Sexual fantasies. Everyone has them, but no one knows what they mean. People are curious about and often confused by the things that arouse them, yet they are often too ashamed to reveal their most private fantasies to their partners or even their therapists. In this fascinating and provocative book, Dr. Michael J. Bader offers a groundbreaking new theory of sexual desire, one that will liberate men and women and enable them to better understand their sexual preferences.
Drawing on his twenty-five years as a psychotherapist and psychoanalyst, Dr. Bader demonstrates that rather than being programmed by biology or society, sexual fantasies and preferences are really psychological antidotes to unconscious dangers. Armed with this novel theory, men and women will no longer need to feel ashamed about what arouses them or confused about what arouses others. Dr. Bader sensitively tells the stories of his patients and explains the meaning of their sexual fantasies. In terms refreshingly free of jargon, he reveals how his profound new theory can be used to decipher a wide variety of sexual fantasies and behavior, ranging from ordinary preferences about positions in bed to flamboyant scenarios worthy of the Marquis de Sade. And yet, Dr. Bader's exciting new theory transcends the realm of individual psychology. Readers will come away with a radically new understanding of such issues as sexual chemistry and boredom, cybersex, pornography, and the differences in how men and women get excited.
Both erudite and accessible, Arousal: The Secret Logic of Sexual Fantasies is an important landmark in the literature of sexuality.
About the Author
Dr. Michael J. Bader has more than two decades of experience as a clinical psychologist, psychoanalyst, educator, and social critic. He is a frequent contributor to mainstream psychoanalytic criticism, and his series of highly acclaimed articles for Tikkun magazine has been instrumental in bridging the gap between psychology and popular culture. He is the author of the book Arousal: The Secret Logic of Sexual Fantasies. He lives in San Francisco.
“This book is not only for professionals but also for anyone curious about the roots of sexuality.” —Nancy Friday, author of My Secret Garden
“...an original and provocative theory that is the most definitive explanation I have ever read of...sexual arousal.” —Lillian P. Rubin, Ph.D., author of Tangled Lives: Daughters, Mothers, and the Crucible of Aging and Intimate Strangers)
“In his ability to analyze the interaction of psychology and culture, Michael Bader is without peer in intellectual life today.” —Michael Lerner, Editor of Tikkun magazine
“Everyone can now see that theory can be sexy. Arousal goes where Viagra fears to tread.” —Phillip Kaufman, director of Quills and The Unbearable Lightness of Being
“...a fascinating explanation of the bewildering diversity, and often bizarreness, of our sexual fantasies.” —Robert Wallerstein, M.D. Former Chair, Department of Psychiatry, University of California, San Francisco, Past President International Psychoanalytic Association, and Past President, American Psychoanalytic Association
“I have never read a book that so powerfully explains sexual dysfunction as does Michael Bader's brilliant new work, Arousal.” —Dennis J. Zeitlin, M.D
“Bader's story theory of sexual arousal is revolutionary. It has the potential to change forever the way we understand everything about sex. I believe that he has no equal among psychoanalysts in his understanding and elucidation of sexual passion.” —Kim Chernin, author of In My Mother's House
“Bader is a clear, graceful writer, and he makes his points with rare facility in a way useful to both lay people and therapeutic professionals.” —Library Journal
“An insider's look at what goes on behind the scenes of our desires.” —Kirkus Reviews