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J Sex Res. 2010 Mar;47(2):104-22. doi: 10.1080/00224490903402546.

Elucidating women's (hetero)sexual desire: definitional challenges and content expansion.

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  • 1Department of Psychology, University of Nevada, Las Vegas, NV 89154-5030, USA.


The literature on women's sexual desire is reviewed with an emphasis on definitional challenges, an assessment of the empirical basis for the distinction between spontaneous and responsive desire, a reconsideration of the extent to which women's sexual desire is relational in nature, and an exploration of the incentive value of sex for women as a factor partially independent from the experience of sexual desire. Nine recommendations are made regarding research and diagnostic directions. The article concludes with an appeal for the inclusion of eroticism in research and clinical work on sexual desire.

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