Aren't Sexual Issues Supposed To Be Sensitive?
This article reflects on the authors' experience thus far in conducting a qualitative study of male extramarital sexual behaviour in Thailand, focusing particularly on the issue of openness in discussing sexual matters. The purpose of this study is to ex plore the influence of wives and close friends on married Thai men's attitudes and behaviour with respect to commercial and non-commercial extramarital sex. The researchers use focus groups to identify prevailing norms, attitudes and general observations regarding this topic, and in-depth interviews to explore personal behavioural patterns and their cognitive justifications. Their study design includes 14 focus groups and approximately 50 in-depth interviews in Bangkok, two provincial towns, and two rur al areas within a 30-mile radius of the towns. Focus groups were held separately for men and women. Both focus groups and in-depth interviews were equally divided by gender. The authors express surprise at the high degree of openness by participants in talking about sexual issues and consider several possible explanations for this openness.
Country of focus: Thailand.