Monday, May 16, 2005

female orgasm

The NY Times published a story tonight about Lisa Lloyd's (my advisor-probably-to-be) new book on the evolution of the female orgasm, or her 'orgasm book'. I think it's a pretty good piece. The prose is a little awkward at times and the quotes are poorly managed, but all in all I think they do Lisa justice, or at least as much justice as can be done in a 2 page newspaper article.

The two pictures from the article are a little wild though. There's this weird picture:

Then there is this very serious and scholarly picture with the folders etc. It's like she's almost scowling at the critics. Although Lisa's hair does look very nice. It's also kind of ironic (intentionally?) that the picture was taken directly in front of the Kinsey Institute.


cesare pastorino said...

I found that the artwork is by Jospeph Cornell. Interesting.

Brian. said...

So, I wonder...

Lisa says that her book is important for social and political reasons. In particular, she thinks that bad science has skewed the public's perception of female sexuality in a way that makes people think that women who do not regularly achieve orgasm through intercourse (or at all) are somehow dysfunctional, thus stigmatizing a sigificant (roughly half) the female population. Supposedly, after we read Lisa's book we will be less likely to think of women who do not regularly achieve orgasm via intercourse (or completely non-orgasmic women) as dysfunctional since we will come to find out (spoiler alert) that the phenomenon is not so widespread and easily induced as we once thought. Fair enough, but I worry that while Lisa's book might set some things straight about female sexuality (a good thing) that it might not also make men more comfortable with having sexual encounters that do not result in an orgasm for his partner. Might he not think "well, orgasm is not a guarantee, even if I work all day to try to induce it, so it is no skin off my back if my partner doesn't have one." In other words, my worry is this: will the book make inorgasmic sexual intercourse not only socially acceptable (a good thing since if it is not we have a stigma founded in false sexology), but will it also encourage men to be blase about female orgasm?

May be not. But it is just a thought.