Freud asked it only about women, and he concluded that what they want is to be men. Apparently he already knew what men want, or maybe he didn't care.

I propose a continuation of the discussion, begun elsewhere in IUOMA, of the meaning of nudity in art and erotic art and degrading erotic images, and man's cruelty to man and to woman, and other stuff like that.

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for example. I have this small female dog, and you have a male dog of the same race. Lend me your male dog for some days and I will give you a puppet when they are born. In this case, dogs don't have the right to choose. Humans should, cause they are not animals, they think, have feelings, preferences, and above all there are rights and laws to protect and preserve the difference between animals and humans, human rights, right? I'm deffending the right to choose with that picture...
How does a picture of a woman giving birth (or, as you suggested, being raped) defend the right to choose breeding partners? In Hollywood, they usually put something in the script to explain why all the gratuitous violence they're showing is an artistic statement against violence. Even the president tells us why the planes he's sending out to drop cluster bombs and depleted uranium on villages are doing it to keep people from being killed.
i am sure we all want to be happy, but what we mean by this, or think we mean by this, is another topic of discussion.
No, that's exactly the topic of this discussion. What do we think? What do we mean? Why do we do the crazy things we do?
To be free to live the lives we need to live to pursue our own goals. I guess Freud had some tranvestites in there. Now that women have their opportunities I think he is outdated.
Freud said that wanting to be men was a sub-conscious desire, a desire that women didn't know they had. That's typical of the baloney that this question always leads to. Freud did it first, or became famous for it first, so his name is associated with the question, in the same way that the 3M company is associated with scotch tape. But we should all feel free to make our own tapes and our own baloney.

I've never studied psychology, but the rumors I hear on the street say that psychologists lost interest in Freud and his baloney a long time ago. I heard they switched to talking about patterns of behavior -- how one type of behavior causes another, and how we can manage behavior by using that knowledge, or something like that. Apparently, they decided that the only thing we can know for sure is how people behave -- not what they're thinking when they do it, and definitely not what they're really thinking deep down inside in their subconscious but don't know they're thinking. And then I think Julian Jaynes, in The Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind, said that consciousness and the subconscious aren't what we think they are, and that the subconscious mind is actually very simple, a kind of powerful but dumb animal, and the trouble arises from the fact that the conscious mind, which is much cleverer but is only a word game and not a real part of the brain, can influence the subconscious mind, and often gives confusing instructions to it. And now I guess they don't try to understand anything except what drug makes the guy stop trying to kill himself.
Tilt!
The whole discussion is nullified because someone here above states that we humans are not animals... I can't fly so I'm not a bird, I can't swim so I'm not a fish , I'm not a tree (I looked in the mirror) I'm not a bacteria as there was a significant reflection in that mirror, therefore, as I seem to have run out of choices and the tea I made to follow the fishcakes I had for my dinner is going cold as I have yet to enable the central heating, I declare myself animal... meet my friend Charles Darwin!
I am that which evolution has created from a chemical soup composed of the dust of stars and a naturally occurring spark...
the only thing we can know for sure is how people behave -- not what they're thinking when they do it, and definitely not what they're really thinking deep down inside in their subconscious but don't know they're thinking. that I like, secrets are always fun. We are animals, some are more brutish than others, rape is the consequence of chemical soups, these days that soup comes in packets, often there is a political or social slogan printed on the package. Confusion reigns anyway. My parrot thinks it is time I replaced some of the toys in his cage, I don't have a parrot.
Rod, I'm sorry to hear about your parrot. I know how I would feel if I didn't have a parrot, because I don't. And anyone who thinks humans are not animals should come to my apartment just before I shower (first Saturday of every month, 7 pm). I'm all animal, all the time, but especially then.

Confusion, for sure. The soup packet label sometimes says "what women really want" (as opposed to what they say they want or pretend they want). In the same way that the conscious mind can unwittingly instruct the subconscious to do the wrong thing just by dwelling on it, a mixed-up culture can give the wrong idea to individuals by sending repetitive vague messages. We must try to be clear about what we believe and what we want. The other animals are better at this, more sincere and more focussed, maybe because they don't play the word game of conscious thought.
Not really on topic....I just wanted to mention that I found the parrot/animal bit brilliant! I had a good chicken soup chuckle.
time
There is an article in the New York Times magazine today January 25 on this topic. I can't figure out how to get it on here. The article copies, but this site doesn't paste.
Thanks, Judy. That NYT Mag article is very long and complex. And it's copyrighted, so we couldn't post the whole article even if it would fit here. But I think it would be o.k. to post excerpts only, from each of just a few of the article's 56 paragraphs:
.....
Males who identified themselves as straight swelled while gazing at heterosexual or lesbian sex and while watching the masturbating and exercising women. They were mostly unmoved when the screen displayed only men. Gay males were aroused in the opposite categorical pattern. ..... And for the male participants, the subjective ratings on the keypad matched the readings of the plethysmograph. The men’s minds and genitals were in agreement.

All was different with the women. No matter what their self-proclaimed sexual orientation, they showed, on the whole, strong and swift genital arousal when the screen offered men with men, women with women and women with men. They responded objectively much more to the exercising woman than to the strolling man, ..... And with the women, especially the straight women, mind and genitals seemed scarcely to belong to the same person. The readings from the plethysmograph and the keypad weren’t in much accord.
......
“The female body,” she said, “looks the same whether aroused or not. The male, without an erection, is announcing a lack of arousal. The female body always holds the promise, the suggestion of sex” — a suggestion that sends a charge through both men and women.
.....
For women, “being desired is the orgasm,” Meana said somewhat metaphorically — it is, in her vision, at once the thing craved and the spark of craving. ..... Meana said the women in the crowd gazed at the women onstage, excitedly imagining that their bodies were as desperately wanted as those of the performers.
.....
Wearing goggles that track eye movement, her subjects looked at pictures of heterosexual foreplay. The men stared far more at the females, their faces and bodies, than at the males. The women gazed equally at the two genders, their eyes drawn to the faces of the men and to the bodies of the women — to the facial expressions, perhaps, of men in states of wanting, and to the sexual allure embodied in the female figures.
.....
“Really,” she said, “women’s desire is not relational, it’s narcissistic” — it is dominated by the yearnings of “self-love,” by the wish to be the object of erotic admiration and sexual need.
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And within a committed relationship, the crucial stimulus of being desired decreases considerably, not only because the woman’s partner loses a degree of interest but also, more important, because the woman feels that her partner is trapped, that a choice — the choosing of her — is no longer being carried out.
.....
A symbolic scene ran through Meana’s talk of female lust: a woman pinned against an alley wall, being ravished. Here, in Meana’s vision, was an emblem of female heat. The ravisher is so overcome by a craving focused on this particular woman that he cannot contain himself; he transgresses societal codes in order to seize her, and she, feeling herself to be the unique object of his desire, is electrified by her own reactive charge and surrenders.
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“Women want to be thrown up against a wall but not truly endangered. Women want a caveman and caring.”
.....
According to an analysis of relevant studies published last year in The Journal of Sex Research, an analysis that defines rape as involving “the use of physical force, threat of force, or incapacitation through, for example, sleep or intoxication, to coerce a woman into sexual activity against her will,” between one-third and more than one-half of women have entertained such fantasies, often during intercourse, with at least 1 in 10 women fantasizing about sexual assault at least once per month in a pleasurable way.
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The appeal is, above all, paradoxical, Meana pointed out: rape means having no control, while fantasy is a domain manipulated by the self. She stressed the vast difference between the pleasures of the imagined and the terrors of the real. “I hate the term ‘rape fantasies,’ ” she went on. “They’re really fantasies of submission.” She spoke about the thrill of being wanted so much that the aggressor is willing to overpower, to take. “But ‘aggression,’ ‘dominance,’ I have to find better words. ‘Submission’ isn’t even a good word” — it didn’t reflect the woman’s imagining of an ultimately willing surrender.
.....

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