The Broad Spectrum: Let's all learn a bit more about the clitoris

A couple of pioneering women are demystifying the ladypart.

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There are so many ways that the clitoris is ignored in contrast to the almighty penis or the ever-popular vagina. Even in common vernacular, I bet all of us can think of at least ten nicknames or slang terms right now for cocks and boxes, but how many come to mind for the clit?

Of course, a lack of fun derogatory terms for the clitoris isn’t the worst thing that’s ever happened to it. Female genital mutilation gets that award. Luckily for most of us, ignorance and neglect are the more common insults. 

But never fear, ladies, things are looking up. The world has two new never-been-done-before teaching tools to get us all up to speed on what’s really going on with this delightful organ whose sole purpose is pleasure.

For one, French sociomedical researcher Odile Fillod created the first ever 3-D model of the clitoris to use for teaching school children — because, y’know, France. She told the Guardian she wanted people to learn about the clitoris, and to understand that “the equivalent of a penis in a woman is not a vagina, it’s her clitoris.”

Most of the clitoris is inside our bodies, and it’s actuality similar in length to its male counterpart. In sexy anatomical terms, the clitoris is made up of foreskin, bulbs, legs and a head, and like a penis, it gets engorged with blood and becomes erect during arousal, but, superior to a penis, the clit has about twice the nerve endings. Holla! 

The animated documentary Le Clitoris, by Lori Malépart-Traversy of Montreal, also aims to inform us about the clit’s role in female sexuality. On the film’s website, Malépart-Traversy says she created the film "to demystify female sexuality by discovering the anatomy and functioning of this organ, its history and its “discovery” by male doctors, its role in the female orgasm and its function as a tool of empowerment for women.” 

I suspect she really made the film though, to make sure that dudes know they should be honoring their gal’s clit on the reg. (Like probably with their mouths.) 

Naturally, the blame for our ignorance goes to men, and one man in particular, Sigmund Freud, who in 1905 wrote of two types of orgasms, vaginal and clitoral. He said that the clitoral orgasm was infantile so that when a woman matured her orgasms should come from vaginal penetration, and thus a frustrating belief system was born. 

But now, thanks to a couple of pioneering women who are working to educate people about the mysterious hooded lady, a brighter sexual future may just be in store for the estimated 75 percent of women who only orgasm with clitoral stimulation. 

Cue the “The More You Know” jingle, the shooting star and its rainbow tail:


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