That's just one part of a massive article from The Times of London regarding female sexuality. It seems it's more complicated than most would like.
Also, perhaps for the first time in research history, violating the Althouse rule for research studies, women are described in negative terms when compared to men:
Meana spoke broadly and not only about her dyspareunic patients when she said: “Female desire is not governed by the relational factors that we like to think rule women’s sexuality as opposed to men’s.’’ She finished a small qualitative study in the past year consisting of long interviews with 20 women in marriages that were sexually troubled. Although bad relationships often kill desire, she argued, good ones don’t guarantee it. The generally accepted therapeutic notion that for women, incubating intimacy leads to better sex is, said Meana, often misguided. “Really, women’s desire is not relational, it’s narcissistic,’’ she said. It is dominated by the yearning to be the object of erotic admiration and sexual need. Still on the subject of narcissism, she talked about research indicating that in comparison with men, women’s erotic fantasies centre less on giving pleasure and more on getting it. “When it comes to desire,” she added, “women may be far less relational than men.”
Quick, somebody needs to spin that kind of narcissism as being healthier and more validating than the male habit of fantasizing more about 'giving' rather than 'getting' pleasure.
Another section of the article that's bound to spark conversation and controversy is this bit:
After Meana’s mention of women’s wish to be pinned against a wall, we discussed rape fantasies. 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 a third and over a half of women have entertained these fantasies, often during intercourse, with at least 1 in 10 women fantasising about sexual assault at least once per month in a pleasurable way.
The appeal is, above all, paradoxical, said Meana: 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 said. “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 doesn’t reflect the woman’s imagining of an ultimately willing surrender.”
Chivers, too, has struggled over language about this topic. As soon as I asked her about rape fantasies, she took my pen and wrote “semantics” in the margin of my notes. “The word rape comes with gargantuan amounts of baggage,” she said. “I walk a fine line, politically and personally, talking frankly about this subject. I would never, never want to deliver the message to anyone that they have the right to take away a woman’s autonomy over her body. I hammer home with my students, ‘Arousal is not consent’. It’s the wish to be beyond will, beyond thought,” said Chivers about such fantasies. “To be all in the mid-brain.”
There's no safe way for me to address this subject, other than possibly to say that this is both kinda messed up, but also makes some sense from an evolutionary psychology standpoint (and to reiterate what Chivers says, there is no justification for sex without consent, even if some women respond physically in that situation).
(also, who am I kidding, I could bring myself to an orgasm with my head in an MRI Chamber, so long as one of my hands was free . . .)