THE REDBOOK REPORT ON FEMALE SEXUALITY by Carol & Susan Sadd Tavris

THE REDBOOK REPORT ON FEMALE SEXUALITY

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KIRKUS REVIEW

The ""good news"" that most American wives are sexually satisfied, as 100,000 Redbook readers attested in 1974, was soon swamped by the complaints of Shere Hite's vocal minority; but the Redbook forces are striking back with a battery of statistics (the results of other surveys as well) and personal histories (excerpted from subscribers' letters) to demonstrate that ordinary couples are having more frequent sex, and freer sex, than ever before. Some key conclusions: ""Almost all wives under the age of forty enjoy oral-genital sex, both cunnilingus and fellatio""; ""They no longer believe that sex requires specific times, places, and positions""; for them, more sex means better sex--""more orgasmic sex,"" in particular. (Since Kinsey, lovemaking periods have lengthened ""for the sake of both partners,"" researcher Morton Hunt is quoted as reporting.) On other fronts, the news is less dramatic: premarital sex is up (though fiancÉs still predominate) but it has ""absolutely no effect on a woman's satisfaction in marriage""; and extramarital sex is stable, except that is starts younger. Besides reviewing the surveys and citing cases, the book examines--and discounts--many purported differences in male and female sexuality (""The orgasm itself,"" for instance, ""is precisely analogous in both sexes""). Throughout, the tone is as upbeat and reassuring as a child-care manual, with an emphasis on communication as the key to success. What little ginger there is--spice, even--comes from quotes that just might be authentic. (Writes a ""strongly religious"" woman past 70: ""A husband with loving hands seems to his wife to be like God himself in bed!"") But to the extent that sexual satisfaction is a self-fulfilling prophecy, these good vibes could be good medicine for many, and the extensive, up-to-date bibliography (including periodical sources) gives the undertaking the weight of authority.

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 1977
Publisher: Delacorte