The first researcher to systematically investigate human sexual desire was the Indiana University sociologist Alfred Kinsey, more than 60 years ago. Kinsey spent years surveying people’s sexual habits, interviewing thousands of middle-class Americans in the 1940s and ’50s. But what if all that information had been publicly available? What if you could access the secret sexual behaviors of more than 100 million men and women from around the world?
Today, thanks to the internet, you can.
In what is claimed to be the largest experiment ever, two neuroscience PhDs from Boston University, Ogi Ogas and Sai Gaddam, analyzed a billion web searches, a million web sites, a million erotic videos, millions of personal ads, thousands of digital romance novels, and combined it all with cutting-edge neuroscience. The result is the most complete study of the human brain and sexuality ever, which they’ve compiled into a new book called A Billion Wicked Thoughts: What the World’s Largest Experiment Reveals About Human Desire. Among other things, their research reveals profound differences between the sexual brains of men and women, even though they are both hardwired to respond to the same sexual cues. For instance: male brains form sexual interests during adolescence and rarely change, while female brains change frequently throughout their lives. For men, physical and psychological arousal are united, while they’re completely separate for women.
Ogas and Gaddam have agreed to answer your questions about their research, so fire away in the comments section. As with all our Q&A’s, we’ll post their answers in short course. In fact, you can read them right here.