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Review of "Orgasms"

By Lou Paget
Broadway Books, 2001
Review by Christian Perring, Ph.D. on Jun 18th 2004

Orgasms is a straightforward book about achieving sexual pleasure. It has nine chapters and two appendices, covering topics such as myths about orgasms, the biology of orgasms, the psychology of orgasms, male and female orgasms, medical concerns, sex toys and spirituality. It is illustrated with line drawings that help to clarify the text. It is written in simple language without using any slang, and contains information and suggestions that range from the basic to the sophisticated.

Paget emphasizes the different kinds of physical response involved in different kinds of orgasms, with graphs showing various possible male and female response cycles. She discusses a number of different kinds of bodily stimulation and the different experiences that they provide. For women, these causes are clitoral, vaginal and cervical, G-spot and AFE, urethral, breast/nipple, mouth, anal, blended, zone, and fantasy. For men, they are intercourse, manual, oral, prostate and anal, fantasy, nipple/breast and toys. Sexologists might be concerned that she does not adequately distinguish between the different kinds of stimulation that cause orgasms and the different kinds of orgasms that can be caused, but for most people, this won't be a distinction that needs making carefully. As a practical guide, Orgasms is mainly focused on how to achieve these different orgasms.

There is some discussion of sexual problems, such as reduced desire, impotence and premature ejaculation, but it doesn't go into much detail, and people with those issues will probably want to seek out more specialized self-help books. Paget's chapter on psychology contains standard advice; communication between couples is important, and both men and women should remember to be romantic rather than simply expecting one's partner to be ready for sex with no preparation. Equally good advice is to create some psychological space for romance and sex, and to put aside the rest of one's worries and concerns that can spoil the experience. While this may be true, Paget does not say much about how to stop worrying.

The final chapter on spiritual sex is largely based on eastern ideas of tantra, She promises that "Tantric students fine-tune their senses so that each becomes one with the universe and their partner." The drawings show tantric energy slowing in circles from one person to another. Even those who are not particularly interested in eastern religions might want to at least experiment with her suggestions to see whether they can bring greater pleasure and intimacy. After all, if it is indeed possible to achieve spiritual ecstasy through these methods, that would be a wonderful result, and even if it doesn't work, it might at least be fun trying.


2004 Christian Perring. All rights reserved.


Christian Perring, Ph.D., is Academic Chair of the Arts & Humanities Division and Chair of the Philosophy Department at Dowling College, Long Island. He is also editor of Metapsychology Online Review.  His main research is on philosophical issues in medicine, psychiatry and psychology.