The aim of this study was to inventory the reasons why people have sex in a Southern African population (Mozambican sample) using the Apter’s metamotivational theory (also called reversal theory) as framework. Data were collected using a locally developed inventory/questionnaire of sexual motives (89 items). A total of 530 Mozambican adults, aged 18–48 years, participated in the study, completing the questionnaire. To indentify the participants’ main motives for having sex, factorial analyses were carried out on the raw data; to indentify sex differences, t test analyses comparing the male and the female participants’ scores were conducted; and, to determine the associations between the motives found and the participants’ demographic characteristics, correlations analyses were performed. As results of these statistical analyses, seven separable sexual motives were extracted: to have pleasure, to reinforce the relationship, to satisfy one’s sexual partner, desire for appreciation, to boost one’s self-esteem, dominance desire, and constraint/submission. Significant sex differences were found concerning the dominance and constraint/submission motives. Overall, the main findings of the study are that, among Mozambican adults, motives for having sex are associated with psychological aspects of intimate relationships that are common to most men and women in most cultures, namely to reinforce the partners’ affection for each other and to boost the partners’ physical/psychological well-being and satisfaction through a pleasurable activity.
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Over the past 20 years, some researchers have suggested that the HIV/AIDS prevalence in Sub-Saharan African countries reported annually by the UNAIDS have been exaggerated (e.g., Chin and Gillies 2006). In addition, with regard to HIV transmission in the same region, other investigators have concluded that the route of vaginal intercourse has likely been exaggerated while the role of anal sex and unsterilized health-care procedures has been underestimated (e.g., Potterat 2009). However, to our knowledge, no researcher has ever questioned the fact that the HIV/AIDS prevalence is generally higher in Southern African region than in other regions of the world.
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Conflict of interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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Vera Cruz, G., Humeau, A. Sexual Intercourse Amongst Mozambican Adults: Reversal Theory Based Inventory of Motives. Sexuality & Culture 23, 425–443 (2019). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12119-018-9569-4
- Sexual motives
- Interpersonal relationships
- Reversal theory