|The comments here have been very funny, and I'm happy that some of the female participants are apparently having rapturous sex lives. But let me add a sobering note.|
Generalizations about this topic are inherently risky, and much of what I'm reading here seems laden with rationalistic assumptions. This is especially true of the assumptions about female sexuality voiced by some of the males here. (Guys, I have a modest hypothesis: I don't think we can speak authoritatively on female sexuality.) But even some of the ladies making comments are generalizing from their own admirably adventurous and rewarding experiences, concluding that women who aren't as orgasmic probably have some psychological issue.
This seems to me an instance of trying to shape the facts of reality to fit what is perceived to be Objectivist theory, rather than the other way around.
A long-standing, if tacit, assumption among many Objectivists -- probably arising from Rand herself -- is that if people only held perfect premises in their heads, then their emotions, bodies and everything else would fall into line and function perfectly, too. This assumption is what might be labeled a kind of philosophical reductionism: it denies even the possibility of any biological/genetic influence in personality and emotional responses.
And it is false. We now know, for example, that depression, schizophrenia, other forms of psychosis and obsessive-compulsive disorders often have a physiological dimension, perhaps caused by biochemical imbalances or neurological disorders. Drug treatments that address chemical imbalances in the brain have helped millions to manage these disorders. How unscientific and unjust it is to "blame the victim" for such maladies, on the assumption that "premises" within his volitional control must be the sole cause of his screwed-up thinking and behavior. And how dangerous to scientific progress and human happiness: I wonder if these medical breakthroughs would ever have occurred had rationalists been in charge of medical research, and simply dismissed out of hand the possibility of a biological influence.
If Objectivism preaches anything, it is loyalty to the facts of reality -- wherever they may lead us, no matter how disquieting the conclusions may be. The massive study of female sexual response which gave rise to this discussion tried to control for psychological factors, and concluded that there was still a measurable genetic influence involved, at least with many women. Now this study may be a good one, or it may have flaws. But much damage could be done to millions of women if we simply dismiss, out of hand, the possibility of genetic/biological/physiological influences in their sexual responsiveness. It could even pose a barrier to finding therapies or cures for those women whose responsiveness may be impaired.
Sexuality is a very complicated business, involving the totality of the person -- body and mind, ideas and emotions, experiences and habits, memories and fantasies, and god knows what else. Let's not be too hasty in assuming what the reasons might be for any given person's sexual inclinations, fixations or responsiveness. We still know too damned little about such matters...
...except, of course, for the a priori axiom of Bidinotto's universal appeal to all women. At least in that fact, we have a starting point for further research.
(Edited by Robert Bidinotto on 6/10, 7:27am)