Social representations of female orgasm

Maya Lavie-Ajayi, Hélène Joffe

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

37 Scopus citations

Abstract

This study examines women's social representations of female orgasm. Fifty semi-structured interviews were conducted with British women. The data were thematically analysed and compared with the content of female orgasm-related writing in two women's magazines over a 30-year period. The results indicate that orgasm is deemed the goal of sex with emphasis on its physiological dimension. However, the women and the magazines graft onto this scientifically driven representation the importance of relational and emotive aspects of orgasm. For the women, particularly those who experience themselves as having problems with orgasm, the scientifically driven representations induce feelings of failure, but are also resisted. The findings highlight the role played by the social context in women's subjective experience of their sexual health.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)98-107
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Health Psychology
Volume14
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2009
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Female orgasm
  • Magazine portrayal
  • Social representations

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Social representations of female orgasm'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this