Media & Culture

Celebrating 60 Years Of Kinsey’s “Sexual Behavior In The Human Female”

August 20, 2013 by Justin Lehmiller


Sixty years ago today (August 20, 1953), the media first reported on the findings of Alfred Kinsey’s classic book Sexual Behavior in the Human Female. It was the first book of its kind to explore women’s sexual attitudes and behaviors from a scientific perspective. Although this book shocked the world at the time and many people considered it to be obscene, we look back on it now as one of the most important publications ever on human sexuality because it debunked numerous myths and revealed that women are much more sexual than previously assumed. For example, Kinsey found that women were masturbating, having sex before marriage, and engaging in same-sex behavior, among other things. Men aren’t the only ones with sexual needs and desires? Who knew?

Because Kinsey was willing to stand against the prevailing social norms and moral values of his time, female sexuality (and the study of sex in general) ultimately became a worthy area of scientific inquiry. In order to celebrate this important milestone in the history of sex research (“K-Day,” as some in the media have called it), let’s look back at some of the most interesting sex studies on women that have emerged in the last few decades as a result of the shattered barriers Kinsey and his research associates left behind. Enjoy! And Happy K-Day!

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Image Source: Wikimedia Commons via Proyecto Historiador 2

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Written by
Dr. Justin Lehmiller
Founder & Owner of Sex and Psychology

Dr. Justin Lehmiller is a social psychologist and Research Fellow at The Kinsey Institute. He runs the Sex and Psychology blog and podcast and is author of the popular book Tell Me What You Want. Dr. Lehmiller is an award-winning educator, and a prolific researcher who has published more than 50 academic works.

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