Well, well, well, look at how things have finally changed! Looks like Washington University may be warming up to the idea of presenting an honorary degree to Virginia Johnson, who, with Dr. William Masters, conducted much of her landmark sex research at that university.
Arguably, Masters and Johnson's work -- which first documented the basic physiology of human sexuality and then came up with a remarkably successful therapy that toppled Freud and pioneered our current age of the medicalization of sex -- was probably the most well-known research ever conducted at Washington University. Yet for some 40 years -- ever since the conservatives in the medical school found out what Bill and Gini were really up to! -- their name has been essentially taboo at that university. Now several students and faculty members are determined to change that view and are pushing through a petition drive for an honorary degree to be awarded to Virginia. At age 84, Johnson lives in an assisted-living home near the university. Here's the story on the petition drive at Washington and the link to the petition itself.