Human Sexuality: Meeting Your Basic Needs / Edition 1

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Human Sexuality is an accessible, comprehensive introduction to human sexuality as it relates to basic human needs. Major concepts discussed are neither over simplified, not overly technical. This book discusses all aspects of human sexuality—from sexual anatomy and sexual dysfunction to gender roles and sexual orientation—in terms of five different categories: Physical Needs, Social Needs, Emotional Needs, Spiritual Needs, and Cognitive Needs. For health professionals, sexual health professionals, or anyone interested in a book that emphasizes the totality of human sexuality.
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Editorial Reviews

Written expressly for the introductory college Human Sexuality course, this illustrated text adopts a sensitive approach to sexual orientation, race, culture, religion, and other differences. Students are provided with information concerning the physical, social, emotional, spiritual, and cognitive aspects of human sexuality. The volume's 20 chapters cover the full array of basic issues in human sexuality; most chapters also include information on sexual health, online resources, and cross-cultural perspectives. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780130326584
  • Publisher: Prentice Hall
  • Publication date: 3/28/2002
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 674
  • Product dimensions: 9.04 (w) x 10.74 (h) x 1.18 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface xxiii
About The Authors xxix
Chapter 1 Finding Your Way in a Diverse World 2
Chapter 2 Human Sexual Anatomy and Physiology 26
Chapter 3 Sexual Arousal and Response 74
Chapter 4 Sexual Dysfunctions and Therapies 100
Chapter 5 Conception, Pregnancy, and Birth 132
Chapter 6 Contraception and Abortion 166
Chapter 7 Sexually Transmitted Infections 200
Chapter 8 Social Control of Sexuality 236
Chapter 9 Sex Across the Life Span 262
Chapter 10 Sex and Gender 292
Chapter 11 Sexual Orientation 322
Chapter 12 Consensual Sexual Behavior 346
Chapter 13 Sexual Coercion 372
Chapter 14 The Business of Sex 412
Chapter 15 Sex and Love 438
Chapter 16 Sex and Heartache 474
Chapter 17 Sexuality, Spirituality and Religious Traditions 498
Chapter 18 Sexual Politics and Legal Issues 518
Chapter 19 Sexuality Education 548
Chapter 20 Defining Responsibility in a Changing World 564
Glossary 589
References 603
Credits 649
Name Index 653
Subject Index 663
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We all know that the Human Sexuality course is one of the most popular courses on campus. Why? Let's face it, most people have an interest in sex and want to know what this course is all about. When you think of human sexuality, what comes to mind? You might think about the physical act of sex, romance, relationships, childrearing, contraception, or love, just to name a few. We hope to demonstrate that human sexuality encompasses a wide range of feelings, behaviors, attitudes and thought-processes. Human sexuality consists of far more than the obvious physical responses involved. Social interaction, emotional commitment, spiritual contemplation, and cognitive decision-making are all involved. Our goal in writing Human Sexuality: Meeting Your Basic Needs is to provide the student with information concerning these five human needs in a style that is clear, readable and useful, both for their present studies and as a foundation for future decision-making. Organizing the information in this way helps readers gain a greater understanding of the subject matter as well as take a more proactive approach to their sexuality.

As you embark upon your journey through Human Sexuality: Meeting Your Basic Needs, you will see how we consistently emphasize the connections among these five dimensions of sexuality. Our goal in creating this organization, is to ensure that the reader gain the greatest understanding of sexuality and have the ability to apply it to his or her own personal life. While most students have an intrinsic interest in sex, this interest may not survive a dull recitation of data and statistics. Our conceptual frameworkpersonalizes the subject matter and makes it more compelling, meeting the challenge of presenting information in a way that is neither too simplified and patronizing, nor overly technical and inaccessible. This style of presentation provides instructors maximum flexibility in promoting student curiosity and imagination. We challenge students' preconceptions, stimulate their intellects, and promote responsible sexual decision-making.


Throughout the text we have maintained a nonjudgmental perspective sensitive to the wide range of cultures, beliefs, values, and attitudes that exist in the world today. Gay, lesbian, and bisexual issues are discussed in Chapter 11, "Sexual Orientation," and are also integrated throughout the text. Abstinence is presented as a viable option in the discussion of sexual behaviors and sexual decision making. Sexuality is considered from a multicultural perspective. The text also reflects the diversity of ethnic backgrounds, socioeconomic status, and spiritual beliefs of its readers and the societies in which they live.


Because communication is such an essential aspect of human sexuality, we have included this topic in appropriate areas throughout the text. In Chapter 2, for example, a box entitled "There Are No Stupid Questions" describes how to talk with your physician about cancer care. Chapter 7 includes a figure entitled "How We Talk About AIDS." Chapter 10 discusses gender differences in communication and online gender identity. Chapter 13 emphasizes communication as a tool for avoiding unwanted sexual advances. Chapter 15 features a section on intimacy, love, and sexual communication that covers both verbal and nonverbal communication. Chapter 19 includes a box on talking to your children about sex.


Throughout history, but especially in the past several decades, advances in technology have had a major impact on all areas of life, including sexuality. The text addresses the growing importance of the global virtual society created by the Internet in features entitled "Exploring Sexuality Online." In addition, suggested Web sites related to the content of each chapter are included on the Web site for this text.


Human Sexuality: Meeting Your Basic Needs emphasizes the importance of a proactive approach to sexual health in today's world. We intend to provide students with the best, most comprehensive information to help them safeguard their sexual and reproductive health. There is extensive discussion of health-related topics, including HIV/AIDS and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs), the various forms of contraception, sexuality and disabilities, and disorders of the reproductive tract. The discussion on contraceptives cover their effectiveness (including protection against STIs), advantages, disadvantages, and the cost concerns for each type. You will find "Sexual Health and You" boxes throughout the text.


The evolutionary perspective, drawn from Charles Darwin's theory of evolution, has become increasingly important in recent decades in explaining sexuality and sexual behavior. We integrate this important view throughout the text to explain various aspects of human sexuality and sexual behavior. In Chapter 1, the ability of species to adapt to their environment is used to explain why sex exists and why there are two human sexes (rather than one or ten). In Chapter 3, we use this perspective to explain the continuous nature of the female sexual response and the existence of female orgasm. In Chapter 8, the evolutionary perspective helps explain the cultural suppression of female sexuality and why society restricts sex between close relatives. Chapter 10 cites the evolutionary perspective in discussing physical differences between men and women and gender differences in promiscuity. In Chapters 11, 13, 14, and 16 the evolutionary perspective is one of several used to describe the basis of sexual orientation, sexual coercion, prostitution, and jealousy, respectively. Chapter 15 relates the evolutionary adaptiveness of our species to sexual attraction, female beauty as an external cue of childbearing ability, advantages of committed relationships, and gender differences in love.


Text is organized around the five categories of human needs: physical, social, emotional, spiritual, and cognitive.

Chapter 1 provides an overview of human sexuality as well as an introduction to the five basic needs. Descriptions of different types of sex research are accompanied by real examples, along with information on how to evaluate research studies. This chapter also introduces the various theoretical perspectives on human sexuality, including psychoanalytic theory, social constructionism, feminist theory, the evolutionary theory, and social exchange theory. We return to these perspectives throughout the text to help students understand the topics presented.

Chapters 2 through 7 provide students with a solid foundation for understanding their physical needs. The biological factors affecting human sexuality are presented, including anatomy and physiology, sexual arousal and response, sexual dysfunctions, and conception, pregnancy, and birth. Practical information concerning birth control and sexually transmitted infections is also provided.

Building on an understanding of the biological aspects of sexuality, Chapters 8 through 14 explore its social aspects. Social control of sexuality, sexual behavior across the life span, sex and gender, sexual orientation, consensual sexual behavior, sexual coercion, and the commercialization of sex are the subjects of these chapters. Topics of concern to many students, including sexual harassment, date rape, and atypical sexuality, are discussed in depth.

The feelings of joy, sadness, anger, and anxiety that can be associated with sex and love are examined in Chapters 15 and 16. The topics sexual attraction, romance, passion, jealousy, and intimate relationships allow students to explore the emotional aspects of sexuality.

The effect of spirituality on sexual attitudes and behaviors is examined in Chapter 17, which describes the relationships among sexuality, spirituality, and religion. The chapter also reviews the attitudes of a number of world religions toward sexuality and sexual behavior.

The final section of the text addresses the cognitive aspect of sexuality. Chapter 18 offers comprehensive coverage of sexual politics and legal issues, including the controversial subject of abortion. Chapter 19 describes how, when, and by whom sexuality is taught to our children. Chapter 20 helps students navigate the ethical decision-making process and make sexual choices.


Every chapter contains features to highlight important issues in sexuality.


This feature encourages further student thought and discussion on complex and controversial issues such as sexual harassment, female genital mutilation, human cloning, and abortion. Each box includes one or more critical thinking questions designed to encourage students to form their own conclusions.

Cross-Cultural Perspectives

Cultural and ethnic variations that reflect the diversity of human sexual behavior are highlighted here. Topics include folk remedies for sexually transmitted infections, cross-cultural variations in scent preferences and standards of beauty, and cultural variations in the frequency and duration of noncoital sexual activity (foreplay).

Sexual Health and You

The ways in which students can ensure their sexual health, including breast and testicular self-examinations, gynecological and rectal exams, and knowing what to do if they've been raped are highlighted here.

Exploring Sexuality Online

This feature investigates the impact of computers and the Internet on issues related to sexuality, such as online sexual therapy, cyberromance, online pornography, and Internet pedophiles.

Ask Yourself

The Ask Yourself feature is a self-assessment inventory included in pertinent chapters so students can evaluate and reflect on their own beliefs and experiences. Ask Yourself in Chapter 1 tests students on what they think they already know about sexuality. Topics in later chapters include abortion and sexual values.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Frequently asked questions (FAQs) are scattered throughout the text to catch the students' eye and pique their interest in what they are about to learn. These offer an active learning experience by maintaining a continuing dialogue with the student.

Marginal Quotations

Quotations from academic sources (for example, Sigmund Freud) and nonacademic sources (for example, Robin Williams, Bill Clinton, Shakespeare) are included in the margins to reinforce the information presented in the text.

Campus Confidential

Another marginal feature, Campus Confidential, consists of students' personal reflections. These are taken from the authors' files, with minor revisions to preserve anonymity. Topics include the decision to remain a virgin, sexual attraction as a basis for a relationship, and the revelation that a close friend is gay.


Companion Website

An extensive, dynamic Web site has been created by Sandra Carom the University of Maine at Orono, to provide ongoing, up-to-date support for this textbook. Log on and explore a wealth of web resources to increase your understanding of issues related to sexuality and healthy decision making. Students have access to the free online study guide, which includes outlines for each chapter; labeling exercises; and multiple choice, fill-in-the-blank, and essay questions for each chapter. Students will have access to information on sexual health and issues relating to sexuality on the world wide web. An Interactive Student Survey Module enables students to learn more about their personal views and attitudes.


Instructor's Manual

Prepared by Stephanie Chisolm, James Madison University, this supplement provides resources for each chapter of the text: summary, review of major concepts, lecture suggestions and topic outlines, suggestions for classroom discussions, and additional resource materials.

Test Item File

Prepared by Carol Galletly, Ohio State University. This test item file contains over 2,000 questions in multiple choice, true/false, and essay format, covering factual, conceptual, and applied material from the text.

Prentice Hall Custom Test

This computerized version of the test item file, available in both IBM and Macintosh formats, allows full editing of questions and the addition of instructor-generated items. Other special features include random generation, scrambling question order, and test preview before printing.

Power Point Presentation Slides

The power points available for this text include charts and graphs from the text, along with lecture outlines tied to each chapter. They are available on the Web site.

Distance Learning Solutions

For instructors interested in distance learning, Prentice Hall offers courses in Blackboard. See your local Prentice Hall representative or visit our special demonstration for more information.

Films for the Arts and Humanities

With a qualifying order, films in the discipline of psychology are available. Please contact your local representative for a complete listing.

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