Kinsey Reports

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Two reports on human sexual behavior produced under the supervision of the American psychologist Alfred C. Kinsey (1894–1956) that had a considerable influence on shaping attitudes toward human sexuality. The reports, Sexual Behavior in the Human Male (1948) and Sexual Behavior in the Human Female (1953), were based on in-depth interviews with relatively small, selected samples, and the results have dubious generalizability, but they had a sensational impact, among other things because of their estimates of the prevalence of homosexuality, which were later found to be exaggerated. They were the first documents on human sexuality to achieve wide circulation and open discussion, thereby leading to loosening of previously existing reticence and inhibition about discussing sexuality, even between spouses or physicians and their patients.

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology.

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