Sexual Deceit is an extended ethical analysis of the phenomenon of sexual identity passing - i.e. socially presenting as X, when one understands oneself as Y, where the variables represent any contemporary sexual identity - alongside identity passing in the contexts of race, gender, and briefly, religion and class. The analysis of passing utilizes and challenges traditional moral understandings of identity falsification, complicating our understandings of moral obligations under systemic oppression. Tracing the intervention of social construction theory on contemporary political understandings of LGBT communities and activism, Sexual Deceit argues against social construction models of identity - notably performativity, promulgated by the work of Judith Butler and consumed and repeated by many scholars and theory educated queer people. A new model of identity is constructed, based on a phenomenological concept of style that provides for a socially adjustable yet rooted notion of sexual identity.
The ethical implications of sexual identity passing are considered in the context of eschatological images of social justice and within practical matters such as military service, leadership, and sexual harassment law.