Saturday, November 26, 2011

TEDxDAR 2011: Let's Talk Orgasms

A nice break for the liveblogging/livetweeting crowd, we are now firmly in the taboo subtheme of TEDxDAR 2011. Warning: the linked video below contains graphic sexual talk and imagery, please do not click on it if you can't handle the subject matter. Okay. We're talking sex, or rather thinking sex as we watch Mary Roach's presentation at TED Global titled: 'Ten Things You Didn't Know About Orgasm'.

You know, there is something very interesting about the fact that so much research on human sexuality took place in the middle of the last century in the United States. Conservative times, seriously unconventional research. Kinsey, Masters and Johnson took away the taboo element I suppose by making it 'science'. So if you want to study, talk about something really interesting but seriously taboo, do it under the cover of a PhD ;)

On a serious note, I haven't come across much research into African sexuality or much research on sex on Africa in general*. This is not good. The Fifth Annual Conference on Sexual Health and Rights is compromized by its NGO-ish obsession with the political side of the sexuality discussion, but at least it is trying. If I could catch a hold of a sexologist working on the continent, I would have these questions for them: how do the different forms of female circumcision affect a woman's sexuality? And: what was the genesis of the practice in the first place? The WHO mentions hygiene and tradition, but (no offense folks, I know you are health professionals...) I suspect that even they are lost in the woods on this one.

*That's not strictly true. If you Google the term 'African Sexuality' you'll see an interesting phenomenon. Try avoiding FGM, HIV/AIDS, jungle fever etc. I could get into why I think this is the case, but I think you know...

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