Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Data Explains It All

Several people have commneted that I have a pervy blog. However, I really don't think I talk about sex all that much or post inappropriate photos of scandally clad women. And yet the reputation stands. (I've said it many times, I'm not a perv.)

I do think I have a pretty healthy attitude towards sex, and while I'm not a perve, I'm also not a prude. Sex can be fun (and should be) and it's fascinating to me. As a former (very bad) English Major, I find it fun to notice all the double entendres, I love that language can be used to make people think of something other than what is written literally on the page. Maybe that's why it tends to be (one of) my favorite subjects.

I also think it comes with my ubringing. My parents were pretty closed mouth about the subject around us, but they never made any reference to sex being a sin. Sex was something of value in their eyes. So while the never openly encouraged me, they never denounced it. In Judaism, sex between a married couple is actually mitzvah, unlike in Christianity, chastity isn't a virtue. In fact unlike Christianity of the Middle Ages, where the most learned men of indistinguished background became monks and thus led a life of celibacy, in Judaism the most prominent scholars (the rabbis)tended to marry women who were better off and produce a lot of children.

With the emphasis of sex as a positive, instead of a negative it's not hard to see why Jewish women(religious or not) tend to have a more blase view of sex, than their Christian or Muslim counterparts. So it was not surprising to read the following:
3. Jews and agnostics are 20 percent more sexually active than Catholics and Protestants.

The study that produced this statistic also found that Baptists have slightly more sex than the national average, while "Presbyterians and Lutherans are slightly below average." "There's more shame and guilt with the Christian religions," says Herbenick, who is also the author of Because It Feels Good: A Woman's Guide to Sexual Pleasure and Satisfaction. "The Jewish religion tends to be more permissive about sexuality." Another study found that over twice as many observant married Jewish women reported having sex three to six times per week as married women in general.

John Robinson and Godbey, G. (1998): No Sex, Please ... We're College Graduates. American Demographics, 20 (18-23)

Ellen Labinsky et al. (2009): Observant Married Jewish Women and Sexual Life: An Empirical Study. Conversations 5, 37-59 ---
Adding to this you have the following statistic:
4. People with Associate in Arts degrees have 32 percent more sex than people with advanced college degrees and people who did not finish high school.

According to a University of Chicago study, those with graduate degrees and those who never finished high school are tied, both groups claiming to have sex on average about once a week or 52 times per year. But those with Associate in Arts degrees claim to have sex 69.5 times per year.

James Davis et al. (2006): American Sexual Behavior: Trends, Socio-Demographic Differences, and Risk Behavior. National Opinion Research Center/University of Chicago General Social Survey Topical Report No. 25
So it makes perfect sense why, I write so frequently about the topic. The data supports it.

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