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In biology, the term Coolidge effect describes the re-arousal of a male animal by the introduction of a new female. The sex difference that the effect refers to is explained by Bateman's principle.

The term comes from an old joke according to which President Calvin Coolidge and his wife visited a government farm one day and were taken around on separate tours. Mrs. Coolidge, passing the chicken pens, inquired of a supervisor whether the lone rooster was sufficient, given the many hens in the chicken flock.

"Yes", the man said, "the rooster works very hard."

Mrs. Coolidge then asked, "Really? The rooster works very hard? Every day?"

"Oh, yes," the man said. "Dozens of times a day."

"Interesting!" Mrs. Coolidge replied, "Be sure to tell that to the President!"

Some time later the President, passing the same pens, was told about the roosters - and about his wife's remark. "Same hen every time?", he asked.

"Oh, no, a different one each time," the supervisor replied.

"Tell that," Coolidge said with a sly nod, "to Mrs. Coolidge."

The Coolidge effect has sometimes been mentioned as an explanation of why pornographic images (of the female) are exciting to the male when first purchased, but after repeated viewing can "lose its effect." The phenomenon may also explain why male pornographic actors may use the services of a fluffer.

Human males experience a post-ejactulary refractory period after sex. They are incapable of engaging in sex with the same female after ejaculation and require time to recover full sexual function. In popular reference, the Coolidge effect is the well-documented phenomenon that the post ejaculatory refractory period is reduced or eliminated if a separate female becomes available. (see B R Hergenhahn and Matthew Olson, Introduction to Theroies of Personality , Sixth Edition, pp396-397,Prentice Hall, ISBN 0--13-099226-7.)  This effect is cited by evolutionary biologists as a reason why males are more likely to desire sex with a greater number and variety of partners than females.Id. 

Some researchers think that exposure to the pheromones of a different female is a significant factor in this phenomenon.

See also

de:Coolidge-Effekt he:אפקט קולידג'

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