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Murphy, W.F. (1948). Sex Habits of American Men: Edited by Albert Deutsch. New York: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1948. 244 pp.. Psychoanal Q., 17:537-540.

(1948). Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 17:537-540

Sex Habits of American Men: Edited by Albert Deutsch. New York: Prentice Hall, Inc., 1948. 244 pp.

Review by:
William F. Murphy

This book is a symposium on the Kinsey Report written by a group of thirteen outstanding leaders in sociology, anthropology, psychology, law, education, religion, and psychiatry. It is intended to clarify, highlight, and interpret the major points raised in the Kinsey Report and discuss more fully some important problems only touched on in that Report. Albert Deutsch, who has in numerous magazine articles greatly aided in publicizing the Kinsey Report, in the first paper graphically and succinctly sets the stage, outlines the story of the men who united the taxonomic approach and the Gallup Poll type of survey, and answers some of the criticisms of those who appear to be unaware of the true purpose of the Report, which was to collect as objectively as possible a large body of facts about the sexual behavior of human males, unencumbered by social or moral interpretations. He does feel that Kinsey deviated from this goal in some respects inasmuch as there are many passages in this Report which bear the marks of evaluation or interpretation. It also appears that Kinsey has shown bias against several groups, especially psychiatrists, and an unusual sensitivity to the criticisms of fellow scientists; however, Deutsch is definite in his belief, with most of the other commentators, that important errors and shortcomings have not affected the general validity of the Report.

It is gratifying to note that the contributors as a whole have been very much aware of the psychological deficiencies in the Report and the dangers inherent in the mythological, completely 'scientific' approach. In the discussion of Cultural Factors in Sex Expression, R. J. Havighurst takes up the problem of the origin of the differences in the scores of patterns of sexual behavior and points out the need for studies of children and child-parent relationships extending from birth to the age of eight or nine, which is where Kinsey's published data begin, and the need for study of parent-child pairs. J. K.

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