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Promiscuities : the secret struggle for womanhood / Naomi Wolf.

By: Wolf, Naomi.
Material type: TextTextPublisher: New York : Random House, ©1997Edition: 1st ed.Description: xxx, 286 pages ; 25 cm.Content type: text Media type: unmediated Carrier type: volumeISBN: 067941603X; 9780679416036.Subject(s): Teenage girls -- Sexual behavior -- United States | Women -- Sexual behavior -- United States | United States -- Social conditions -- 1960-1980Additional physical formats: Online version:: Promiscuities.DDC classification: 306.7/0835/2 Online resources: Sample text | Contributor biographical information | Publisher description
Contents:
Introduction: First Person Sexual -- 1. The Time and the Place: 1968-1971 -- 2. The Facts of Life -- 3. Activity into Passivity: Blanking Out -- 4. Free Flight to House Arrest: Slowing Down -- 5. Nakedness: Pride and Shame -- 6. Girlfriends -- 7. Sluts -- 8. First Base: Hierarchy -- 9. Second Base: Love and Control -- 10. Crash Course: Their Bodies -- 11. Third Base: Identity -- 12. Fourth Base: How to Make a Woman -- 13. Skipped Homework: Our Bodies -- 14. More Skipped Homework: Our Pleasure -- 15. Babies -- 16. Cheap or Precious? -- 17. Adults -- 18. A Virus -- 19. An Hypocrisy -- 20. The Technically White Dress -- 21. The Time and the Place: 1996.
Summary: Promiscuities follows a group of adolescent girls as they gradually become aware of themselves as sexual beings and discover what our culture tells them being female means. Drawing on her own experiences as well those of her contemporaries, Naomi Wolf reveals the secrets of our coming of age: the sexual games, forbidden crushes, losses of virginity, and rites of initiation. She also uncompromisingly examines the darker territories of abortion, the influences of the sex industry, and sexual violence that underlie contemporary girl's struggle for womanhood. By bringing into light our relationship to the "shadow slut" that conditions our sexual development, Promiscuities explores how the sexual experiences of the adolescent years determine women's sense of their own value as adults, and envisions how we could better guide girls through the "normatively shocking" landscape they now inhabit.Summary: Finally, Wolf looks at the popular culture of the recent past, as well as at the history and mythology of female desire, to show how our "liberated" culture still fears and distorts female passion. Bold and candid, funny and revelatory, Wolf's stories illustrate the fear and excitement, the fantasies and sometimes crippling realities, that make up a young contemporary woman's journey of erotic and emotional discovery.
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Item type Current location Call number Status Date due Barcode
Book University of Texas At Tyler
Stacks - 3rd Floor
HQ27.5 .W65 1997 (Browse shelf) Available 0000002059996

Includes bibliographical references (pages 263-271) and index.

Introduction: First Person Sexual -- 1. The Time and the Place: 1968-1971 -- 2. The Facts of Life -- 3. Activity into Passivity: Blanking Out -- 4. Free Flight to House Arrest: Slowing Down -- 5. Nakedness: Pride and Shame -- 6. Girlfriends -- 7. Sluts -- 8. First Base: Hierarchy -- 9. Second Base: Love and Control -- 10. Crash Course: Their Bodies -- 11. Third Base: Identity -- 12. Fourth Base: How to Make a Woman -- 13. Skipped Homework: Our Bodies -- 14. More Skipped Homework: Our Pleasure -- 15. Babies -- 16. Cheap or Precious? -- 17. Adults -- 18. A Virus -- 19. An Hypocrisy -- 20. The Technically White Dress -- 21. The Time and the Place: 1996.

Promiscuities follows a group of adolescent girls as they gradually become aware of themselves as sexual beings and discover what our culture tells them being female means. Drawing on her own experiences as well those of her contemporaries, Naomi Wolf reveals the secrets of our coming of age: the sexual games, forbidden crushes, losses of virginity, and rites of initiation. She also uncompromisingly examines the darker territories of abortion, the influences of the sex industry, and sexual violence that underlie contemporary girl's struggle for womanhood. By bringing into light our relationship to the "shadow slut" that conditions our sexual development, Promiscuities explores how the sexual experiences of the adolescent years determine women's sense of their own value as adults, and envisions how we could better guide girls through the "normatively shocking" landscape they now inhabit.

Finally, Wolf looks at the popular culture of the recent past, as well as at the history and mythology of female desire, to show how our "liberated" culture still fears and distorts female passion. Bold and candid, funny and revelatory, Wolf's stories illustrate the fear and excitement, the fantasies and sometimes crippling realities, that make up a young contemporary woman's journey of erotic and emotional discovery.

Reviews provided by Syndetics

Library Journal Review

Wolf has written passionately about the effects of popular culture on female self-image in numerous articles and books (The Beauty Myth, LJ 4/1/91). Her newest work centers on the way American culture of the late Sixties and Seventies created a generation of females torn between the need to express their sensuality and the desire to meet society's behavioral expectations. To illustrate her position, Wolf relies almost exclusively on the coming-of-age experiences of herself, her friends, and acquaintances in her hometown, San Francisco. Overgeneralization abounds as she attempts to apply the microcosmic events of this mostly white, middle-class, liberal milieu to a whole generation. A new stereotype is presented in which all girls wanted to be Barbie and all teenagers viewed loss of virginity as the key to attaining "womanhood." There is a desperate defensiveness in the tone of this book, which, in spite of references to other sociological and anthropological studies, diminishes the force of Wolf's argument. Fans of the author as well as expected talk-show appearances will nevertheless generate demand for this work. Libraries should purchase accordingly. [Previewed in Prepub Alert, LJ 2/1/97.]‘Rose M. Cichy, Osterhout Free Lib., Wilkes-Barre, Pa. (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

CHOICE Review

Wolf, author of the well-received The Beauty Myth (CH, Jan'92), offers an incisive feminist critique of contemporary scripts of female sexuality. Drawing on her own experiences and those of her friends who grew up in San Francisco after the pill and before AIDs, all of whom are now in their early 30s, she follows the typical sexual development of this group of young girls as they become women. From playing with Barbie dolls to choosing a wedding dress, Wolf offers moving personal vignettes and enlightened, critical commentary. Although she places some blame for the troubled nature of her generation's struggle for womanhood on the abdication of responsibility by the parental generation of the '60s and '70s, the primary culprit she identifies is society and the oppressive climate and contradictions it presents to young girls. Wolf argues for a better sexual culture and proposes a new moral context for women's desires, celebrating women's sexuality and passion, and defining young girls as nascent sexual goddesses who have every right to their lust and love. This book will generate much discussion and is recommended for undergraduate courses addressing issues of female sexuality. K. M. McKinley; Cabrini College

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