Michael Seto is a Canadian psychologist whose work focuses on sex and gender minorities.
He has used disease models to describe trans people, including the deprecated and unscientific term “gynandromorph.” No reputable scientist uses this term for humans. It is only used by transphobes in the context of attraction to transgender people. The disease “gynandromorphophilia” was created by Peter Collins and Ray Blanchard, two transphobic colleagues of Seto’s. Blanchard has published articles with Seto. Collins has quoted research by Seto in testimony about the use of child-sized sex dolls as a possible way to prevent sex offenses against children.
Seto was born in 1967. He earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology from University of British Columbia in 1989. He then earned a master’s degree from Queen’s University in 1992, followed by a doctorate in 1997.
He worked at notorious anti-transgender facility CAMH from 1998 to 2008. Much of his research focuses on adolescent sex offenders, minor attracted persons, and child sexual abuse material (CSAM).
University of Ottawa Institute for Mental Health Research
He became editor of Sexual Abuse in 2015 and consulting editor of Journal of Sex Research in 2014. Carleton University University of Ottawa University of Toronto
He is married to sexologist Meredith Chivers. In 2003, Chivers and Seto sat on a panel at the Kinsey Institute with J. Michael Bailey as part of a multidisciplinary group of researchers in sexual psychophysiology.
Seto’s Wikipedia bio was written by anti-transgender troll James Cantor, who is now banned. Seto has made additional edits to it himself.
In science, a gynandromorph is an animal with bilateral intersex traits and sex mosaics. Gynandromorph has never been used by scientists to describe mammals, let alone primates like humans. No human has ever been observed with bilateral intersex traits.
Seto’s beliefs and unscientific terminology have made their way into publications like Reason:
Even the gender dimension is more complex than most realize, writes Seto, with some people “attracted to gynandromorphs, that is… individuals with physical features of both sexes … other individuals who are attracted specifically to transgender people, and those who would describe themselves as more pansexual with regard to gender, for example, being attracted to both cis- and trans-gender women or men.”
Seto, M. C., & Barbaree, H. E. (1999). Psychopathy, treatment behavior, and sex offenders recidivism. Journal of Interpersonal Violence, 14 (12), 1235-1248.
Seto, M. C., Khattar, N. A., Lalumiere, M. L. & Quinsey, V. L. (1997). Deception and sexual strategy in psychopathy. Personality and Individual Differences, 22 (3), 301-307.
Chivers, M. L., Seto, M. C., & Blanchard, R. (2007). Gender and sexual orientation differences in sexual response to sexual activities versus gender of actors in sexual films. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 93(6), 1108–1121. https://doi.org/10.1037/0022-35184.108.40.2068
Seto, M. C., Cantor, J. M., & Blanchard, R. (2006). Child pornography offenses are a valid diagnostic indicator of pedophilia. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 115(3), 610–615. https://doi.org/10.1037/0021-843X.115.3.610
Chivers ML, Seto MC, Blanchard R (2007). Gender and sexual orientation differences in sexual response to sexual activities versus gender of actors in sexual films. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology 93, 1108–1121.
Seto, Michael C. (2018). Pedophilia and Sexual Offending Against Children: Theory, Assessment, and Intervention. American Psychological Association ISBN 978-1433829260
Seto, Michael C. (2013). Internet Sex Offenders. American Psychological Association ISBN 978-1433813641
Staff report (March 21, 2017). Child sex doll trial raises issue of what constitutes child porn. The Canadian Press https://www.hamiltonnews.com/news-story/7201493-child-sex-doll-trial-raises-issue-of-what-constitutes-child-porn/
Misconceptions make pedophiles hard to detect. USA Today https://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/story/2011-11-15/sexual-predators-penn-state/51225988/1
Expert provides snapshot of a child pornographer. Metro. http://metronews.ca/news/london/245302/expert-provides-snapshot-of-a-child-pornographer/
Ontario police arrest 31 in massive child-porn bust. National Post https://nationalpost.com/related/topics/story.html?id=1256779nationalpost.com. 2010-03-30.
Ont. won’t fund pedophile study. CTVNews. 4 May 2007. http://www.ctvnews.ca/ontario-won-t-fund-study-that-pays-sex-offenders-1.239954
Group objects to study that will pay sex offenders. CBC 4 May 2007. http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/story/2007/05/04/pedophilia-study.html
McIlroy, Anne (February 27, 2009). Hot and bothered. The Globe and Mail https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/hot-and-bothered/article714183/
Brown, Elizabeth Nolan (August 24, 2016). Beyond Gay and Straight: New Paper Says Sexual Orientation Is Much More Complicated. Reason https://reason.com/2016/08/24/beyond-gay-straight-sexual-orientation/
CAMH (2004). Psychobiology of Aggression and Antisocial Behaviour across the Lifespan. http://www.camh.net/research/research_psychobiology.html [archive]
Kinsey Institute (2003). Methodological Approaches In Reproductive Psychophysiology Saturday July 12 – Tuesday July 15, 2003 http://www.kinseyinstitute.org/services/psychophys.html [archive]
University of Ottawa (uottawa.ca)