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Sex Power Money

4.07  ·  Rating details ·  3,027 ratings  ·  245 reviews
Part comedy, part anthropological study, here is everything Sara Pascoe has learned from scientists, sex education teachers, pornographers and 90s films about love, cruelty, domination, masculinity, status, and economic pressures.
Is internet porn ruining marriage?
'Mind Rape' isn't a thing, is it?

Like her much-loved first book, Animal, Pascoe overthinks and overshares in th
Audible Audio
Published August 27th 2019 by Faber & Faber
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‘I began wanting to write a book about sex,’ explains Sara Pascoe, ‘but what I kept learning was that everything is connected to money.’ Yes, depressing, isn't it. That sums up the pattern of the book pretty well – it begins in a spirit of great, shall we say, socio-erotic curiosity, and ends up tangled inexorably with notions of transactional sex, so-called ‘erotic capital’, and the dispiriting process of jamming individual sexuality into the structures of a capitalist society.

Sara Pascoe is a
Amy Alice
Sep 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019, audiobook
Fantastic. She's just so well informed, clever, thoughtful, critical, balanced, and of course, funny. This took me through some highs and lows and made me keep rethinking everything I THOUGHT I thought about sex, power, money. The audiobook is amazing. ...more
Oct 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Worth it for her take down of the movie Indecent Proposal alone. She handles difficult subjects with humor and honesty but also the necessary critical eye. She looks at the evolutionary and societal aspects of the interplay of sex, power, and money and doesn't shy away from some uncomfortable realities, including looking at her own biases (which often reflect many of OUR own biases). Not always a comfortable read, but always an interesting and entertaining one. ...more
Sep 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I'm always interested to read a book by a comic, especially if they're writing on a particular subject. Any comedian worth their salt have the uncanny ability to see through bullshit. So, when they themselves have to write something which is fact based, you can rely on the quality of work they must have done to ensure that there's no bullshitting in their work. Aziz Ansari's Modern romance is a another good example apart from this book.

To be honest, that's the main reason I picked up this book.
Jan 31, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I may have given this more than the three if it didn’t dissolve into a rather tacky account of Basic Instinct. Line-by-line, and as far as I’m concerned, Ad Nauseam. I stopped mid-point through this script as I found myself constantly drifting off.

There are some genuinely funny pieces here and I so wish that the humour had been SP’s intention, but the funnies are infrequent and the sex is old. I never thought I’d say that. Ever.

I must say though; I did enjoy hearing about the journey she has tra
Liv Turner
Sep 03, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Funny as hell and sensitively considered with really intelligent discussions about 'maleness', porn, sex work, sexual politics and nature vs. nurture. ...more
Oct 14, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2019
Really well researched and accessibly written overview of the roles of sex, power and money in society and how they intersect/influence each other. Animal is one of my favourite books and there is no second album syndrome here for Sara, she infuses her points the same wittiness and charisma as in Animal and I couldn't stop bringing this book up when talking to my friends!!! Learned loads about sex workers and I really rate the accompanying podcast too which is well worth a listen. ...more
Stuart Dredge
This book is passionate and hard-hitting and *supremely* well-researched (but accessible in how she explains what she’s learned) and there are two or three proper laughs-out-loud per page, often delivered seemingly casually as asides or footnotes. I loved it greatly.
Nov 22, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This book really annoyed me and it’s taken me a while to work out why. To start with there is a lot in here about evolutionary biology. Now if that is interesting to you great, but for me it just seems like there is an over reliance on this stuff to explain behaviour, and whilst i don’t doubt there is relevance, I don’t think all modern behaviour can be explained by it and it annoyed me just how much of this was in here. She gives an anecdote of how she visited a women’s shelter and she started ...more
The narrative skirted around the subject in a poorly structured stream of consciousness instead of saying anything conclusive. Funny and compelling at times, but the books in the bibliography look way more interesting.
This is an interesting idea for a book but it has a few major problems, firstly why exactly is a comedian writing this, it's the sort of book an expert might write, or someone with experience of the sex industry might write with examples from their own life, instead we get a serious book by someone who's most famous for telling jokes, which leads to a second problem whichis a lack of jokes, now I can understand why she thought there was not a lot of humour in the subject but this is a wasted opp ...more
Oct 02, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I like Sara Pascoe a lot and her work is always well-researched and amusing, but this feels slightly strange and disjointed and ultimately it's not as good as Animal. It touched on some interesting points but overall I didn’t gain much from it.

Despite referring to plenty of academic sources throughout it’s also not referenced in-text, which is one of my pet annoyances in popular science/sociology books so I’m possibly letting that colour my view. It may have been this that made me see it more as
The Essex Reader
Oct 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This took me a long time to get through — even though it was fabulous. I agreed with a lot of Pascoe’s opinions and I love that she’s so honest about getting it wrong sometimes and exploring the limitations of her own experiences in relation to feminism.
Pascoe explores attitudes towards human sexuality, the evolution of homo sapiens and various aspects of gender politics. This was fascinating and amusing in equal parts. I didn't totally agree with all the points raised but it's still a thought-provoking book. ...more
Jennifer Richards
Hilarious, informative, educational, and thought provoking. What more could you want! I’ve just started listening to the podcast which is a brilliant accompaniment.
Jan 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sara Pascoe is a really good writer. I have read quite a lot of books by comedians about serious subjects and they tend either to be full of jokes but not really going anywhere or else they're collections of interesting science facts thrown together in no particular order and dotted about with enough humour to stop you falling asleep.
This, on the other hand, is a proper argument, bringing facts together in an order, evaluating them and going into some uncomfortable intellectual territory in pur
Emily O’Dowd
3.5 stars. I enjoyed this, but having a basic degree in psychology meant that a lot of the earlier parts of the book had a lot of information I had heard before, so I skimmed through it a bit. The part of the book exploring porn and sex work was really well done though, and I though Pascoe did a great job of acknowledging her own biases when it comes to these.

Emer  Tannam

I enjoyed this book, and it made me laugh while forcing me to confront a topic that I am very uneasy about, as is the author. I like how she presents scientific studies, while cautioning us not to extrapolate too much from studies on stoats, or from a small sample of humans. Her feminist voice shines throughout, and I found her arguments very sensible and convincing, especially in recognising the contradictions and ambiguities on the subject.
Sep 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is SO well researched, incredibly sensitive to all, completely accessible, and genuinely quite funny. Anybody who’s spoken to me in the past week will have had a million stats, facts, and theories surrounding sexuality, gender and porn thrown at them. Not sorry.
It’s rare to find a book that discusses such complex and often uncomfortable theory written in a way that is both entertaining AND accessible to people with understandings of all levels. To manage to keep the humour through
Bob Mcdermott
Nov 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
As a non-sciencey person I love evolutionary theory, and so both of Sara's books float my boat in terms of subject matter; I like learning about how are animal selves are sometimes at odds with how we are expected to behave in society and why we've grown into the shapes and sizes we are today. As the book suggests, we are just meat machines trying to make copies of ourselves.

The thing I really like about how Sara writes is that she is not laying down facts when there is doubt, even in her own op
Oct 24, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sara Pascoe’s SEX POWER MONEY is a book about feminism, porn, our biologies, and how all of these intersect. Pascoe explains how things are, which may not be a surprise to many, but she also explains the why - and that is what makes this book an essential read. It’s also very funny.

I’ve always been fascinated by discovering why things are sexist, why men are the way they are, why women are they way we are, and how far back we have to go to begin to understand how we got here. Pascoe delves into
Mhairi McCall
Feb 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Love, love, loved this.

It said so many things I didn’t know I wanted to say, and opened my mind.

My only criticism (would have liked to give it 4.5 stars) is that I did find the porn section a little too long, although it raised some amazing points.
Pascoe explores complex issues with sensitivity, humanity, and a clear desire to understand diverse perspectives. She does so in her frank, down-to-earth style and her explanations and revelations are rife with humour and insight.

The book is well-researched and some chapters are extremely illuminating on topics of social behaviour and expectations surrounding sex and dating, the science and psychology behind our concepts of masculinity and femininity, as well as exploring issues such as pornogra
Bethany Jackson
Sep 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really important reading looking at the relationship dynamics between money, sex and power. Sara has an amusing writing style without alienating the reader by bombarding them with facts as would be in an academic text. If you enjoyed/found her first book Animal: The Autobiography of the Female Body enjoyable/interesting then I would wholly recommend (I would suggest reading Animal first however, as there are reference to the findings in that book throughout Sex Power Money). Written from her poi ...more
Kendal Jones
Nov 08, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I listened to this as an audiobook and found it incredibly easy to listen to - Sara Pascoe is an excellent narrator and manages to make a balance between comedic observations and hard hitting facts/ opinions on sex and sex work.

I found that the book didn't always maintain a focused and consistent argument, but as Pascoe alludes to herself, the whole topic of sex, sex work and porn are not so easily defined, and twist and turn with complexities on both sides of the coin. Her belief that women sho
Laura Angell
Nov 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
"Sex Power Money" is so intelligent, witty and captivating, and is written with such care and consideration for both reader and subject - something not be downplayed or overlooked. Often I find that books akin to this one are either extremely patronising to us as readers, or take away any humanity and empathy from the subject being discussed. It seems to be a difficult balance to strike but Sara Pascoe does it brilliantly here.
This book has made me question everything I thought I knew about sex,
Sep 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is thoroughly well researched and the information explained in a way that is accessible and understandable without being patronising.
Sara's comedy comes through- relatable, charming, sometimes crude without being gross or demeaning.
The information in this book is essential- it's understanding of all sides, compassionate and although protective of women it does so without hating or blaming men. It's what feminism should be- says women deserve better, tries to understand the other side
Katy Wheatley
Sep 29, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sara Pascoe writes with humour, intelligence and clarity about a difficult subject. It's not always easy to read this, but it seems vital to me, in a world where we are increasingly polarised in our opinions to open up debate and allow thoughtfulness and room for complex thinking where not everything is cut and dried. Necessary reading. ...more
Dec 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Everyone should read this book, it’s amazing! You’ll learn, you’ll laugh and you’ll be shocked as well. Thoroughly enjoyed it and I highly recommend it. These are the topics we need to talk and think about, believe me you’ll finish the book but the thoughts and ideas discussed will stay with you for a while.
Sep 09, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Sara looks at the impact of porn on empathy, whilst busting several mythic about human anatomy, sex work and gender roles. These are complex issues, so I found this incredibly thought provoking. It’s inspired me to read more on these topics.
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Sara Patricia Pascoe) is an English comedian and actress. She has appeared on TV programmes such as 8 Out of 10 Cats Does Countdown for Channel 4, and Taskmaster for digital channel Dave.

Twitter @sarapascoe

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