Clitoris Design

Clitoris Design by Christina Goestl, 1998


The clitoris extends far deeper into the female body, and you might have known only half of the facts. What we used to call clitoris is merely the visible tip of a vast and complicated internal system of highly responsive sexual tissue.

"The 'body' of the clitoris, which connects to the glans, is about as big as the first joint of your thumb. It has two arms up to 9 centimeter long that flare backwards into the body, lying just a few millimeter from the ends of the muscles that run up the inside of the thigh. Also extending from the body of the clitoris, and filling the space between its arms, are two bulbs, one on each side of the vaginal cavity."
Susan Williamson, Rachel Nowak in New Scientist

The body of the clitoris is hidden by fat and bone, it's situated right behind the pubic bone. It is very close to the urethra, surrounding it on three sides, while the fourth is embedded in the front wall of the vagina. The Bulbs have been known in anatomic textbooks, but not their connection with the clitoris. Consisting of erectile tissue, they lie behind the labia and encompass a large area of the anterior vaginal wall, extending the clitoris deep into the body.The cavernosal nerves travel alongside the walls of the uterus, vagina, bladder and urethra. Research on the nerve pathways is continuing, we are waiting for further information to come . . . and the impact this knowledge might have on women health care issues, female genital mutilation etc.

Unbelievable but true -- the full complexity of the clitoris disappeared from the anatomy books after 1948, and only feminists efforts made some attempts to prevent the knowledge to disappear completely (e.g. A New View of a Woman's Body by The Federation of Feminist Women's Health Centers, 1981).

As Miriam English points out in her article for Lesbiana Magazine, the clitoris has been labelled again since 1981 but only minimally. How could this happen? A lot of assumptions are made, but whatever is assumed about this mutilated presentation of the most astonishing part of the female body -- these are royally disappointing facts !

In 1998 Australian urology surgeon Dr Helen O'Connell brought the topic back to a wider attention. It emerged in the news, thanks to Miriam English, Susann Williamson, Glennda Chui and other reporters, and spread all over the internet. A tiny note in DIVA, London's Lesbian lifestyle mag, draw my attention to these gorgeous news. I was and still am totally intrigued.

I say: Spread the word!

Go tell your friends, mothers, daughters, gynaecologists! Be careful if you need medical help. Insist in getting clear information before anything is done in that area. It might take ages till the news hit the textbooks, the task is just the same as usual: if we fail to inform each other no one ever will. And for sure we don't appreciate coming generations of women who are being taught everything about tiny bones and single rips but are left entirely in the dark when it comes to our pleasure spots.

Brought to you by Corps Diplomatiqué du Clitoridienne 1998

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