Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

Book Reviews -- Sexuality (Series on Close Relationships) by Susan Sprecher and Kathleen McKinney

Academic journal article Journal of Comparative Family Studies

Book Reviews -- Sexuality (Series on Close Relationships) by Susan Sprecher and Kathleen McKinney

Article excerpt

SPRECHER, Susan and Kathleen McKINNEY, SEXUALITY (Series on Close Relationships).

Newbury Park, CA: SAGE Publications, 1993, 184 pp., $14.95 softcover/$29.95 hardcover.

JOSEPH LEVY*

This short book on the expression of sexuality in the context of intimate relationships (dating, cohabiting and marital relationships) examines the contemporary studies carried out in this field. While the theoretical dimension is quite superficial, this six chapters book provides a useful synthesis to people interested in understanding the complex interactions between culture, society, couples, and sexuality, while suggesting a set of concepts which aid in better understanding this field.

The first chapter presents the principal modulations of sexual attitudes. These attitudes have, in modern society, undergone deep transformations linked to a general increase in tolerance towards sexuality and a remarkable decrease in the sexual double standard between men and women. This survey discusses each context of the intimate relationship and includes a rather limited perspective on homosexual relationships.

Chapters two, three and four explore the different aspects of interpersonal and sexual relationships. The essential stages governing the interaction are clearly illustrated and emphasize some of the major differences between men and women in terms of verbal and non-verbal strategies used to attain sexual goals. The authors present personal, as well as social and environmental factors which intervene in the interpersonal attraction and the unfolding of the relationship.

The section dealing with the sexual decision making process provides an analysis of the various motivations which underlie the initiation into sexual life and the problems of communication that can occur in the sexual couple. …

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