Thierry Lodé

A Natural History of Sexual Pleasure Publication date : June 16, 2021

Thierry Lodé is professor of evolutionary ecology and head of research at the University of Rennes-1. Recipient of a grant from the Singer-Polignac Foundation, he is an uncontested expert in animal sexuality.
Sex constitutes a fundamental mystery in biology, and yet 95% of species think of nothing else...

Between paramecia wedged together in their conjugal reluctance, and lady geckos rejecting all males, animal sexuality does indeed inspire a great deal of investigation: why is it accompanied by such uncertainties, difficulties, or refinements if its ultimate objective is only to efficiently ensure reproduction? And what is the role of pleasure, which assuredly complicates things, in all this?

Following the course of evolution, Thierry Lodé tells about the bliss of the octopus, the ecstasy of the sparrow, and the sensuality of the capuchin monkey. Here, birds lose their penises and gorillas abandon themselves in lesbian embraces. Dolphins, parakeets, and squirrels similarly practice unpredictable masturbation. If the tapir and the duck have the longest organs, the vagina and the clitoris do their best to remain the playing field of lovers. As for kissing, it enables an exchange of saliva, and not only in humans…