Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Book Review: What Do Women Want? Adventures in the Science of Female Desire by Daniel Bergner

On the jacket:


When it comes to sex, common wisdom holds that men roam while women crave closeness and commitment. But in this provocative, headline-making book, Daniel Bergner turns everything we thought we knew about women's arousal and desire inside out. Drawing on extensive research and interviews with renowned behavioral scientists, sexologists, psychologists, and everyday women, he forces us to reconsider long-held notions about female sexuality.

This bold and captivating journey into the world of female desire explores answers to such thought-provoking questions as: Are women perhaps the less monogamous sex? What effect do intimacy and emotional connection really have on lust? What is the role of narcissism—the desire to be desired—in female sexuality? Are political gains for women ("No means no") detrimental in the bedroom? And is the hunt for a "female Viagra" anything but a search for the cure for monogamy?

Bergner goes behind the scenes of some of the most groundbreaking experiments on sexuality today and confronts us with controversial, sometimes uncomfortable findings. Incendiary, profoundly insightful, and brilliantly illuminating, What Do Women Want? will change the conversation about women and sex, and is sure to spark dynamic discussion for years to come.

Review:

Initially, I had my reservations about reading this book and picked it purely to humour it. A male author talking about female sexuality - that would be a bunch of data and researched quotes. I mean, obviously, a man can never understand or write about female sexuality as a female author can, right?

I was pleasantly surprised. The book raises a lot of questions, which is the prime reason I would refer this book to others, to read. The book talks about the space where immense love exists, but no urge to have sex. I was sure this existed out there, but haven't read this been discusses, before. Various topics like - a female's arousal doesn't mean consent, Bremelanotide, a drug failed FDA aproval but aims to strongly stimulate sexual desire in women, etc are discussed. The book has anecdotes from various situations, some quite colourful.

A liberating read in some ways, the book comes very close to talking about the raw feminine sexuality - what is and what is not. Nothing is taboo in the book, and a lot of things, I learnt, that I was really not aware of. 

Rating: ****/5

[This review is for Random House India. The opinions are strictly my own and not been written under any obligation.]

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