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Robbie Wagoner

Mrs. Thomas
UWRT 1103-048
24 March 2016
Annotated Bibliography 2
Horstman, Judith. The Scientific American Book of Love, Sex, and the Brain: The Neuroscience
of How, When, Why, and Who We Love. San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 2012. Print.

This text was written by award-winning journalist Judith Hortsman. Hortsman focuses a
majority of her works on health and medicine. While she has been conducting journalism for
magazines such as Time for forty years, Hortsman has been practicing the art of meditation and
yoga for the past three and a half decades. Hortsman is well known for her work in regards to the
health field and has been the honored receiver of several awards due to her books. The
information presented in her book titled The Scientific American Book of Love, Sex, and the
Brain: The Neuroscience of How, When, Why, and Who We Love., can be considered highly
reliable and trusted among those who have read it. This text, and the words within it, are a

perfect example of what information I will need to further my current research topic of love and
its effect on the brain.
This text was very interesting, and although I was unable to read it in its entirety, it was
clear to see what messages Judith Hortsman was trying to announce. The text portrayed an
amazing outlook on how the brain controls our relationships and romance itself. It is now
commonly known that most men and women understand that the brain is the main focus for our
individual associations with erotica. Current research proves that both sexual orientation and
sexual identity are hard-wired into one's brain and has little to do with socialization. Research
also shows that we, as human beings, feel the overwhelming need to crave connection and
relationship. This accounts as a vital part of our self-esteem, pleasure, and well-being in general.
Judith Hortsman goes on to talk about sexual desire and how it can be activated through any of
the five senses that all humans obtain. She states: These sensorium are located at different parts
of the brain, and can be activated indefinitely into our senior years. To conclude her text,
Hortsman speaks about how there is more and more information becoming known about the
brain and its full effect on love, however, there are still many questions that have yet to be

Who do we love? Who loves us? And why? Why does some love die while other
love lasts? Is it really a mystery, or can science (specifically neuroscience) shed some
light on how, why, and who our brains love? Probably it can. (Page xii)
Much is written of the mysteries of love, but there is no mystery about our need
for it. We crave the comfort of others, especially those who have become special to us.
(Page 1)

Love is not love which alters when it alteration finds, or bends with the remover
to remove. O, no! It is an ever-fixed mark, that looks on tempests and is never shaken.
(Page 2) (Quoted from William Shakespeare)

While many would make the assumption that a book written about love and sex would
only speak of explicit material that would make even the most mature reader cringe, this book
was far from that. It was excellent in that it throughly explained why humans feel the want and
desire for love and sexual contact. It spoke about how the brain can be examined to understand
exactly which parts of the organ light up when sexual contact is given to those being
researched. Judith Hortsman constantly spoke about her experiences with meditation and yoga
and how it allows one to fully understand their brain and understand what makes their brain feel
good, which is more often than not, sex. While my final assignment will not speak entirely of
sex, such as this book has done, I do feel the need to include the act of sexual conduct into my
findings because it does play a large role in the brain's reaction to love. This book truly allowed
me to understand why the human brain can act so differently when introduced to sexual conduct
and thoughts, an understanding that is essential to the creation of a proper research assignment.