Tuesday, 17 May 2005

It's all about the O

The New York Times today attempts to get to the bottom of the question of the evolutionary purpose [or lack thereof] of the female orgasm:

[Lloyd’s preferred] theory holds that female orgasms are simply artifacts – a byproduct of the parallel development of male and female embryos in the first eight or nine weeks of life.

In that early period, the nerve and tissue pathways are laid down for various reflexes, including the orgasm, Dr. Lloyd said. As development progresses, male hormones saturate the embryo, and sexuality is defined.

In boys, the penis develops, along with the potential to have orgasms and ejaculate, while “females get the nerve pathways for orgasm by initially having the same body plan.” ...

The female orgasm, she said, “is for fun.”

Or not, as the case may be. (þ: memeorandum)

Vicente Fox retracts anti-black comments

Tenurable inactivity

Mike Munger and Stephen Karlson are having a bit of a back-and-forth over the evolving nature of work habits in the academy. I don’t have anything in particular to add, although I will say that being passed over for tenure-track opportunities does have some minor advantages in terms of the time commitment (outweighted, of course, by the iterant lifestyle).

Now to dig out those R&Rs and rejects and get some work done on them by June 1st (when students will want to be educated again)...

Update: Additional thoughts from Michelle Dion on the additional problems faced by junior comparativists.