Introduction

Clip from the Oprah Winfrey Show, broadcast May 8, 2000. The topic concerns "wives who don't want sex... and husbands about to give up." Guests include Dr. Elena Kamel and Dr. Gina Ogden. Ogden discusses her research.

Dr. Gina Ogden (1935-2018) donated her archives to the Kinsey Library and Special Collections in June 2018. Dr. Ogden developed an approach to sex therapy called the Four-Dimensional Wheel (4-D), in which the emotional, mental, and spiritual aspects of sex are integrated with the physical. This model treats networks of issues as unique to the individual instead of relying on a medical, diagnostic approach.

In the first chapter of The Return of Desire (2008), Ogden describes the sexual response model developed by William Masters and Virginia Johnson in the mid-1960s, and later expanded by Helen Singer Kaplan in the late 70s. Ogden describes their sexual response cycle as a "performance model-- goal-oriented and focused on getting from desires to orgasm with no room for staying on track" (5). Ogden's 4-D Wheel model treats sexual response as a cyclical journey rather than a linear performance.

Ogden developed the Wheel from the results of a nation-wide survey of sexual experience in the late 90s called "Integrating Sex and Spirituality." In The Heart and Soul of Sex (2006), Ogden provides a report of the survey responses. Of the responses, she writes, "They delve into the mysteries of sexual connection-- how to open up our heart and souls, how to let our partners know what we most deeply want, how to keep from being overwhelmed by so much feeling, so much trust, so much light" (The Heart and Soul of Sex, page 3). In addition to the over 3,000 survey responses, respondents wrote nearly 1,500 letters describing their experiences. Both the survey responses and letters are included in the collection.

The Gina Ogden collection consists of:

  • Presentation records (1974-2017), including instructional notes, lecture transcriptions, ephemera, promotional materials, and correspondence
  • Research files, including over 3,000 "Integrating Sex and Spirituality" surveys and accompanying statistical analyses
  • Writing drafts and notes for dissertation and major publications
  • Journal and article reprints
  • Audio-visual material of selected profesional engagements on VHS, U-matic, Betacam, and audiocassette formats

Extent: 15 cubic feet (boxes)

Shortly after donation, The Kinsey Library and Special Collections and announced the Gina Ogden Curatorial Scholarship for Integrative Approaches to Sex Research and Therapy.  The intent of this project is to engage scholars in Ogden’s 4-D Wheel model and create a tangible product from her archives. 

4-D Wheel of Sexual Experience

Ogden's 4-D Wheel of Sexual Experience model. The wheel encourages sex therapists and clients of sex therapy to "consider the whole picture, not just a piece of it... That piece is most often defined by pathology... [and] frozen in time. The Wheel can help client explore places where their stories are stuck." Image and quote excerpted from Expanding the Practice of Sex Therapy (2013, page 18).

This digital exhibition provides an introductory resource for scholars and other parties interested in the work of Dr. Ogden and the contents of her collection. The "Safe Encounters" series of items compiles materials from Ogden's presentation files created around the publication of her book of the same title. The "Conclusion" page provides a bibliography of books and a list of related Kinsey collections and materials. Click the thumbnail of each image to be taken to a readable, full-size copy with accompanying metadata.

Access restrictions may apply. Contact The Kinsey Institute Libray and Special Collections, libknsy@indiana.edu, for further information.

This digital exhibition designed, curated, and written by Jack Kovaleski (2019).

Introduction