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Semantic differential profiles of Orgasm and other experiences among men and women


Semantic differential profiles for Orgasm, Tickle, Pain, Ache, and The Way I Feel Right Now were obtained from 44 female and 38 male college students. Subjective descriptions of Orgasm, sometimes assumed to be qualitatively different for the two sexes, were indistinguishable. Other experiences also revealed minimal sex differences and were clearly differentiated from one another by the factor analytically derived scales-evaluation (E), potency (P), and activity (A). Orgasm was described as similar to Pain in activity and potency, but no other experience was rated as high on evaluation as Orgasm. The potential value of psychological scaling data obtained in concert with physiological studies of the sexual response cycle is discussed.

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Dr. Leslie H. Squier's constructive suggestions on an early draft of the manuscript are gratefully acknowledged, as is the careful assistance in data analysis provided by Bill A. Wiest.

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Wiest, W.M. Semantic differential profiles of Orgasm and other experiences among men and women. Sex Roles 3, 399–403 (1977).

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  • College Student
  • Social Psychology
  • Physiological Study
  • Sexual Response
  • Male College