Physiology: The Nature of Sexual Response

Though billions of human beings down the ages have experienced sex, the question persists: What is it? The average man's or woman's answers are as uninformative as the paeans of poets, and not until a century ago did medical science tackle the question. Then even such pioneers as Krafft-Ebing, Freud and Kinsey relied on what their subjects told them — and gathered mostly emotion-laden impressions.

To Gynecologist William Howell Masters, 50, this sort of thing is not sufficiently precise or scientific. Ever since he graduated from the University of Rochester medical school in 1943, Masters has been determined to...

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