Sex is certainly one of humankind's major preoccupations, but how much do people really know about it? There are many books about finding true love, sexual technique, and relationships, but this is the first that really explains sex. Rodgers, a science writer and lecturer in epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Hygiene and Public Health, looks at the science behind the behavior. Sex is an intricate combination of chemistry, genetics, biology, and psychology. By studying other species, scientists have discovered that humans are not unique. Attraction, arousal, courtship, and orgasm occur even in insects. Well researched and written with clarity and wit, Rodgers's book explains how and why sexual behavior evolved. It goes beyond the works of Masters and Johnson and The Joy of Sex to examine the role that genes, hormones, and neurons play in the process. This fascinating page-turner will both teach and entertain readers. Highly recommended for all public, academic, and health science collections. Barbara M. Bibel, Oakland P.L., CA Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
"Sex provokes more confusion and controversy than almost any other topic of popular discourse, exceeding even religion and politics. Joann Rodgers, one of our country's most distinguished science writers, provides a massive dose of clarity in her new volume by adducing the most recent and sophisticated biological research to explain the origins of what we have thought to be uniquely human behaviors. Most remarkably, she provides comprehensive, rigorous scientific presentation with verve and so lively a prose that her book is as gripping as a mystery thriller. This is a 'must read' for any intelligent reader curious about this most important part of our lives."—Solomon H. Snyder, M.D. , Director and Distinguished Professor of Neuroscience, Pharmacology and Psychiatry, Johns Hopkins University and author of Drugs and the Brain
"Everything you always wanted to know about sex* but didn't know to ask, but you're glad Joann Rodgers did! (*how it came about, what it's for, his and hers, why it feels the way it does and so much more.) It's a wonderful book."—Sandy Blakeslee, co-author of Phantoms in the Brain
"Beginning with discussion of the various theories as to why sexual rather than asexual reproduction became the dominant method of reproduction, Rodgers inspects the biological basis of virtually every aspect of sexuality. She examines the structure of the sexual organs, sexual biochemistry, sexual behavior, courtship rituals, menstruation, sexual arousal, orgasm, aphrodisiacs, monogamy and polygamy, infidelity, genetic diversity, rape, family structure, sexual abuse, homosexuality, and venereal disease. Keeping in mind the evolutionary forces that have affected and continue to affect the development of sex, she uses examples from the plant, vertebrate, and invertebrate worlds to support her discussion of human sexuality . . . Sex proves fascinating for the light it sheds on the biological forces that have shaped human sexuality. Rodgers brings together an enormous volume of scientific research without causing confusion, and she clearly explains current biological theories associated with each topic she discusses."—Bonnie Johnston, Booklist
"Well researched and written with clarity and wit, Rodgers's book explains how and why sexual behavior evolved . . . Fascinating [and] highly recommended." —Barbara M. Bibel, Oakland Public Library, Library Journal
"By turns smart, funny and eloquent, Joann Rodgers makes one of our oldest behaviors startlingly new. This is a beautifully researched book and, more than that, a fascinating exploration of the biology that helps define who we are."—Deborah Blum, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Sex on the Brain
"Whoa! Hold onto your seatbelts, kids, because Joann Rodgers is gonna take you for a helluva ride. Thought you knew a thing or two about sex, did you? Well just wait-Rodgers will have you rethinking every darned thing you ever learned (or heard whispered)."—Laurie Garrett, author of The Coming Plague and Betrayal of Trust