What Is Sex For, Anyway

With the issue of what people do with their genitals looming larger with every passing day, I’ve been thinking about the way people talk about the function of sex. “It’s for procreation”, they say. Asked why, they may point to Genesis, saying “God said so.” Or they may point to Darwin, claiming “natural selection says so.” Underlying even sex-postivist, ethical slut, reclaiming cunt attitudes is a sense that reproduction is the primary function of intercourse — they just believe we’re lucky enough to be smart enough to figure out ways to forestall reproduction and still have the [Continue reading]




Tough Times for Vulvaes

Our Vaginas, Ourselves – New York Times

The Tyranny of Tiny Differences

The Y Files: Hyping sex differences
Cathy Young of the Y Files has a fantastic post on the way that tiny sex differences discovered in research get inflated, by the media and often by the researchers themselves, into essentializing characterizations of men and women. “[T]he truth,” she writes, “is that on the popular level — and also among the anti-PC set — talk about sex differences often tends to lapse into unwarranted generalizations and rather egregious stereotyping.” These generalizations and stereotypes often tell us more about the political goals of the people describing the research than the research tells us about men and women.

Cuteness and Culture

The Cute Factor, Natalie Angier
Angier struggles to find some deeper biological meaning in our responsiveness to “the cute”, ostensibly evolved as a means of assuring adult human responsiveness to defenseless and oh-so-cute human babies.

Cuteness is distinct from beauty, researchers say, emphasizing rounded over sculptured, soft over refined, clumsy over quick. Beauty attracts admiration and demands a pedestal; cuteness attracts affection and demands a lap. Beauty is rare and brutal, despoiled by a single pimple. Cuteness is commonplace and generous, content on occasion to cosegregate with homeliness.