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Yes, men fake it too! Men, masculinity and ‘faking’ orgasm

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Yes, men fake it too! Men, masculinity and ‘faking’ orgasm

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Dr Hannah Frith, Principal Lecturer at University of Brighton

Location: N44, St Mary's University

Faking orgasm is popularly represented as a quintessentially female, if a little out-dated, practice in heterosexual relationships. Scholarly research has explored the ways in which this practice intersects withgendered sexual scripts which position faking as a manifestation of patriarchal sexual scripts which prioritise male pleasure, and position women as having a ‘duty of care’ to protect male partners and shore up their sexual subjectivities. More recently, female faking has been conceptualised as a performance pressure evoked by the post-feminist sexual subject and a growing orgasmic imperative. By contrast, news that ‘Men fake it too!’ (Daily Mail, 19th June 2013) is often treated with astonishment or disbelief in the popular media.

Men faking orgasm is rarely given much serious scholarly attention beyond the reporting of quantitative data that indicates that a substantial number of men fake. In this paper, I explore the ways in which men faking orgasm is represented in popular media, and how this intersects with constructions of masculinity and sexuality. Using the more extensive research and theorising of female orgasm as a springboard, I consider some of the questions we could be asking about men’s practice of pretending to orgasm.


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