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Anticlimax: A Feminist Perspective on the Sexual Revolution
The sexual revolution of the 1960's and 1970's is generally considered a time when the women's movement made great strides. In this provocative book, Sheila Jeffreys argues that this much heralded sexual freedom did not constitute any real gain for women but continued the tradition of their oppression. At the root of sexual liberation, Jeffreys finds an increasing eroticiz ...more
Paperback, 360 pages
Published September 1st 1991 by New York University Press
(first published 1990)
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Sheila Jeffreys is not as well known, at least in the United States, as other late second wave radical feminist theorists such as Mary Daly, Andrea Dworkin, and Catharine MacKinnon. However, Jeffreys is perhaps the best late second wave radical feminist writer to read if one wants a clear understanding of those features of the ideology which have rightly alienated subsequent feminist and LGBTQ positive thinkers as well as the important insights of late second wave radical feminism which third w ...more
What and whose sexual revolution? Sheila Jeffreys writes with stunning insight about this anticlimactic revolution which supports male supremacy and does nothing to liberate women's sexuality. First wave feminists called this male dominated approach to "free love" the "omni-sexual virus". Any one, any time, any where is fair game. Why resist male dominant vs. female submissive sexuality being repackaged as revolutionary? Read this book and find out why.
Sheila Jeffreys writes and teaches in the areas of sexual politics, international gender politics, and lesbian and gay politics. She has written six books on the history and politics of sexuality. Originally from the UK, Sheila moved to Melbourne in 1991 to take up a position at the University of Melbourne. She has been actively involved in feminist and lesbian feminist politics, particularly arou ...moreMore about Sheila Jeffreys...
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“The main problem for women trying to emulate male sexuality is that as a ruling-class sexuality, it is constructed around the fact that they have a subordinate class on whom to act sexually. Women are that subordinate class. The elements that constitute male sexuality depend upon the possession of ruling-class status such as objectification, aggression, and the separation of sex from loving emotion. Women are bound to be unsuccessful in seeking to acquire a form of sexuality which depends upon the possession of ruling-class power. It might be possible for some lesbians to seek a close emulation of ruling-class sexuality because they are able to practise on other women. Heterosexual women cannot practise ruling-class sexuality on men because they are not the ruling class. All that heterosexual women are in a position to do is to accommodate male sexual interests... In male supremacy men's sexual access to women gives them power and status. It does not make much difference who initiates the act, the men still gain the advantage.”
“It should not be a surprise to find that s/m fantasy is significant in women's sex lives. Women may be born free but they are born into a system of subordination. We are not born into equality and do not have equality to eroticise. We are not born into power and do not have power to eroticise. We are born into subordination and it is in subordination that we learn our sexual and emotional responses. It would be surprising indeed if any woman reared under male supremacy was able to escape the forces constructing her into a member of an inferior slave class.”More quotes…