Women's Sexualities. Generations of Women Share Intimate Secrets of Sexual Self-Acceptance.

Author:Owens, Annette Fuglsang
Position:Book review

Women's Sexualities. Generations of Women Share Intimate Secrets of Sexual Self-Acceptance By Carol Rinkleib Ellison, Ph.D. New Harbinger Publications, Inc.; ISBN: 1-57224-196-9 paperback; 350 pages, US$ 15.95

The Author

Carol Rinkleib Ellison, Ph.D., is a psychologist in private practice, an assistant clinical professor with the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California San Francisco, and an adjunct faculty member at the Institute of Imaginal Studies in Petaluma, California. A fellow with the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, Dr. Ellison is an esteemed researcher and regular instructor of human sexuality courses for mental health professionals. She is the co-author of Understanding Sexual Interaction and Understanding Human Sexuality.

About the Foreword

Who would have been better suited to provide the foreword to this extensive study of female sexuality than Beverly Whipple, Ph.D., R.N.? Dr. Whipple herself has conducted much research on female sexuality, and over the past two decades she has contributed to the field with over eighty research articles, many interviews and presentations, and several books, including the world-wide best seller The G Spot.

Female Sexuality Research Pioneers

Few large-scale surveys on women's sexualities precede this book. Dr. Ellison pays tribute to two female pioneers in the field of human sexuality research, Clelia Mosher (1863-1940) and Katherine Bement Davis (1860-1935).

Mosher interviewed 45 married women about their sexuality in the beginning of the 20th Century, but her findings were not published until 1980 (6). In 1929, Davis published the book Factors in the Sex Life of Twenty-Two Hundred Women (2). Her sample was split about equally into married and unmarried women, and the age span of respondents in Davis' study ranged from twenty-one to eighty-three years. Mosher and Davis may have received little lifetime recognition for their research, but their contributions to the field of human sexuality research have recently been publicly acknowledged also in Dr. Vern L. Bullough's speech to the European Federation of Sexology (EFS) in Berlin (1). In his presentation titled "The History of Sex Research in the USA," Dr. Bullough included Mosher and Davis in the list of the ten most important pioneers in American sexuality research. Interestingly, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. also was included in this list, primarily for his financial support and facilitation of early sex research...

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