A new book of dicks, human and otherwise

"Nothing gets clicks like a story about dicks," writes biologist Emily Willingham. "Even if it's about a penis that's 1.5 millimeters long and millions of years old." The quote is from Willingham's new book Phallacy: Life Lessons from the Animal Penis. From a Science News review:

[…] The human penis is distinctly lackluster. It isn't covered in spines and has no penis bone, or baculum. It's not excessively large for the human body size. But that mediocrity reveals something crucial about ourselves. The human penis's lack of weaponry and its fleshy texture show that humans don't engage in large amounts of mating competition, with a male using his penis as a fencing foil or to scoop out a rival's semen. Instead, Willingham notes, it points to our tendency toward prolonged mating bonds within a social network.

What might surprise some readers is how much of the book is devoted, not to intromitta, but to the things they intromit into, and how very little we know about them. "When scientists do look into a vagina," Willingham writes, "it's usually to see if a penis will fit into it and how and nothing more." In highlighting our culture's overemphasis on the penis and the relative dismissal of the vagina, Willingham shows how the male domination of science has produced research that has focused on, well, the male parts, and how that leaves out fully half of the story of reproduction.

Phallacy: Life Lessons from the Animal Penis (Amazon)