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September 21, 1970

Human Sexual Inadequacy

JAMA. 1970;213(12):2084. doi:10.1001/jama.1970.03170380058026

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If written concisely and unrepetitively, this book would occupy about one-third the space, be considerably clearer, and correspondingly less impressive. Part of its impressiveness is its style: not a personal pronoun anywhere; only the Foundation. The language is somewhat simpler than its earlier companion piece, Human Sexual Response, but it is still virtually unreadable. Sample: "Women entering therapy in a state of non-orgasmic return reflected complete failure of any effective alignment of their biophysical and psychosocial systems of influence." Meaning? The convoluted phraseology, contradictions, and reifications strike a familiar note. Like the Madison Avenue ad men who gave us "midriff bulge" and "tattletale grey," Dr. Masters offers an assortment, representative of which are "sensate focus," "endpoint release," and "coital opportunity"—joining earlier creations like "orgasmic platform."

The book contains a 56-page bibliography, but the text does not show that the listed material has been utilized within the book, in the usual