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Why has the Big O seduced so many feminists? May 1996

“The November/December 1995 issue of Ms., cover-lined HOT UNSCRIPTED SEX, showed a close-up of an African American woman licking her lipsticked lips. Despite all the feminist work that has been done in the last quarter-century to critique and challenge the male-supremacist construction of sex, none of the four articles inside made connections to the whole of the rest of women’s lives and status. Set in display type above one was a line from Barbara Seaman’s 1972 book, Free and Female: “The liberated orgasm is an orgasm you like, under any circumstances.” To judge from this issue of Ms., and from the shelves of women’s “erotica” in feminist bookstores, an unreflective politics of orgasm seems to have won out.”

Read the full article by Sheila Jeffreys at On The Issues magazine here.