JANET BLOOMFIELD: Is women’s sexuality profoundly narcissistic? That would explain a lot.

The general story we tell ourselves about men and women is that women are naturally cooperative and community oriented and men are naturally competitive and individually oriented, and yet the evidence that Bergner has amassed suggests that exactly the opposite is true: men are more likely to cooperate with one another for the good of the community and women are more likely to compete with one another to achieve personal goals. Recent research into the effect of status on relationships between women seems to bear this out: women are happy to cooperate with other women as long as they perceive their status to be equal. The second a higher status woman enters the scene, it’s a bitchfight! . . .

What does this have to do with female desire?  Well, it’s the beginning of a narcissistic theory of libido: women are driven by deeply felt personal needs rather than broader “catch the best genes that I can for the benefit of my children” motivations.

The actual empirical evidence about women’s sexuality and desire is exactly the opposite of what we are collectively taught. Women don’t choose the best genetic material to have sex with: men do. That’s why men prefer the .7 waist to hip ratio almost universally. It’s a marker of reproductive fitness. Virtually all the physical characteristics men prefer are markers of reproductive fitness. . . . It’s actually women who make their reproductive choices based on insatiable personal desires.