Shere Hite, sex researcher

Shere Hite, researcher of sex, will go down in the history of sexology as the woman who dared to ask thousands of women about their sexuality at the end of the 20th century. And what if they responded.

his famous «Hite Report: study of female sexuality», published in 1976, meant an extraordinary contribution to the knowledge and sexual freedom of women. And, consequently, also to equality with men.

I dedicate this book to us, as self-affirmation and celebration

Shere Hite, 1976

I remember in the late ’80s, ending my sexology studies At the same time that I graduated in Psychology, rereading her famous Report with tremendous curiosity and reviewing this author for a research paper. His book arrived in Spain in a curious pocket edition, since it occupied more than 600 pages, full of direct information on the experiences and intimate sexual experiences of more than 3,000 American women. Many women around the world identified and felt similar to what they were reading. It was exciting to break centuries of silence and sexual repression. More than 50 million copies sold show its success and success as well as having made it a true best seller.

Masturbation, sexual fantasies, erotic preferences, favorite penetration positions, female sexual needs, ways to reach orgasm… In short, a look at the real female erotica of thousands of women who represented many more. Finally the women spoke and many were upset by it. His critical discourse with the customs and sexual model of the time gave voice to women and reality to authentic female sexuality.

something as simple as that reach female orgasm it is easier by external stimulation of the clitoris than by vaginal penetration, it began to be heard and evidenced then. 50 years later I still hear it in my Sexology office on a daily basis. The complaint of many women who do not feel heard by their male partners in this regard. And many men, partners of these women, who still do not accept the scientific evidence about female sexuality… And that’s how things go for us.

One contribution of Shere Hite was to bring female erotica to light by becoming a public spokesperson for thousands of private stories. Information and evidence always favor freedom and communication. It contributed to the empowerment of many women, to a better understanding of female sexual experiences and to improving sexual health in general.

«reach female orgasm it is easier by external stimulation of the clitoris than by vaginal penetration»

Female sexuality begins with oneself, with the knowledge of your body and the discovery of your erogenous map. No one should question your ways of feeling and much less impose a foreign sexual model and the ways to reach your satisfaction. In fact, sexual freedom helped women’s erotic autonomy no longer depend on men to enjoy sexually. This has not been well understood 50 years later. The machismo is still valid. Millions of men continue to experience sex with anguish over “having to give pleasure to women” The «meet in bed». Interestingly, Shere Hite, with her research and input, relieves men of this heavy burden.

A very controversial fact that his research provided was that 70% of women had not had orgasms during penetration. This caused a real earthquake in the concept of “normal” sexuality and how heterosexual sexual relations were understood. In this sense, it showed that the prevailing sexual model did not satisfy women and that it was very focused on reproduction rather than on enjoyment and pleasure.

On the other hand, the same women who admitted not feeling orgasm during intercourse recognized that they could feel it through external stimulation of the clitoris through individual or partner masturbation. These data meant a step forward and an opportunity to better understand female sexuality and depathologize it. Shere Hite She becomes an important author who breaks old repressive sexual ideas of women’s sexuality: for example, that the woman who obtains a clitoral orgasm has an immature sexuality compared to the one who obtains her orgasm through vaginal penetration. Ideas that had prevented the natural development of female sexuality.

Until the publication of The Hite Report, many women felt sexually incomplete and blamed themselves for not reaching orgasm in their sexual relationships. In this sense, Shere Hite contributed a critique of the Sexology of the time focused on this coital model and on the classification of sexual disorders around difficulties in intercourse:

  • Vaginismus (impeded intercourse due to pain in women)
  • Erectile dysfunction (erection failure that prevents penetration)
  • Premature ejaculation (excessively fast even before penetrating)
  • Libido problems (loss of penetration)
  • Female anorgasmia (absence of orgasm during penetration)
  • Delayed ejaculation (difficulty ejaculating during intercourse)

Therefore it is better to talk about difficulties in enjoying sex than about sexual dysfunctions. The concept “sexual dysfunction” it presupposes that there is a normal or natural sexual function and this is not the case. In other words, human sexuality should revolve around the ability to enjoy and feel pleasure as each person wants or needs. Not around the difficulties of heterosexual intercourse for reproductive purposes.

“He said that penetration did not give women pleasure and that upset some people terribly.

Shere Hite He passed away in London last September at the age of 77 and leaves a legacy of knowledge, freedom and sexual equality. No one disputes her contribution to modern Sexology opening the way to the acceptance of female sexuality in its diversity and complexity.

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Shere Hite, sex researcher


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