Since I've been talking about BBC series lately, I had to write about "Masters of Sex". It took me a while to decide whether on not to publish this post on a Dubai blog but after all, it's a BBC series, the title is pretty clear so you will be free to check it out or not, so here is to free will pitchouns!
Masters of Sex relates the story of pioneers of sex medicine Virginia Johnson and William Masters, "The couple who taught America how to love" as Thomas Maier's biography puts it. William Masters, a well-known obstetrician met twice divorced Virginia Johnson when he hired her to be his assistant in the 1950's. I think we can all imagine how difficult it is to find participants when you decide to run a scientific study about sex, but professional Masters and unflappable Johnson somehow found a balance that worked. The series illustrates the synergy between these two characters who became a couple, and who made considerable discoveries despite the prejudices. How do you explain to puritan doctors that a study about sex isn't porn? How do you find people who will let you study their intimate parts? Moreover, how do you study these parts without any adequate instruments? How do you react when you discover homosexuality? How do you present your study? All these questions are directly linked to the 1950's sociology, and that's what I loved about the series. I could not recommend it enough.
Now a quick overview of Johnson and Masters legacy:
- the sexual response cycle, that is to say, the 4 stages bodies go through when sexually stimulated
- the discovery that women can have repeated orgasms (which implies that women can actually experience orgasm, who knew?)
- the fact that sexual life doesn't stop after menopause, or with age
- a few clinical treatments for sexual problems
A toast to Virginia Johnson and William Masters!