The Mind and Heart in Human Sexual Behavior: Owning and Sharing Our Personal Truths

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"The sexual domain is not defined by what happens between two bodies, by the dimensions of the bed, or the texture of the bedsheets", says Alan P.Bell, former Senior Psychologist at the Kinsey Institute for Sex Research. "Rather, it is marked by hidden assumptions as to what should be taking place, by hidden evaluations, by echoes from the past". Contending that we do a callous injustice to the sexual moments of our lives when we take what we do at face value and fail to examine what is going on in our hearts and minds, Dr. Bell invites us to broaden our view of sexual experience toward resolving our sexual impasses. Whereas conventional self-help books, like conventional sex-therapists, define sexual problems chiefly in sexual terms and propose primarily sexual remedies or glib suggestions, Dr. Bell takes us down our own "ideational trails" in search of the sources of our core convictions about ourselves, our partners and our partnerships. Frank excerpts from interviews with people in the sexual doldrums or worse and also at the opposite end of the spectrum illustrate chapters devoted to cognitions (motivations, conditioning), the sexual exchange itself (from initiation through afterplay), and attendant transactions (fantasy, masturbation); longer clinical vignettes are interspersed throughout. Finally, Dr. Bell challenges readers to own and share their personal psychological and sexual truths by means of guided self-examination activities.

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Jason Aronson Inc. Publishers
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