Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Germaine Greer on abstinence-ish

At the very beginning of
this show with 1970s feminist Germaine Greer (author of the Female Eunuch which I remember really liking when I was 14 or 15), she mentions a couple interesting anecdotes about young adult/late adolescent women and sexual decision-making.

1. One of her students didn't feel ready for penetrative sex, and eventually her boyfriend left her for it. She would meet men at parties to hook up with, and say "By the way, I don't do penetrative sex." and the men would just walk away. Which is a strange anecdote. The qualitative book _Hooking Up_ describes most hook-ups as not going that far, often just kissing (at least that's what they would tell the sociologist.) Meanwhile this woman's housemates all had boyfriends and were all sexually active and having penetrative sex "because it was required of them" in Greer's words, but they were less accustomed to sexual pleasure.

2. She says Sex in the City depresses her because the characters focus so much on men and sex.

Just anecdotes, but I find it fascinating from the perspective of the earlier wave of feminism and earlier feminist sexual values.

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