apache, Goodwin (1942 [1969:p284-5])[5][128] remarks: “The material on sex knowledge and play among Apache children is exceedingly limited”. There is much occasion for animal scenes, and overhearing of conversations. Free heterosocial play until eight if followed by a seemingly spontaneous withdrawal completed by age 11 or 12. Girl’s extreme “self-consciousness” begins before puberty, while “[e]xposing private parts is strictly avoided, and even small girls and babies of no more than a year are taught not to do it (Goddwin, 1942:p456)[6][129]. There are occasional prepubertal marriages on authority of the girl’s family.








Janssen, D. F., Growing Up Sexually. VolumeI. World Reference Atlas. 0.2 ed. 2004. Berlin: Magnus Hirschfeld Archive for Sexology

Last revised: Sept 200


[1][124] Opler, M. E. (1941) An Apache Life-Way. Chicago, IL. Relevant pages include 33, 77, 79-81, 154. Also quoted by Whiting and Child (1953:p82-3), and Fox, J. R. (1962) Sibling incest, J Sociol 13:128-50, see p138-9. Also Ford and Beach (1951:p129, 180) and Whiting and Child (1953:p82-3).

[2][125] Boyer, L. B. (1979) Childhood and Folklore: A Psychoanalytic Study of Apache Personality. New York: Library of Psychological Anthropology

[3][126] Boyer, L. B. (1964) Psychological problems of Apaches, Psychoanal Stud Soc 3:203-77

[4][127] Boyer, L. B. (1982) Kindheit und Mythos. Stuttgart: Klett-Cotta

[5][128] Goodwin, G. (1942) The Social Organization of the Western Apache. Tuscon, Ariz.: University of Arizona Press. 1969 repr.

[6][129] Op.cit. Quoted in Whiting and Child (1953:p85)