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Stories by Jesse Bering

My lust: A Valentine's Day confession and the psychology of infatuation

Author’s Note: The following was originally posted at The Psychologist Web site as part of their "Sin Week." Once you've read my confession on the sin of lust, be sure to check out my colleagues' shameful confessions about their own gluttony, sloth, pride, wrath, envy and greed at the BPS Research Digest ...

February 14, 2011 — Jesse Bering

The fattest ape: An evolutionary tale of human obesity

Long before I began stockpiling a rather eclectic collection of curiously homoerotic Men’s Fitness magazines in my closet as a randy teenager, decades still before the global pornification of the 21st -century Internet age, my tender childhood libido found a secret refuge amidst the colorful scenes contained in a handful of old university textbooks placed happily among my parents’ bookshelves in the family room of our home...

November 2, 2010 — Jesse Bering

Being Suicidal: What It Feels Like to Want to Kill Yourself

One of the more fascinating psychotic conditions in the medical literature is known as Cotard’s syndrome, a rare disorder, usually recoverable, in which the primary symptom is a “delusion of negation.” According to researchers David Cohen and Angèle Consoli of the Université Pierre et Marie Curie, many patients with Cotard’s syndrome are absolutely convinced, without even the slimmest of doubts, that they are already dead...

October 20, 2010 — Jesse Bering

Is your child a "prehomosexual"? Forecasting adult sexual orientation

There are signs, some would say omens, glimmering in certain children’s demeanors that, probably ever since there were children, have caused parents’ brows to crinkle with worry, precipitated forced conversations with nosy mothers-in-law, strained marriages and ushered untold numbers into the deep covenant of sexual denial...

September 15, 2010 — Jesse Bering

Polyamory chic, gay jealousy and the evolution of a broken heart

There’s a strange whiff in the media air, a sort of polyamory chic in which liberally minded journalists, an aggregate mass of antireligious pundits, and even scientists themselves have begun encouraging readers and viewers to use evolutionary theory to revisit and revise their sexual attitudes and, more importantly, their behaviors in ways that fit their animal libidos more happily.Much of this discussion is being fueled by Christopher Ryan and Cacilda Jethá’s scintillating new book Sex at Dawn , which explores how our modern, God-ridden, puritanical society conflicts with our species’ evolutionary design, a tension making us pathologically ashamed of sex...

August 25, 2010 — Jesse Bering

One reason why humans are special and unique: We masturbate. A lot

There must be something in the water here in Lanesboro, Minnesota, because last night I dreamt of an encounter with a very muscular African-American centaur, an orgiastic experience with – gasp – drunken members of the opposite sex and (as if that weren’t enough) then being asked by my hostess to wear a white wedding dress while giving a scientific keynote presentation...

June 22, 2010 — Jesse Bering

Studying the elusive “fag hag”: Women who like men who like men

As a decades-long fan of The Golden Girls , I was saddened to learn of the death of Rue McClanahan last week. In fact, I think I genuinely shed a palpable, detectable tear, which is something I can’t remember ever doing on the death of a celebrity, with the exception perhaps of Bea Arthur and Estelle Getty...

June 7, 2010 — Jesse Bering
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Scientific American Health & Medicine

Scientific American Health & Medicine