Male sexual arousal across five modes of erotic stimulation

Arch Sex Behav. 1988 Apr;17(2):131-43. doi: 10.1007/BF01542663.


Penile circumference changes and subjective sexual arousal were recorded when erotic material depicting the same sequence of events was experienced in five different modes: film, slides, spoken-text, written-text, and fantasy. Twenty-four men were tested within a repeated-measures design, with the order of presentation of modes counterbalanced across subjects. Sessions were separated by 24 hr or more. The highest levels of physiological and subjective arousal were found for film, while fantasy produced the lowest level of arousal. Slides, spoken-text, and written-text elicited intermediate levels of arousal, and these three conditions were equally potent. Factors relating to mode differences in arousal to erotic stimulation are discussed.

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Arousal / physiology*
  • Audiovisual Aids / methods*
  • Erotica*
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Penile Erection*