There Have So Been Books About Female Sexuality in the Past 35 Years

In a recent piece in The Guardian, “Feminism in the 21st Century,” Zoe Williams claims that no one has talked seriously about female sexuality since the ’70s: “The last person to make any serious noise about female sexuality was Shere Hite; that was nearly 35 years ago.”

This is a claim I see all the time, and it’s starting to make me feel like I’m delusional.

But unless it’s a mirage, I am staring at a shelf full of zines and books from the last 35 years that address women’s sexuality seriously, whether in fiction or theory. Williams also says she’s never read an account of a woman’s period starting. An anthology completely devoted to first-period stories, My Little Red Book, just came out in 2009. And what about Judy Blume with her famous period scene? She’s still in print. I have long suspected there was a law that every anthology about women or feminism had to include at least a couple of those, so I find this dubious.

Here’s a short list of books of various sorts (novels, theory books, memoirs) that are all related in some way to questions of female sexuality and that I can see from where I’m sitting…

Yes Means Yes: Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape

Full Frontal Feminism

One of the Guys

He’s a Stud/She’s a Slut


Female Chauvinist Pigs

The Female Thing

Sexual State of the Union

A Girl’s Guide to Taking Over the World

Angry Women (also Angry Women in Rock)

The Sexual State of the Union

No Means No


I Love Dick


The Surrender

What You Really Really Want


The Lisa Diaries

One of the Guys

Live Nude Elf


Catching a Wave

Sex, Art and American Culture

Growing Up Female

Feminism and Pop Culture

Defending Pornography

Ecological Feminism

Gender Outlaw


No Turning Back

We Don’t Need Another Wave

Look Both Ways


The Hearts of Men

And I throw away books all the time!


Filed under Ada

7 responses to “There Have So Been Books About Female Sexuality in the Past 35 Years

  1. Zoe

    Wetlands by Charlotte Roche.

  2. Surely you’re not suggesting all these books constitute a bad thing?

    The best of British luck to you.

    Fond of the concept of your site, just as a side note. In the illustrious words of our muscle proud Arnold S, “I’ll be back” (if you’ll have me)

  3. Pingback: Weekly nomz – edition three | Visions of Arcadia

  4. What happened to you guys?! I miss posts from you!!

  5. It’s been months since you’ve updated but I just found this blog and really want to interview you for my senior thesis (about nostalgia and feminism, holy crap!) pleaseee reply with your email, or drop me your contact info here:

  6. Is that the u of c library?

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