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Why Women Have Sex: Understanding Sexual Motivation from Adventure to Revenge (and Everything in Between)

3.82  ·  Rating Details  ·  451 Ratings  ·  53 Reviews
Why do women have sex? Is it purely for pleasure or the desire to reproduce?

In their ground-breaking book, clinical psychologist Cindy Meston and evolutionary psychologist David Buss investigate the underlying sexual desires of women and identify 237 distinct motivations for sex. Drawing on more than a thousand intensive interviews conducted solely for the book, as well as
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Paperback, 306 pages
Published 2010 by Vintage (first published January 1st 2009)
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(showing 1-30 of 1,395)
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Jacob
Apr 07, 2013 Jacob rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: sexuality
Apparently two of my coworkers were wondering why I was reading this book. Why would you wonder that? Human sexuality is a fascinating subject, touching on biology, psychology, sociology, anthropology, culture, history, religion, ethics, and several other disciplines that I am no doubt forgetting. So, of course I'd read this book.

First off, the title is apt. The core of the book is a survey of 1,006 women who shared their own sexual experiences. Quotes from these responses, giving the ages and o
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Todd
Sep 28, 2010 Todd rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Turns out, there are 237 reasons to read this book.
Chris Webber
Having just read Bonk, it was hard not to compare the two books. Why Women Have Sex is loaded with some very interesting statistics and I appreciated getting something less anecdote and trivia, although the informational data appeared to be less focused or within a general thesis. A lot of the book drives back to the core evolutionary advantages for a woman to have sex and it was interesting to see the bottom line exposed in such a way. The writers had an effective way of dressing down the sex e ...more
Masih
Apr 11, 2015 Masih rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Not a book that you can afford to ignore by my opinion. It is different from many books sharing the subject in having a scientific (evolutionary and physiology) methodology by a well know author citing his lab's many experiments in the book.

Using personal anecdotes and quotes by many women about the subject made it more alive to me. I finished the book in just two days and I love to read the book (listen to audiobook) again.

The only downside to the book is too much confidence in association s
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Lynn
May 22, 2015 Lynn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
My wife checked this out from the library. I started reading it and found it interesting enough to complete. Much of the more interesting claims seemed a little flimsy on the evidence. In addition, biases in all the social sciences are difficult to overcome, and the section on ethnic differences made me cringe because of its political correctness. They conveniently avoided controversy by not stating what everyone with even a modicum of understanding about the subject already knows based on a boa ...more
Art
Dec 23, 2010 Art rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book makes two important contributions. First, is the title. Dr Meston does not confuse love and sex, although emotional reasons (love and commitment) ranked high in the original study. Second, a man can identify with many of the same reasons!

With the evolutionary psychology input, the book stays within the procreation/pleasure paradigm, yet includes reasons like, "wanting to get close to God": a small percentage.The Sacred Female

Had this book been written by Dr. Buss alone, I would have
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Joe Robles
Good book with some great insights into women's sexual motivations. I'm not a fan of the style of study they did for this book, which is to use self-reports and interviews. I think people have a tendency to rationalize actions they take when they don't fully understand them. But I will say that Meston and Buss do a fairly good job of pairing the interviews they conducted with women to studies that show a similar result, which gives statistical credence to the self-report. I'll be honest, I'm jus ...more
Shalini
Sep 16, 2015 Shalini rated it did not like it
I have read many bad books about sex and manage to say something good about them, but not this one. This book found its way into my book shelf after I heard it mentioned in several professional lectures. It interprets the views of women in an online survey using evolutional psychology. The views are from a single point of time in the lives of these women, many of whom are barely in their teens, without contextual information. The interpretation is not evidence based and comparisons are loosely m ...more
Christine
While this book gave a lot of insight into the scientific side of motivations for sex, I think the authors overestimate the role of biology and picking mates for evolutionary advantage. One part I especially liked, though, was the huge amount of unedited anecdotes from real women. Interesting book, not really my jam.
michiri
Nov 08, 2015 michiri rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Even I'm a female myself, I usually doubt my knowledge about women (I'm not heterosexual.) Therefore, this book is quite an eye-opener. I regret I didn't read this book 4 years ago (it would have saved me from doing silly things that are against nature of girls/women.) Now I don't need to feel jealous at why girls/women likes handsome/muscular boys/men anymore. I'm also tolerant of men's desires towards women. In general, because almost our daily choices are being made under our consciousness.

It
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Heather
I wanted to like this book more. It's a good book. I'm just a little disappointed that I didn't learn anything new. So....... I guess I already knew why women have sex? haha.
William S
shud of bin subtytled "in the hoap that maybe won day, they will be lukky enuff to hav a rawmp in the sheets with parsell"
Daniel Dipiazza
Apr 21, 2013 Daniel Dipiazza rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Interesting read on psychological nuances that drive biology. Learned a lot about myself as well.
Zbyszek Sokolowski
"Why women have sex" is a pretty interesting book which describes different aspects of women sexual life and motivation. The description takes a few approaches to explain behaviors. Interesting sentence from book that we are product of countless generation of women and their choices. Woman chooses man with several indicators, like gene compatibility which they can asses with smell. Then different men qualities, like height, voice tone, more or less masculine body build. The more guy looks like a ...more
Yelania Nightwalker
Este es un libro de divulgación y por ende, no puedo decir si es bueno o es malo. Pero sí puedo mencionar que ¡me ha encantado!

Seguramente, entre mujeres, a veces nos hemos preguntado ¿qué te gusta de él? ¿Qué le ves a ese hombre si está feo?

Bien, pues en este libro, los autores nos explican de manera muy coloquial, sin tanta parafernalia ni palabras complicadas de entender, a qué se debe que una mujer se sienta o no atraída por un chico. Que si el olfato, que si los genes, que si tiene que si l
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Jaimi
Jun 27, 2012 Jaimi rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-improvement
I found this book very interesting. Having a particular preference for behavioral and biologic science, I enjoyed the coupling of science and emotion in the female sexual response. I found the stories to be engaging, well articulated, and pertinent. As a Master's in Nursing Education student, nearing graduation, I found the referencing and most of the studies to be concise, plausible, and well documented.

The reader of the audio book was easy to listen to, however I did find her attempts as crea
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Ashley Storey
Nov 24, 2015 Ashley Storey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A fascinating approach to women's sexuality. The evolutionary psychology of the book, along with the research and actual studies completed in the Meston lab make for quite the salacious read. I found myself grinning like a giddy school girl pretty often. And then at times, I felt like I needed to be taking notes.

Do yourself a favor and get this book. It is not limited to the female audience. It is very informative and thought-provoking.
Barry
Mar 22, 2012 Barry rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, 2012
Who could resist that title? An odd mix of the fascinating & revealing and the mind-numbingly obvious. Evolutionary psychology is a discipline with brutally harsh lessons for those of us men who aren't tall, handsome, rich or famous - (or on the womens' side, those who aren't pretty, of breeding age, with child-bearing hips and good judgment of mens' character) but those are truths we all intuitively understand at some level anyway, and at least it makes a kind of sense of them. And there ar ...more
Jonathan Yu
I enjoyed reading this book. However I would probably note to you - future reader - ahead of time that much of the information here is anecdotal. The core of this book is a large questionnaire that has been administered to thousands of women. It also uses a wide variety of disciplines from evolutionary theory to social theory to interpret the data.

If you are interested in also learning about why men have sex, this book is not going to be too helpful. This book focuses almost exclusively on wome
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Manny Delgado
May 21, 2015 Manny Delgado rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Easily accesible book on evolutionary psychology from a womens perspective on the multitude of reasons women have sex. A bit of a tacky title but it is really just another great book on evo psych.
Andrea Kao
Fairly insightful and interesting read. Study of female sexuality conducted jointly by one sexual psychologist and one evolutionary psychologist. It wasn't as engaging as I'd hoped for (after listening to a KPCC radio interview with the authors). A little too light for my tastes. But I enjoyed reading about possible evolutionary explanations for women's "mating behavior". The authors quote the words of women who participated in an extensive scientific survey. Reading this may help women better u ...more
Donald Powell
Oct 16, 2013 Donald Powell rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Documents how women use sex as a currency. Women need to be empowered so they can overcome the destructive effects their own sexuality imposes. Our culture and "evolutionary" influences regarding sexuality are so negative and divisive! The book starts with the proposition women like sex for the natural/biological benefits but mostly documents the dysfunction of it all. Was hoping as serious students of female sexuality the authors would emphasize the hamster cage dilemma created by prevailing se ...more
Blair
Aug 02, 2013 Blair rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've always been interested in motivations around relationships and sexuality and this book really, and the study behind it, really did a fantastic job of digging into the depth and breadth of women's choices in sexuality and relationships. A fascinating read that trashes stereotypes and reinforces some well known truths it was made all the better because, as an audible book, the narrator's quotes from dozens and dozens of women who participated in the study made it entertaining at times.
Ankush Samant
Mar 28, 2014 Ankush Samant rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A thought provoking book that should be a must read for someone who is eager to know more about women, men and humanity on the whole. Why women have sex? Is it an evolutionary drive? Or driven by human emotions? How biology, psychology, sociology and many other sciences come together to explain sex, sexual pleasure and sexual drives? The books answers everything and at the same time leaves a million other questions, for us to think on and contemplate.
Treesh
Jun 21, 2013 Treesh rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I think the biological information in this book is fascinating. There was a moment when I felt like I was a robot who suddenly became aware of myself. With that said, it MUST be read with a grain of salt. There are a lot of surveys done but it ranges from thousands of people to 9, it couldn't be less consistent. It got me thinking about myself and our culture/society with a slightly different perspective/influence so, for me, that makes it worth the read.
Nafee
Jan 20, 2014 Nafee rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
ehh...this isn't the page turner i expected. this may be a better book for men to read than for women, actually.
Veselin Nikolov
Jul 14, 2013 Veselin Nikolov rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Добро четиво, разкрива разни неща свързани със сексуалността в детайли - десетки причини за секс, от любов през борба за ресурси до насилие. За съжаление не е предназначено за читанки като мен - под една или друга форма всичко изписано съм го чел вече някъде.

Интересни са десетките интервюта на жени.

Най-доброто четиво по темата досега, на което съм попадал, е Трактата за любовта на Анатолий Протопопов.
Valter
Feb 28, 2014 Valter rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very interesting book, giving many revelations and insights (sometimes surprising or unexpected).
It definitely delivers on its title: it explain in detail hundreds of reasons why women have sex.

I thoroughly appreciated it, but minus one star because:
- its language is a bit dry and academic;
- it's not Earth-shattering.

Still, a very valid read for anybody curious about the subject.
Daniel Noventa
Science has "proven" it Sex (~Twice a week)=health and longevity! So who wants to have sex XD



All in all a great book. It is written fluidly and with sufficient experimental qualitative and quantitative data. If there is one book I've read this year that I would recommend the most, so far, it would be this one. Insightful and interesting.
Петър Стойков
Прочети цялото ревю: http://kaka-cuuka.com/knigi/zashto-je...

Заедно с още много, много въпроси в Защо жените правят секс, въпросът защо жените толкова често се обвързват и женят за пари, намира своя отговор, и той може да не е по вкуса на най-фанатичните феминистки, но какво да се прави, наука и сляпа идеология често са в конфликт :)
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“WHY WOMEN HAVE sex is an extraordinarily important but surprisingly little-studied topic. One reason for its neglect is that scientists and everyone else have assumed that the answers are already obvious—to experience pleasure, to express love, or—at the very heart of the biological drive to have sex—to reproduce.” 0 likes
“These motives ranged from the mundane (“I was bored”) to the spiritual (“I wanted to get closer to God”), from altruistic (“I wanted my man to feel good about himself”) to vengeful (“I wanted to punish my husband for cheating on me”). Some women have sex to feel powerful, others to debase themselves. Some want to impress their friends; others want to harm their enemies (“I wanted to break up a rival’s relationship by having sex with her boyfriend”). Some express romantic love (“I wanted to become one with another person”); others express disturbing hate (“I wanted to give someone else a sexually transmitted disease”). But none of these reasons conveyed the “why” that hid behind each motive.” 0 likes
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