Community Reviews. Showing Rating details. Sort order. May 08, Ill D added it Recommends it for: Intactivists. Shelves: comic-reviews , reviewed , comics. Fool me twice, shame on me. A mixed torrent of writhing shame and oppression is clearly the result, and both latched upon me after reading the third offering in the ForeSkin man series. Finally, after two goddamn issues, our inactivist protagonist finally reveals a brutal externality of such an otherwise unthinkingly accepted operation: death.
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Sure, while grantedly rare — does actually happen. However, one nugget of unpleasant truth, no matter how stunning nor distressing is no umbrage for yet another weak offering in this series. Foreskin Man teams up with his ostensibly misnomered?
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Trading the urban for the tribal, this inactivist duo fights genital mutilation upon the Savannah of Africa. Without a moment to spare, glints and glimmers of supra-normal powers grind a highly minimalist story to its inevitable conclusion once again. With typical bad-guy intentions only subterfuged with yet another paper-thin chain of unimaginatively implemented reduplicative effects, ForeSkin Man is sometimes his worst enemy — almost presenting a real world issue as a farce in of itself.
Where are we left dear readers? Sadly, a serious issue of human rights and abuse is woefully under-applied and weakly thought out. No sources are presented within.
Nor are exhibitions of the awful results of such malfeances exposited. Shame on Hess for forging such a disappointingly under-researched and emotionally uninviting yarn once again. No thumbs. Do your own research.
Swaziland: Women love male circumcision
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. About Matthew Hess. Matthew Hess. Anti-circumcision activist and graphic novelist. Hess is the president of MGMbillorg which strives to protect children from forced circumcision. Other books in the series. Foreskin Man 7 books. Before we get into the details of the science, and looking just at this claim from the "headline" conclusion, it might be helpful to review some basic anatomy.
Circumcision usually a beneficial step for newborn boys | Georgia Health News
Lesson 1. The foreskin is part of the penis. It is made up of sensitive tissue more on this below ; so if you remove it, the penis loses sensitivity by definition. Specifically, it loses all of the sensitivity experienced in the foreskin itself , along with all subjective sensations that are unique to having a foreskin. Chief among these sensations is the feeling of rolling the foreskin back and forth over the head of the penis--the "glans"--during sex, foreplay, or masturbation see this NSFW video to get the idea : that specific feeling does not exist without a foreskin.
Lesson 2. Imagine a study that claimed to show that removing a girl's labia minora --her vaginal "lips"--did not reduce the sensitivity of the vulva. And just like the foreskin , they are richly supplied with nerve endings, blood vessels, and sebaceous glands that provide natural lubrication during sexual activity. Depending on one's sexual preferences, the labia can be tugged, stretched, sucked on, and otherwise "played with" as a part of one's sexual experience; the same thing is true of the foreskin.
So if a girl has her labia removed which is a federal crime in most Western countries , 3 or if a boy has his foreskin removed, neither one will be able to experience any of the subjective sensations that go along with those specific activities when they grow up and become sexually active. They also won't be able to "compare" their sexual experiences with a version of themselves from an alternate universe in which their genitals had been left intact when they were children: this point will become important later on.
Lesson 3. The United States is the only developed country that practices routine circumcision on a majority of newborn boys for non-religious reasons. Circumcision in this context is often described as "just a little snip," and the foreskin as "a tiny flap of skin. As for the foreskin itself, it is not a "flap of skin," but rather a double-layered, retractable, invertible sheath of tissue that functions seamlessly with the rest of the penis here's another video ; and it's only "tiny" when it's connected to a baby.
The adult foreskin has on average 30 to 50 square centimeters of tissue surface area roughly the size of a credit card , with numerous specialized nerve endings that respond to tactile stimulation. So let me try another analogy. Saying that removing the foreskin "doesn't reduce penis sensitivity" is a bit like saying that removing the pinky finger doesn't reduce hand sensitivity.
What you really mean is that removing the pinky finger which is part of the hand doesn't reduce sensitivity in the remaining fingers --although, as we'll see, it's not even clear that this part of the analogy holds up in the actual study. In other words, it's an odd way to frame the hypothesis. To continue the analogy, my guess is that most people--if faced with the claim that removing the pinky finger doesn't reduce sensitivity of the hand--would say, "But what about the pinky finger itself?!
And they would be right to say it. But that is not how the foreskin is treated in most developed countries, and that's not how it seems to most men who possess one. Now that we have some idea of what we are talking about, let's take a look at the actual study. The researchers recruited 62 men, of whom 30 were circumcised and 32 were intact.
The age range of participants was 18 to 37 years, which means that older men--including those ages 40 and up--were excluded. This is a little bit strange from a sampling perspective, since problems with penile sensitivity and general function start to pick up around that age : if you're trying to detect a difference due to circumcision, it is likelier to be more pronounced in older, rather than younger, men. Participants were also pre-selected to be free of sexual dysfunction.
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So if foreskin removal causes sexual dysfunction on a statistical basis then this study cannot find it, by design. Right out of the gate, then, we have a couple of limitations: 1 we don't know if the results of the study--whatever they turn out to be--apply beyond the age of 37, and 2 we don't know if they generalize beyond men without any sexual problems which is the very group of men you would think we'd be interested in, given the hypothesis.
Another limitation is the size of the sample: it's small. Too small. As a statistician would say, it's "underpowered. What that means is that the absence of a measurable effect for sensitivity doesn't tell us very much. It would be like attempting to tell the difference between two photographs printed at a horrible resolution say, 10 pixels , when the differences--if they existed--would be completely obvious at a higher resolution say, pixels. You don't run a "10 pixel" study and conclude "the photographs are identical. As it happens, the researchers actually used a computer program to calculate exactly how many participants they would need to detect an effect of circumcision status on penile sensitivity: for their "pain threshold" test I'll say more about this later , they found that they would need participants to detect an effect; and for their "warmth detection threshold" test, they found that they would need participants to detect an effect.
So they had about half as many participants as they needed for the first test, and about a quarter as many participants as they needed for the second test. Here's the bottom line. If you don't recruit enough participants to detect the effect you're looking for in this case, a difference between circumcised men and intact men in terms of their penile sensitivity , it is misleading to say "there isn't an effect. But actually, there's more to the story. To understand the meaning of this "effect" I'll say what it was in just a moment , you have to remember that there are two different comparisons the researchers were interested in.
The first comparison is between circumcised and intact men--in terms of their respective sensitivity--at each location on the penis being tested. For this comparison, you needed participants. The second comparison is between different locations on the penis itself --in terms of their respective sensitivity--collapsing across the circumcision status of the men. For this comparison, you can get away with fewer participants. Now, there were four different locations on the penis that the researchers tested: two on the shaft same location for both circumcised and intact men , one on the head of the penis same location for both circumcised and intact men, but with the foreskin rolled back in the intact group , and one on the foreskin intact men only.
Just to clarify: the researchers tested one spot on the outside of the foreskin, versus three spots on the rest of the penis.
Previous research suggests , however, that different parts of the foreskin have different distributions of nerve endings, and that it is the inside of the foreskin the part that becomes exposed when the foreskin is rolled back, like it does during sex that is especially sensitive. The researchers didn't test this part, which means that their study design was stacked against the sensitivity of foreskin from the get-go. So what did the researchers find? Given what I've just said, and given the way this study has been written up in the media so far, you will be surprised to learn that the "statistically significant finding"--comparing all of the penile locations just mentioned--was actually still in favor of the foreskin: the part of the penis removed by circumcision.
Specifically, the foreskin was found to be significantly more sensitive to warmth than the head of the penis, regardless of circumcision status, and numerically more sensitive than all other testing sites including the forearm, which was used as a "control. What do you notice? A similar result was found on a "tactile threshold" test. For this test, the researchers applied a series of thin filaments to different parts of the penis the same four locations described above , and wrote down how much pressure was needed before the participants could actually feel the stimulus see here for a video demonstration.
Again, you will be surprised to learn--I am quoting directly from the paper now--that "Tactile thresholds at the foreskin intact men were significantly lower more sensitive than all [other] genital testing sites" including the sites in circumcised men emphasis added. Let me just repeat this: for the one test the researchers used that measured actual tactile sensitivity which is what most people think of when they hear the word "sensitive" in this context , they found that the foreskin was more sensitive than any other part of the penis, including all parts of the penis that remain in circumcised men.
This is consistent with a previous finding by other researchers from , who concluded that "Circumcision ablates [removes] the most sensitive parts of the penis.
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