Paul R. Abramson is a professor of psychology at UCLA. He is the author of eleven books, published by Oxford, MIT, W.W. Norton, University of Chicago, and NYU presses. He has also written for the Los Angeles Times, LA Weekly, and the Boston Globe.

Asylum 4 Renegades Press (A4R) is located in Joshua Tree, California. Ancillary divisions, contemplative but not absolute, include Alghero (Sardinia), Berlin, Leiden, Oxford, Paris, Reykjavik, and Salt Spring Island (British Columbia).




Praise for Previous Books by Paul R. Abramson


Abramson, P.R. (2017). Screwing Around With Sex: Essays, Indictments, Anecdotes, and Asides
Joshua Tree, CA: Asylum 4 Renegades Press

Screwing around cover copy

I have, at times, insisted that the lives of sex researchers are pretty boring. Paul Abramson’s collection of analytical essays, Screwing Around With Sex, reveals that this is not always the case. Drawing on personal experiences and preoccupations necessitated by decades of scholarly investigation of sexuality, Abramson highlights the uneasy and sometimes painful interface of sexuality with our current moral landscape. In doing so, he elucidates the contradictions and complexities of contemporary sexuality in ways that frustrate, challenge, and inspire us to question our preconceived notions of what sexuality is – or should be. – Dr. Terri Conley, Professor of Psychology and Women’s Studies, University of Michigan

Rigorous but accessible, this tour of sexuality should be mandatory reading for us all. This work touches on current and important topics like consensual sex and preventing harm, so you cannot ignore it. – Lybi Ma, Deputy Editor, Psychology Today

The mix of effective anecdotes with the process of grappling with moral/scientific issues is very compelling. Chapter 3 (On the Precipice of Porn) reminded me of David Foster Wallace’s book Considering the Lobster and Other Essays, in particular, Wallace’s first chapter on the adult video industry. – Dr. Keith Holyoak, Distinguished Professor of Psychology, UCLA, and Editor of Psychological Review

Professor Abramson has made issues that are difficult, ancient, andcurrent accessible without oversimplifying; urgent policy changestractable; and profound experiences understandable. Over and over as you read, you think- yes, we need to act. – Dr. Gregory A. Miller, Distinguished Professor and Chair, Department of Psychology, UCLA

An idiosyncratic page-turner of a personal and professional journey that brought Paul Abramson to the heart of some of the most interesting issues of sexuality and sexual abuse in the late twentieth century and- through his role as a psychology professor serving as an expert witness- to the backstage of some of the nation’s most important obscenity cases. Enjoyable and illuminating. – Catherine Ross, Professor of Law, George Washington University School of Law



Abramson, P.R. (2010). Sex Appeal: Six Ethical Principles for the 21st Century
New York: Oxford University Press
Sex Appeal

What a great idea…I completely agree with Abramson…I do wish that more literature on the subject resembled [his] book. – The New Yorker

very interesting…so interesting I may have to do multiple posts about it. So interesting that I was pissed when I just spilled coffee on it, because this is one book I plan to keep…[in fact] we could start a sexual revolution right here, through this blog, with help from this book. – Marie Claire

Sex Appeal is the beginning of a conversation that has been a long time coming. How can people make safe, ethical choices about sex without sacrificing the fun of it? How can these choices make our lives, and the world, a better place? Paul Abramson explores these questions and more with six key concepts that will help readers to better understand how to prevent sexual harm while safely enjoying all of the benefits sex has to offer. Sex Appeal is provocative and refreshing in its embrace of a kind of sexual freedom that is at once both joyful and thoughtful. – Dr. Ruth Westheimer (Dr. Ruth)

[Sex Appeal] is really smart, interesting and honest. – Nathan Schiller, Editor, Construction Literary Magazine

While it’s unlikely to happen, [Sex Appeal] should probably be part of the curriculum of every high school sex ed class…to a young person, the insights (or at least the lessons attached to them) could be huge. – Feminist Review

[Dr.] Abramson, an American Professor of Psychology, and one of the most famous scholars of human sexuality, remind us that the body is marching to the rhythm of the brain. – Le Regole Dell’Attrazione Magazine (Italy)



Abramson, P.R. (2007). Romance in the Ivory Tower: The Rights and Liberty of Conscience
Cambridge: MIT Press

Romance in the Ivory Tower Make no mistake – Paul Abramson’s book is a serious and thought-provoking examination of the extent to which institutions should proscribe individual actions. Although I do not endorse all of the conclusions, I strongly recommend this book. – Lord Robert May, Oxford University

Romance in the Ivory Tower presents a compelling argument about the erosion of the rights of privacy and conscience. The debate in this book transcends the issue of personal relationships within academia and engages fundamental questions of liberty and personal choice. – Nadine Strossen, President, American Civil Liberties Union





Abramson, P.R., Pinkerton, S.D. & Huppin, M. (2003). Sexual Rights in America: The Ninth Amendment and the Pursuit of Happiness
New York: NYU Press

Sexual Rights in America: The Ninth Amendment and the Pursuit of Happiness
This frank and lucid book peels the fig leaf off various forms of legal regulation of sexuality, and argues with passion and rich historical detail that individuals should have strong autonomy over their sexual expression as long as their sexual relationships are grounded in consent. The authors’ comprehensive approach makes a considerable contribution to the literature. – Kathleen Sullivan, Dean, Stanford Law School





Abramson, P.R. & Pinkerton, S.D. (2000). A House Divided: Suspicions of Mother-Daughter Incest
New York: W.W. Norton

A House Divided: Suspicions of Mother-Daughter Incest

A riveting true story…meticulous and engaging – Publisher’s Weekly



Abramson, P.R. & Pinkerton, S.D. (1995). With Pleasure: Thoughts on the Nature of Human Sexuality
New York: Oxford University Press

With Pleasure
Stimulating, and informative, and written with ample wit. – Scientific American

A fresh and theoretically enticing approach to the study of human sexuality…Sure to spark intense debate. – Kirkus Reviews

Provocative. – Seattle Times





Abramson, P.R. & Pinkerton, S.D. (1995). (eds.) Sexual Nature/ Sexual Culture
Chicago: University of Chicago Press

Sexual Nature/Sexual Culture
this volume contains much to stimulate, inform, and amuse, in varying proportions. What more can one ask? – Journal of the History of Sexuality

if we ever expect to solve the sexuality based problems that modern societies face, we must encourage investigations of human sexual behavior. Moreover, those investigations should employ a broad range of disciplines – looking at sex from all angles, which is precisely what Sexual Nature / Sexual Culture does. – American Scientist

Highly informative…there is none other quite like it. – Choice

It is useful to find this interesting question scientifically settled once and for all. – Times Literary Supplement

Illuminating. – Gay Times

Intriguing. – Feminist Collections

this book goes a long way towards bridging the gap between nature and nurture. – New Scientist



Abramson, P.R. (1984). Sarah: A Sexual Biography
Albany, N.Y.: State University of New York Press

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How can so much intimate, destructive violence be part of our here and now, almost before our eyes? No novelist would dare, because fiction can neither resolve, nor even make reasonable, this material. – The Los Angeles Times

A fascinating account…A brief but memorable view of emotional survival. – Booklist