Looks at the discipline of sexology.

Melinda Tankard Reist On Orgasm.

I haven't paid much attention to Melinda Tankard Reist of late. Why bother? However, in a moment of boredom I decided to see what she was up to and came across this disturbing entry on her blog. In recent times Melinda has been trying to reframe herself as a feminist and to distance herself from her previous close links to the religious right. It could only be a matter of time before the charade slipped and her conservative moral values were revealed. I am sure she thinks she is a feminist. The problem is that she is also a Christian [...]

JW Waterhouse (2): Anima, Hysteria And Adolescent Sexuality

The cliche is that the Victorian era was a time of sexual repression. In truth it was a time that confronted sexual repression. It was a period of great social change. I have already pointed out that the Victorians waged a war on child prostitution by raising the age of consent and redefining the notion of girlhood. But it was also a time that challenged the role of women and women's sexuality. By the end of the Victorian era at the beginning of the 20th century: 1. The Suffragette movement was redefining women's role in society. 2. The new discipline [...]

Response To A Deluded Paedophile.

Within the last week I've had two quite opposite comments from readers of this blog. One accused me of being a paedophile and suggested I might burn in hell (deleted) and the other accused me of discriminating against paedophiles. Despite writing about some sensitive subjects such as sexualisation and paedophilia, I have had surprisingly few aggressive comments. Most comments have been polite and on-topic. However in the last few days a character calling himself 'Maped' blitzed my in-box with around 9 emails, all saying much the same thing. I've decided to publish just the one because it's a good example [...]

Sexual Shame

Discovering Susan Ullman's work locks in an important piece of the jigsaw puzzle (see Sex negative, sex positive: sex addiction). There are more pieces to be put in place of course, but at least we can begin to see the larger picture. I've mentioned two other important pieces before; the work of Robert Sapolsky and David Finklehor. The pattern that is emerging is that shame is a major factor in creating a neurotic 'stress' complex. This leads to the obvious conclusion that in order to prevent these stress complexes from arising we need to minimise shame. But this research is [...]

Porn Is Not A Dirty Word: Bettina Arndt

Bettina Arndt has entered the debate - or should I say, re-entered, given that Bettina has long commented on these matters. In today's Sunday Age she has written Porn is not a dirty word, in which she defends porn (sort of). Bettina has been writing about sex for most of her professional life. She is a clinical psychologist and sex therapist, so she knows her stuff. Her most recent book is called What men want. In the article she is dismissive of Gail Dines (and therefore, Melinda Tankard Reist) as  indulging in "scaremongering". She argues that in her experience, most [...]

Fuck For Forest

I hadn't heard of Fuck for Forest. Very European (it originated in Norway and expanded to Berlin). And very much an extension of that continent's tradition of sexual radicalism; from the theories of Otto Gross and Wilhelm Reich in 30's Berlin, to the neo-Reichian flowering of the 60's and 70's. This is the new generation of the sex-positive counterculture. I've consistently made the point that the Anglophone reaction to nudity and sexuality seems unable to escape Puritanism. I just can't see the likes of people like Gail Dines or Melinda Tankard Reist having much currency outside the Anglosphere. Seems Europe [...]

Orgasmic Birth

Writing about young Chloe helping to deliver her baby brother reminded me about the orgasmic birth movement. In my novel Wild Child, the main character's mother has an orgasm during her birth; part of the reason she is called Bliss. Of course the Judeo-Christian tradition curses women with a painful birth; God punishes Eve by saying: I will greatly increase your pains in childbearing; with pain you will give birth to children. Genesis 3:16 Tragically this has conditioned many Western women to believe that birth must be painful. Not so. The Indian traditions of yoga and tantra have taught modern [...]

Hypersexuality In Children

Following my last post about the denial of childhood sexuality and the insistence that children are 'presexual'... How do the deniers explain hypersexuality in children? Hypersexuality appears in children who suffer various forms of hypomania. It is most understood in children with juvenile bipolar disorder, but it is also found amongst gifted children with Dabrowski's Overexcitabilities. Although some children are naturally more sexual than others. What's going on? Basically the sexual arousal system is hardwired from birth. It is instinctive. Various conditions stimulate the sexual system in children and they begin to exhibit a number of sexual behaviours. This can [...]

Childhood Crushes And ‘Smashing’

I was watching Kate Hudson revealing her childhood crush on the Graham Norton show and it reminded me I had intended to write about childhood crushes. We are witnessing the creation of a new myth, that of childhood innocence. There's a furious argument happening now about whether or not children are sexual. There is a certain section of the public who are intent on asserting that children are 'presexual'. Presexual? The evidence is clear. Children are sexual. Psychologists, anthropologists, sociologists and biologists all know this. So why do some people still insist children are 'presexual'? Sure, children do not [...]

In Response To Emily

I'm new to Facebook: the result has been a reconnection to the 'Integral' community, especially some folks in SF (I had spent a week in SF in 2002 meeting various folks in the Integral community). It was through this revitalized connection that I was made aware of a paper written by a student at JFK University, Emily Ann Baratta entitled Integral Sexual Ethics. To give a little more context: I visited JFK in 2002 and had a pleasant lunch with some of the academic staff, one of whom was one of Emily's supervisors, Vernice Solimar. Of course, having written Integral [...]