Go beyond the headlines and the hype to get the newest findings in the burgeoning field of gender studies. Drawing on disciplines that include evolutionary science, anthropology, animal behavior, neuroscience, psychology, and endocrinology, Deborah Blum explores matters ranging from the link between immunology and sex to male/female gossip styles. The results are intriguing, startling, and often very amusing. For instance, did you know that. . . ? Male testosterone levels drop in happy marriages; scientists speculate that women may use monogamy to control male behavior ? Young female children who are in day-care are apt to be more secure than those kept at home; young male children less so ? Anthropologists classify Western societies as "mildly polygamous"The Los Angeles Times has called Sex on the Brain "superbly crafted science writing, graced by unusual compassion, wit, and intelligence, that forms an important addition to the literature of gender studies."
What if great sex wasn't just great sex: what if great sex could actually change your life? A groundbreaking and intriguing look at how each one of us can grab a better life through better sex, this book lays out a bold yet simple path for uncovering desire and maximizing its effects. You will learn how to discover your true desires, understand what they mean, and use those secrets to create powerful change.
The best-selling author of Change Your Brain offers a practical guide to enhancing one's love life, presenting up-to-date information, helpful advice and techniques, and twelve important lessons based on the latest research into brain science. Reprint. 30,000 first printing.
Who do we love? Who loves us? And why? Is love really a mystery, or can neuroscience offer some answers to these age-old questions? In her third enthralling book about the brain, Judith Horstman takes us on a lively tour of our most important sex and love organ and the whole smorgasbord of our many kinds of love-from the bonding of parent and child to the passion of erotic love, the affectionate love of companionship, the role of animals in our lives, and the love of God. Drawing on the latest neuroscience, she explores why and how we are born to love-how we're hardwired to crave the companionship of others, and how very badly things can go without love. Among the findings: parental love makes our brain bigger, sex and orgasm make it healthier, social isolation makes it miserable-and although the craving for romantic love can be described as an addiction, friendship may actually be the most important loving relationship of your life. Based on recent studies and articles culled from the prestigious Scientific American and Scientific American Mind magazines, The Scientific American Book of Love, Sex, and the Brain offers a fascinating look at how the brain controls our loving relationships, most intimate moments, and our deep and basic need for connection.
Society tells us that sex is an act of self-expression, a personal choice for physical pleasure that can be summed up in the ubiquitous phrase: “hooking up". Millions of American teenagers and young adults are finding that the psychological baggage of such behavior is having a real and lasting impact on their lives. They are discovering that “hooking up” is the easy part, but “unhooking” from the bonds of a sexual relationship can have serious consequences. A practical look into new scientific research showing how sexual activity causes the release of brain chemicals, which then result in emotional bonding and a powerful desire to repeat the activity. This book will help parents and singles understand that “safe sex” isn't safe at all; that even if they are protected against STDs and pregnancy, they are still hurting themselves and their partner.
The relationship between the human brain and sexuality analyzes the roots and causes of male and female sexual behavior, abilities, pleasures, and skills and discusses the nature of gender
Draws on the latest neuroscientific findings beyond cultural perceptions to reveal how the brain processes love and interpersonal relationships, addressing such questions as the practicality of monogamy, the relationship between love and hate and whether or not the "seven-year itch" actually exists.
Since Dr. Brizendine wrote The Female Brain ten years ago, the response has been overwhelming. This New York Times bestseller has been translated into more than thirty languages, has sold nearly a million copies between editions, and has most recently inspired a romantic comedy starring Whitney Cummings and Sofia Vergara. And its profound scientific understanding of the nature and experience of the female brain continues to guide women as they pass through life stages, to help men better understand the girls and women in their lives, and to illuminate the delicate emotional machinery of a love relationship. Every brain begins as a female brain. It only becomes male eight weeks after conception, when excess testosterone shrinks the communications center, reduces the hearing cortex, and makes the part of the brain that processes sex twice as large. Louann Brizendine, M.D. is a pioneering neuropsychiatrist who brings together the latest findings to show how the unique structure of the female brain determines how women think, what they value, how they communicate, and whom they’ll love. Brizendine reveals the neurological explanations behind why • A woman remembers fights that a man insists never happened • A teen girl is so obsessed with her looks and talking on the phone • Thoughts about sex enter a woman’s brain once every couple of days but enter a man’s brain about once every minute • A woman knows what people are feeling, while a man can’t spot an emotion unless somebody cries or threatens bodily harm • A woman over 50 is more likely to initiate divorce than a man Women will come away from this book knowing that they have a lean, mean communicating machine. Men will develop a serious case of brain envy.
The author the best-selling The Female Brain identifies gender differences in the brain, behavior, and hormones to reveal the fundamental characteristics of male realities, offering insight into such topics as the male problem-solving process, competitive aptitude and sexual drive.
Jordan-Young has written a stunning book that demolishes most of the science associated with the dominant paradigm of the development of sex and gender identity, behavior, and orientation. The current paradigm, brain organization theory, proposes: "Because of early exposure to different sex hormones, males and females have different brains"; and these hormones also create "gay" and "straight" brains. Jordan-Young interviewed virtually every major researcher in the field and reviewed hundreds of published scientific papers. Her conclusion: "Brain organization theory is little more than an elaboration of longstanding folk tales about antagonistic male and female essences and how they connect to antagonistic male and female natures." She explains, in exquisite detail, the flaws in the underlying science, from experimental designs that make no statistical sense to "conceptually sloppy" definitions of male and female sexuality, contradictory results, and the social construction of normality. Her conclusion that the patterns we see are far more complicated than previously believed and due to a wider range of variables will shake up the research community and alter public perception.
This collection of foundational papers on sex differences in the brain traces the development of a much-invoked, fast-growing young field at the intersection of brain and behavior. The reader is introduced to the meaning and nature of sexual dimorphisms, the mechanisms and consequences of steroid hormone action, and the impact of the field on interpretations of sexuality and gender. Building on each other in point-counterpoint fashion, the papers tell a fascinating story of an emerging science working out its core assumptions. Experimental and theoretical papers, woven together by editor's introductions, open a window onto knowledge in the making and a vigorous debate between reductionist and pluralist interpreters. Five major sections include papers on conceptual and methodological background, central nervous system dimorphisms, mechanisms for creating dimorphisms, dimorphisms and cognition, and dimorphisms and identity. Each section builds from basic concepts to early experiments, from experimental models to humans, and from molecules to mind. Papers by such leading scholars as Arthur Arnold, Frank Beach, Anne Fausto-Sterling, Patricia Goldman-Rakic, Doreen Kimura, Simon LeVay, Bruce McEwen, Michael Merzenich, Bertram O'Malley, Geoffrey Raisman, and Dick Swaab, illustrate a rich blend of perspectives, approaches, methods, and findings. Sex and the Brain will show students how a scientific paper can be analyzed from many perspectives, and supply them with critical tools for judging a rapidly emerging science in a contentious area.
Written with the same clarity, directness, and humor that have made Simon LeVay one of the most popular lecturers at Harvard Medical School and at the University of California, San Diego, The Sexual Brain examines the biological roots of human sexual behavior. It puts forward the compelling case that the diversity of human sexual feelings and behavior can best be understood in terms of the development, structure, and function of the brain circuits that produce them. Discarding all preconceptions about the motivation and purpose of sexuality, LeVay discusses the scientific evidence bearing on such questions as why we are sexual animals, what the brain mechanisms are that produce sexual behavior, how these mechanisms differ between men and women and how these differences develop, and finally, what determines a person's sexual orientation: genes, prenatal events, family environment, or early sexual experiences? The Sexual Brain is broad in scope, covering evolutionary theory, molecular genetics, endocrinology, brain structure and function, cognitive psychology, and development. It is unified by LeVay's thesis that human sexual behavior, in all its diversity, is rooted in biological mechanisms that can be explored by laboratory science. The book does not shy away from the complexities of the field, but it can be readily appreciated and enjoyed by anyone with an intelligent interest in sex.
Do biological factors, such as gonadal hormones, determine our sexual destiny after our genes are in place? Do they make men aggressive, or women nurturing? Do they cause boys and girls to play differently or to have different interests? Do they explain differences in sexual orientation within each sex group? Do they contribute to the preponderance of men in science or women at home? Scientists working from a psychosocial perspective would answer these questions differently than those working from a behavioral neuroscience or neuroendocrinological perspective. This book brings both of these perspectives to bear on the questions, tracing the factors that influence the brain, beginning with testosterone and other hormones during prenatal life, and continuing through changing life situations and experiences that can sculpt the brain and its activity, even in adulthood. This influence has important implications for understanding the social roles of men and women in society, the different educational and emotional issues that confront males and females, the legal rights of those whose sexual orientation or gender identity do not correspond to norms, and even standards of clinical care for people born with physical intersex conditions that make it difficult to classify a person as male or female at birth. This original and accessible book will be of interest to psychologists, neuroscientists, pediatricians, and educators, as well as the general public. It is also suitable for use in graduate and undergraduate courses on the psychology of gender or on hormones and behavior.
Using findings from the latest information in developmental psychology, neuroscience and education, this book debunks the assumed differences between male and female brain function and reveals the brain's remarkable plasticity and the influence of culture on identity. Reprint.
Within the basic and clinical biomedical research community, there is increasing recognition that differences between males and females across the lifespan affect an individual's health, his/her development of disease, signs and symptoms of pathophysiology, and response to therapy. This book is intended as a resource for scientists, clinicians, and students of the nervous system and behavior- a trove of practical information about how to study sex differences in the brain as well as a discussion of what is already known on the topic.
The brains of males and females, men and women, are different-that is a fact. What is debated is how different and how important those differences are. Sex differences in the brain are determined by genetics, hormones, and experience, which in humans includes culture, society, and parental and peer expectations. The importance of nonbiological variables to sex differences in humans is paramount, making it difficult if not impossible to parse out those contributions that are truly biological. The study of animals provides us the opportunity to understand the magnitude and scope of biologically based sex differences in the brain and understanding the cellular mechanisms provides us insight into novel sources of brain plasticity. Many sex differences are established during a developmental sensitive window by differences in the hormonal milieu of males versus females. The neonatal testis produces large amounts of testosterone, which gains access to the brain and is further metabolized into active androgens and estrogens, which modify brain development. Major parameters that are influenced by hormones include neurogenesis, cell death, neurochemical phenotype, axonal and dendritic growth, and synaptogenesis. Variance in these parameters results in sex differences in the size of particular brain regions, the projections between brain regions, and the number and type of synapses within particular brain regions. The cellular mechanisms are both region and endpoint specific and invoke many surprising systems such as prostaglandins, endocannabinoids, and cell death proteins. By understanding when, why, and how sex differences in the brain are established, we may also learn the source of strong gender biases in the relative risk and severity of numerous neurological diseases and disorders of mental health, including but not limited to autism, dyslexia, attention deficit disorder, schizophrenia, Alzheimer's, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's, and maj
The controversy over the use of primates in research admits of no easy answers. We have all benefited from the medical discoveries of primate research--vaccines for polio, rubella, and hepatitis B are just a few. But we have also learned more in recent years about how intelligent apes and monkeys really are: they can speak to us with sign language, they can even play video games (and are as obsessed with the games as any human teenager). And activists have also uncovered widespread and unnecessarily callous treatment of animals by researchers (in 1982, a Silver Spring lab was charged with 17 counts of animal cruelty). It is a complex issue, made more difficult by the combative stance of both researchers and animal activists. In The Monkey Wars, Deborah Blum gives a human face to this often caustic debate--and an all-but-human face to the subjects of the struggle, the chimpanzees and monkeys themselves. Blum criss-crosses America to show us first hand the issues and personalities involved. She offers a wide-ranging, informative look at animal rights activists, now numbering some twelve million, from the moderate Animal Welfare Institute to the highly radical Animal Liberation Front (a group destructive enough to be placed on the FBI's terrorist list). And she interviews a wide variety of researchers, many forced to conduct their work protected by barbed wire and alarm systems, men and women for whom death threats and hate mail are common. She takes us to Roger Fouts's research center in Ellensburg, Washington, where we meet five chimpanzees trained in human sign language, and we visit LEMSIP, a research facility in New York State that has no barbed wire, no alarms--and no protesters chanting outside--because its director, Jan Moor-Jankowski, listens to activists with respect and treats his animals humanely. And along the way, Blum offers us insights into the many side-issues involved: the intense battle to win over school kids fought by both sides, and the danger of transplanting animal organs into humans. "As it stands now," Blum concludes, "the research community and its activist critics are like two different nations, nations locked in a long, bitter, seemingly intractable political standoff....But if you listen hard, there really are people on both sides willing to accept and work within the complex middle. When they can be freely heard, then we will have progressed to another place, beyond this time of hostilities." In The Monkey Wars, Deborah Blum gives these people their voice.
Pornography is powerful. Our contemporary culture as been pornified, and it shapes our assumptions about identity, sexuality, the value of women and the nature of relationships. Countless Christian men struggle with the addictive power of porn. But common spiritual approaches of more prayer and accountability groups are often of limited help. In this book neuroscientist and researcher William Struthers explains how pornography affects the male brain and what we can do about it. Because we are embodied beings, viewing pornography changes how the brain works, how we form memories and make attachments. By better understanding the biological realities of our sexual development, we can cultivate healthier sexual perspectives and interpersonal relationships. Struthers exposes false assumptions and casts a vision for a redeemed masculinity, showing how our sexual longings can actually propel us toward sanctification and holiness in our bodies. With insights for both married and single men alike, this book offers hope for freedom from pornography.
What is neuroplasticity? Is it possible to change your brain? Norman Doidge’s inspiring guide to the new brain science explains all of this and more An astonishing new science called neuroplasticity is overthrowing the centuries-old notion that the human brain is immutable, and proving that it is, in fact, possible to change your brain. Psychoanalyst, Norman Doidge, M.D., traveled the country to meet both the brilliant scientists championing neuroplasticity, its healing powers, and the people whose lives they’ve transformed—people whose mental limitations, brain damage or brain trauma were seen as unalterable. We see a woman born with half a brain that rewired itself to work as a whole, blind people who learn to see, learning disorders cured, IQs raised, aging brains rejuvenated, stroke patients learning to speak, children with cerebral palsy learning to move with more grace, depression and anxiety disorders successfully treated, and lifelong character traits changed. Using these marvelous stories to probe mysteries of the body, emotion, love, sex, culture, and education, Dr. Doidge has written an immensely moving, inspiring book that will permanently alter the way we look at our brains, human nature, and human potential. From the Trade Paperback edition.