Mary Roach's irreverent orgasm trivia reminds us that researchers, like porn makers, tend to snap their notebooks shut right after the money shot. Yet some of the most intriguing findings about orgasm may lie beyond its brief fireworks.
Sex isn't just partner sex. Many of us don't have partners, yet keeping our sexual selves vibrant and healthy is crucial for many reasons. It's true that if we don't use it, we lose it -- and that's true for both women and men.
Why do women have orgasms? Most of the time, I'm so occupied with answering questions about why some women don't have orgasms that I rarely stop to think about why women do have orgasms. It's a good question, really.
I often have female patients seeing me because they can't achieve an orgasm when they are with their partners. Seeing me is usually their last ditch effort to try to fix things and usually after several visits to various medical professionals.
It doesn't much matter to me if Vagina is a good book, a stupid book, a book based in science or a figment of the author's imagination. It is more important that a productive, respectful conversation about female sexual satisfaction is actually taking place.
Since Naomi Wolf released Vagina: A New Biography, we've seen an endless number of personal attacks masquerading as critique and a denigration of the author's work, mental health and intelligence -- critiques no man would dare to make, lest he be accused of misogyny.
Dr. Aubrey De Grey, a biomedical gerontologist, has famously said that the person who will live to be 150 has already been born. I hope this means that soon no one will dare to think that a 60th birthday is a cutoff date for sexual endeavor. Who wants to live their last 90 years without sex?
I have not read the book. And I don't plan to. But I thought I should note that Vagina: A New Biography, by the feminist writer Naomi Wolf, has drawn scorn from science bloggers and literary critics alike.