2-Volume Set
• Volume 1: Person-Based Approaches
• Volume 2: Contextual Approaches


Sexuality is a fundamental component of human psychological experience, and yet it remains relatively underrepresented in the history of the psychological sciences. The APA Handbook on Sexuality and Psychology marks a turning point in the status of sexuality within the discipline of psychology.

This comprehensive, two-volume handbook provides an overarching review of current empirical research on sexuality and a synthesis of the dominant theoretical perspectives that have guided both research and clinical practice. An organizing current throughout the volume is the integration of individual experience and social/cultural context across every domain of sexuality.

This dual emphasis on person and context is reflected in the structure of the handbook itself.

  • Volume 1 presents foundational information on the history, theoretical and methodological development and current practices in the field, and then moves on to address foundational aspects of sexuality, including desire, orientation, behavior and practices, individual lifespan development, and biological substrates.
  • Volume 2 broadens the analytical frame to emphasize the core contextual factors known to influence the development, expression and interpretation of sexuality and its expression in and through all of the key social institutions of our society, including marginalized populations, education, sexual rights and communities, globalization, religion and the media.

The APA Handbook on Sexuality and Psychology will become a defining resource of this increasingly central topic across the sub-disciplines of psychology.

Table of Contents

Volume 1: Person-Based Approaches

Editorial Board

About the Editors-in-Chief


Series Preface



I. Introduction and Overview

  1. Sexuality Theory: A Review, a Revision and a Recommendation
    Deborah L. Tolman and Lisa M. Diamond
  2. Sexuality and Gender: The Interplay
    Sabra L. Katz-Wise and Janet S. Hyde
  3. Psychology and Sexuality in Historical Time
    Michael Pettit and Peter Hegarty


II. Methodologies of Sexuality Research

  1. Survey Methods in Sexuality Research
    Vanessa Schick, Sarah K. Calabrese, and Debby Herbenick
  2. Experimental, Neuroimaging, and Psychophysiological Methods in Sexuality Research
    Meredith L. Chivers, Kelly D. Suschinsky, Amanda D. Timmers, and Jennifer A. Bossio
  3. Phenomenological Research Methods in the Psychological Study of Sexuality
    David M. Frost, Sara I. McClelland, Jennifer B. Clark, and Elizabeth A. Boylan


III. Dimensions of Sexuality

  1. Biology of the Sexual Response
    James G. Pfaus, Lisa A. Scepkowski, Lesley Marson, and Janniko R. Georgiadis
  2. Sexual Desire and Pleasure
    Lori A. Brotto and Kelly B. Smith
  3. Sexual Diversity
    Peggy J. Kleinplatz and Lisa M. Diamond
  4. Sexuality in the Context of Relationships
    Emily A. Impett, Amy Muise, and Diana Peregine
  5. Sexual Well-Being
    E. Sandra Byers and Uzma S. Rehman
  6. Sexuality and Sexual Violence
    Nicola Gavey and Charlene Y. Senn


IV. Sexuality Development

  1. Life-Span Sexuality Through a Sexual Health Perspective
    Devon J. Hensel and J. Dennis Fortenberry
  2. Sexuality in Childhood
    Sharon Lamb and Aleksandra Plocha
  3. Sexuality in Adolescence
    Lucia F. O'Sullivan and Ashley E. Thompson
  4. Sexuality in Emerging Adulthood
    Carolyn T. Halpern and Christine E. Kaestle
  5. Sexuality in Aging
    Pepper Schwartz, Sarah Diefendorf, and Anne McGlynn-Wright


V. Same-Sex Sexuality

  1. Theories and Etiologies of Sexual Orientation
    Margaret Rosario and Eric W. Schrimshaw
  2. Development of Sexual Orientation and Identity
    Brian Mustanski, Laura Kuper, and George J. Greene
  3. Gender and Same-Sex Sexuality
    Lisa M. Diamond


VI. Sexual Bodies/Embodying Sexuality

  1. Sexuality and Health
    William H. George, Jeanette Norris, Hong V. Nguyen, N. Tatiana Masters, and Kelly Cue Davis
  2. Sexuality and HIV/AIDS Prevention
    José A. Bauermeister, Katherine S. Elkington, and David Huebner
  3. Sexuality and Reproductive Health
    Ronna Popkin and John Santelli
  4. Transgender Identity Development
    Walter O. Bockting
  5. Sexuality and Embodiment
    Deborah L. Tolman, Christin P. Bowman, and Breanne Fahs


Volume 2: Contextual Approaches

Editorial Board

I. Commodification of Sex

  1. Sexuality and Pornography
    Gert Martin Hald, Christopher Seaman, and Daniel Linz
  2. Sexuality and Sex Work
    Lianne A. Urada, Shira M. Goldenberg, Kate Shannon, and Steffanie A. Strathdee
  3. Sexuality and New Technologies
    Eric R. Buhi, Heather Blunt, Christopher Wheldon, and Sheana S. Bull


II. Treating Sexuality

  1. Sexuality and Psychotherapy
    Donald S. Strassberg and Julia E. Mackaronis
  2. The History of Sexual Medicine
    Michael A. Perelman


III. Sexuality, Rights, and Social Change

  1. Sexuality and Culture
    V. Bede Agocha, Marysol Asencio, and Carlos Ulises Decena
  2. Sexual Social Movements and Communities
    Richard Parker, Jonathan Garcia, and Miguel Muñoz-Laboy
  3. Sexual Rights for Marginalized Populations
    Louis F. Graham and Mark Padilla
  4. Sexuality and Globalities
    Sonia Corrêa, Brian R. Davis, and Richard Parker


IV. Sexuality and Public Institutions

  1. Sexuality and Social Policy
    Sara I. McClelland and David M. Frost
  2. Sexuality Education
    Nancy Kendall
  3. Sexuality and Entertainment Media
    L. Monique Ward, Lauren Reed, Sarah L. Trinh, and Monica Foust
  4. Sexuality and Religion
    Krystal M. Hernandez, Annette Mahoney, and Kenneth I. Pargament


Editor Bios

Deborah L. Tolman is professor of social welfare and psychology at The Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College and The Graduate Center of The City University of New York, where she trains doctoral students studying women's lives and sexuality-related topics.

Dr. Tolman is an applied developmental psychologist whose research has focused on adolescent sexuality, gender development, gender equity, and research methods. Her groundbreaking book on adolescent girls' sexuality, Dilemmas of Desire: Teenage Girls Talk About Sexuality, published in 2002, was awarded the 2003 Distinguished Book Award from the Association for Women in Psychology.

Her research has covered the impact of television on adolescent sexuality, the roles of beliefs about masculinity and femininity in adolescent girls' and boys' experiences of sexual and romantic relationships and mental health, and adolescent girls' experiences with fellatio. She is currently revisiting how adolescent girls are negotiating their own sexuality in the current complex social landscape of sexualization and choice and other contradictory messages about female and adolescent sexuality.

Her work has been supported by the National Institute of Child Health and Development, the Spencer Foundation, the Ford Foundation, the Atlantic Philanthropies and the NoVo Foundation. She has published more than 75 peer-reviewed articles and book chapters and several books on adolescent sexuality, research methods, and feminist theory.

Dr. Tolman is a Fellow of APA, Division 35 (Society for the Psychology of Women) and Division 9 (Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues [SPSSI]) and has received wide recognition for her contributions to female adolescent development. She was a member of APA's Task Force on the Sexualization of Girls and an author of its report, the most frequently downloaded document on APA's website, which was the impetus for her cofounding SPARK, an intergenerational girl-fueled social movement to challenge the sexualization of girls. Through this work, she is building a bridge between academia and activism to create enabling conditions in which girls can develop healthy sexuality and well-being.

Among awards she has received are APA's Committee on Women's Leadership Award and SPSSI's Louise Kidder Early Career Award. She earned her doctorate in human development and psychology at the Harvard Graduate School of Education in 1992. She was senior research scientist and associate director at the Center for Research on Women at Wellesley College, and professor of sexuality studies and founding director of the Center for Research on Gender and Sexuality at San Francisco State University.

Lisa M. Diamond is professor of psychology and gender studies at the University of Utah. Her research focuses on close relationships and sexuality over the life span, with a particular emphasis on their biobehavioral underpinnings and health implications. The three primary areas of her research are the development of sexual desire, identity, and orientation over the life span; influences of close relationships on mental and physical health; and the role of biologically based capacities for emotion regulation in shaping the development and experience of intimate relationships.

Dr. Diamond is best known for her unprecedented longitudinal study of 100 lesbian, bisexual, heterosexual, and "unlabeled" women, whom she has been interviewing approximately every two years since 1995, tracking changes in their sexual identities, attractions, and behaviors over time.

Her 2008 book, Sexual Fluidity, describes the changes and transformations that her respondents underwent from late adolescence to adulthood, and profiles some of the most intriguing women in detail. Sexual Fluidity has been awarded the Distinguished Book Award from APA's Division 44 (Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Issues).

Dr. Diamond has received numerous awards for her work from APA's Committee on Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Concerns, the American Association of University Women, the Society for the Scientific Study of Sexuality, and APA Division 9 (Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues). In 2011 she was granted Fellow status in APA Division 44 (Society for the Psychological Study of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Issues).

Dr. Diamond has been awarded grants in support of her research from the National Institute for Mental Health, the W. T. Grant Foundation, the American Psychological Foundation, the American Institute for Bisexuality, and the Templeton Foundation. Her current work focuses on understanding associations between day-to-day changes in gonadal hormone levels and day-to-day changes in same-sex and other-sex desires, investigating the psychological and biological mechanisms through which sexual activity relates to mental and physical health, and understanding the origins of individual differences in sexual fluidity.

Reviews & Awards
  • 2014 Choice Outstanding Academic Title

An exceptional collection of scholarly work that uses a psychological perspective to examine the multifaceted nature of human sexuality.
Psychology of Women Quarterly

Refreshing in its departure from the current heteronormative, gender-binary view of sexuality and challenging in its feminist reframing of sexuality.

Although primarily a reference tool, this resource will inspire even researchers and practitioners in the field to reconsider some of their beliefs and attitudes toward sexuality. Essential.

With contemporary sexuality themes (e.g., the Internet, technology) peppered throughout, the information will prove handy to those working in any clinical setting and with any patient population…the APA Handbook of Sexuality and Psychology is deserving of a place on any psychologist's bookshelf.
New Jersey Psychologist