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Alfred Kinsey

Alfred Kinsey

Alfred Charles Kinsey was a person of multiple talents and interests, he was a biologist, entymology and zoology professor and a sexologist. He founded The Kinsey Institute for Research in Sex, Gender, and Reproduction at Indiana University. His works on human sexuality has greatly influenced the American culture, norms and thinking.

Born on June 23rd,1894 in New Jersey, Kinsey was the eldest of the three children. He faced a distressed and troublesome childhood mainly because his parents had troubles making both ends meet and he faced severe health problems but did not have medical facilities because of  poverty. As a young child he was inclined towards nature and camping. His interest in psychology was revealed when he prepared his undergraduate thesis on psychology with title of Group Dynamics in Young Boys. This thesis spoke volumes about his aptitude in psychology. He received his early education from Columbia school where he showed that he was a diligent and hard-working student. He was keen and interested in studying biology and for fulfilling this purpose he joined Bowdoin college, Maine against his father’s wish who wanted him to study engineering. He obtained his bachelor of science degrees in biology and psychology from the college in 1916. After that, he went to Harvard University to study for PhD in biology and successfully obtained the degree. He taught as zoology at Indiana University at Bloomfield.

His renowned acclamation includes being the first psychologist to have developed a large scale inquiry systems for assisting him in conducting researches on human sexuality. Though his researches provoked controversies and raised question about american morals and culture but his works, researches and books acquired international fame and repute, eventually. Pioneer of American sexology, he studied and proposed different theories and practices concerning this subject. He, also designed and developed a scale which measured sexual orientation , widely known as Kinsey Scale, ranged from zero to six where zero is completely heterosexual and 6 is completely homosexual. His first lecture concerning sexual structure and the physiological make-up was his first public discussion conducted at Indiana University which presented the idea that late marriages are essentially counter-productive to health. He got scholarship from Rockefeller Foundation to gain more knowledge and conduct more studies on the subject of human sexology.

He got fame as celebrity when his two books on sexual behavior in human species got published 1948. These publications got world-wide recognition as Kinsey’s Reports. His works earned him such fame and popularity that reputable magazines like Times, Life, Look carried out articles on him. He attained media recognition by these publications. His very first television program with Jack Benny as the host was much like a hidden humour program.  Although his theories on this subject raised controversies but it gave way to American revolution in 1960’s. He is regarded as a significant yet controversial personality in the American history. He died of pneumonia and heart attack on 25th August 1956.

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