French hit back after British attack on G-spot touches nerve
by Lizzy Davies
After scientists in London declared the G-spot may be a myth, gynaecologists gather in Paris to launch counterattack
There are a handful of subjects - among them cricket, the weather and the art of downing pints through a funnel - on which the French deign to allow the English a degree of authority. Sex, however, is not one of them.
Today, just three weeks after scientists at King's College London declared that the elusive G-spot may be a myth, a group of gynaecologists gathered in Paris to launch a counter-attack on what they called a "totalitarian" approach to female sexuality.
Denouncing the study carried out last year by British researchers as fundamentally flawed, the French scientists insisted the fabled erogenous zone did exist in many women – around 60% according to Sylvain Mimoun, the organiser of the conference.
But, they said, it had fallen victim to an Anglo-Saxon tendency to reduce the mysteries of sexuality to absolutes. This attempt to set clear parameters on something variable and ambiguous, they said, was characteristic of British scientific attitudes to sex.
"The King's College study ... shows a lack of respect for what women say," said Pierre Foldès, a leading French surgeon. "The conclusions were completely erroneous because they were based solely on genetic observations and it is clear that in female sexuality there is a variability ... It cannot be reduced to a 'yes' or 'no', or an 'on' or an 'off'."
The British study – the largest ever carried out on the body part that bears the initial of its discoverer, German gynaecologist Ernst Gräfenberg – involved 1,800 female twins being asked whether or not they thought they had a G-spot. Researchers concluded earlier this month that there was no proof to suggest it existed.
Odile Buisson, a gynaecologist, said the study was a demonstration of a cultural difference in attitudes to sex, with Gallic acceptance of ambiguity sitting uneasily beside an Anglo-Saxon need to explain everything. "I don't want to stigmatise at all but I think the Protestant, liberal, Anglo-Saxon character means you are very pragmatic. There has to be a cause for everything, a gene for everything," she said, adding: "I think it's totalitarian."
Foldès, who pioneered a globally renowned technique to restore the clitorises to women who have been circumcised, said the questions in the King's College study started from the false premise that all G-spots are alike. In fact, he says, the highly sensitive area bears little resemblance to the famed magic button guaranteed to generate immediate pleasure.
Moreover, said Mimoun, it will only be felt by a woman who knows it is there and takes steps to cultivate it. "In discovering the sensitive parts of her own body, this sensitive zone [the G-spot] will become more and more functional," he said "But if she has never touched it and no one else has ever touched it ... it won't exist for her as a consequence."
I think Wayne Marshall would have much to say about this outrage: