FREE BOOKS Vagina AUTHOR Naomi Wolf AUTHOR Naomi Wolf – nikeshoxoutlet.us
Arnia Robinson in several places and calls her a dopamine researcher Marnia Robinson is an author not a scientist She promotes a type of non orgasmic sex called karezza and in my opinion gets a bit hysterical about orgasms Yes I am not a fan of Robinson although I think she means well What Wolf oted about dopamine was not out of context but still oting Robinson in an extremely pro orgasmic book struck me like having Rush Limbaugh deliver the keynote speech at the Democratic National Convention Robinson the last I knew was not about to say anything good about an orgasm so her appearance in Wolf s book was a bit curious and would suggest a hurried effort at research I did a ick internet search and found nothing from Robinson refuting Wolf s book It sort of struck me that a pissing contest is being avoided Although I will emphasize it was a March Monthly Idea Book uick search Another area of concern I think Wolf seemed to go a bit overboard with her reactions to negative references to the vagina I agree entirely that women should not be subjected to obscene language and that men should not only refrain fromsing such terms but to not think of women in such terms However as we all know such terminology exists and is widely All We Ever Wanted used by the Neanderthals amongs So how does one handle it During my working life I had been called various things of the four lettered persuasions some involving maternal sex and fellatio the first technically true the latter not If I were to take such things to heart I would have had to The Mavericks Ready-Made Family uit working at a very tender age So I regarded Wolf s claim of six months of writer s blocks over an ignorant reference to pasta vulvas a bit over the top It brought to mind something my mother said about the histrionics my cousin inflicted on the world when she was in high school A good six inches of hard manhood delivered fast and furiously would straighten that girl right out Hmmm what to do Naomi was already having technicolored orgasms with her man so what the hell does one do now regarding such histrionics Unfortunately my late mother is no longer available for comment I will say though that Wolf s point should be taken andnderstood by men This woman is the love of your life don t treat her or her vagina with disrespect and expect her to fly off to Oz in your arms If men spent as much time polishing their relationships with the women they love as polishing the fenders of their Dodge Ram pickups the world would be a far better place Like I say I immensely enjoyed this book and found myself in agreement with most of what she said I do think that Wolf tended to overstate her case Does the vagina affect a woman s thoughts and is it affected by thoughts I think so I believe that there is a definite brain genital connection in both women and men just like there is a definite brain gut connection Ever get butterflies in your stomach before giving a speech Has a dose of intestinal flu affected your thoughts Does this mean that women are incapable of being a CEO because their vaginas might take offense to a certain product line or corporate deal Absolutely not Can women experience the world in technicolor after having the right type of orgasm Well let me put it to you this way my own orgasms are paltry affairsputt putt putt and I am done Yeah it feels good but I can t say that I am particularly changed by the event But when my wife has an orgasm she flies off and circles the rings Saturn and she carries me along with her I see technicolor after one of my wife s orgasms so if it affects me like that I can only guess what it does for her So no I don t think Wolf is exaggerating I am being entirely honest here my wife s orgasms are far enjoyable for me than mine are So yep I think a woman can ride down the yellow brick road on the back of a magical nicorn named Orgasm and head off to Oz while pink and purple stardust emanates from her yoni that will take her man to the far reaches of the finite niverse and give him a glimpse of the Infinite Are women goddesses Indeed but it is that flakey part of me that has been off to Oz with my wife that believes that I have to admit I would have been happier if Wolf could have found some less moonbeamish language to describe this phenomenon But I also have to admit having been there with my wifeshe is indeed a goddess So is this a silly book Not for me I have experienced some of the things that Wolf claims Human beings have a remarkable capacity for intellect However we are the total sums of our evolution Our intellect has been created in an evolutionary blink of the eye compared to our sexuality When we try to intellectualize our sexuality we run into some powerful forces I think what Wolf was getting in this book was that we are still subject to the animal forces of our genes and we ignore them at our peril Here are two reviews that sum The Case of the Sin City Sister (A Divine Private Detective Agency Mystery up the problems and the strengths of the bookHuffington Post Naomi Wolf s Vagina Gets More Public Criticism And Faint Praise Than Any Vagina We Know Of by Nina Bahadurhttpwwwhuffingtonpostcom201209 Huffington Post Who s Afraid of the Vagina Brain Connection by James G Pfaushttpwwwhuffingtonpostcomjames g EDIT 1 4 2013 Re reading this review with a little passage of time I realized I forgot to mention that another thing that I really liked about this book was the chapter on how to appeal to a woman s goddess array Chapter 14 Radical Pleasure Radical Awakening The Vagina as a Liberator Again I find the moonbeam terminologynfortunate but the pearls of wisdom she provides should be a mandatory class in high school for all males with refresher courses offered periodically In essence the chapter states don t take your woman for granted treat her like you did when you were trying to impress her respect her help her and love her All seems to be common sense yet look at how many men treat their wives like an appliance a dinner machine and a sex machine We can do better guys and Wolf tells you how in one chapter Yeah be a wussie and buy her flowers and take her to dinner Gaze in her eyes spend time with her touch her and treat her like you love her and hang on to your hat the next time you jump into bed Ladies if you have a inattentive partner cast pearls before swine Make him read chapter 14 The other thing I like about this chapter was that she went into a bit of the bio chemistry of sex We try to rationalize sex with our advanced cerebral cortex but sex operates at far deeper and older sections of our minds Why are condoms so History of Western Science unsatisfying for an committed long term monogamous relationship Could it be that bysing a condom the biochemical communications is blocked the only part of our brains that realize that we had sex is on cerebral cortex The older down in the swamp sections of our brains saw no chemical messages absorbed by the genitals from the partner so was there any sex If you are in love and you are monogamous with absolute fidelity in my mind condoms are destructive to your relationship Note the strong emphasis on monogamous fidelity you are a complete idiot to not The Bears Reluctant Wolf (Sweet Water, use condoms and dental dams in a non monogamous relationships Wolf hints at some of this complexity in this chapter but she only speaks in terms of female receptivity to male chemistry I think it is very much a two way street males are chemically receptive to female chemistry and genitally and orally absorb female biochemistry from vaginal fluids In my mind this is the real communication during sex and the reason that I fly off to Oz with my wife s orgasms Loving monogamous couples should not block it with a layer of latex I also think it is good reason for men to take their time and stick around No need to hurry off You can only absorb this good stuff when you are in contact with it The biochemical communication during sex and its impact on love is an area that I think reuires a lot research Wolf gives it honorable mention but I think as a society we know very little Sex is a chemical wonder It is the attractant that gets together the adhesive the holds s together and the oil that lubricates a good working relationship or marriage Don t we as a society owe it to ourselves and our children to nderstand this process as much as possible Naomi Wolf was very distraught when she noticed that her sex life lost its poetic dimension One night out of desperation she prayed next to the stove In case you were wondering the stove was cold ironwood and completely irrelevant to the content of this book Bargaining with the niverse and any deity willing to listen to her plight she promised that if she could be healed she would share the experience and what she learned from it with everyone else and she would make money off of it She really is self entitled narcissistic out of her goddamn mind a woman who seriously needs to get a grip an incredibly selfless woman The niverse apparently had nothing important to do that day and made certain to remind Naomi that there are doctors before returning to trivial matters Turns out our poor writer was suffering from numbness due to some messed Grendels Curse (Rogue Angel, up vertebrae and needed surgery She can t dance like shesed to any but her poetic fucking was restored at last A woman of her word Naomi returned the favor and published a book celebrating the very heterosexual vaginas of privileged women with way too much damn time on their handsThis silly and maddening book talks a lot about a vagina brain connection This confused me but then again my vagina never transmitted messages to me from my cervix so this was obviously new territory for me She tries her best to Beach House Beginnings (Beach House No. 9, use some odd combination of science mysticism literature and cultural history to explain this to her readers She speaks fondly and nauseatingly about the painfully cutesy Goddess Array which she considers to be the set of behaviors a loverses to arouse his or her partner All of this in the name of making sex pathetically romantic for feminism Science is not exactly my thing Since it s also not Naomi s thing we apparently have one thing in common The only difference is that she will insist on writing about science and while I am not perfect I try my best to avoid talking out of my ass as often as humanly possible So I will keep the talk about science brief so that I don t end Billionaires Jet Set Babies up looking like an idiot andote a neuroscientist s response to Naomi s belief that dopamine is the ltimate feminist chemical in the female brain If that were true women with Parkinson s could never be feminists because that disease is caused by degeneration of the dopamine neurons If that were true feminists would be campaigning for disease is caused by degeneration of the dopamine neurons If that were true feminists would be campaigning for legalization of cocaine and crystal meth at least for women because those drugs boost dopamine levelsIn fact if that were true it would mean that the most complimentary thing you could say to a woman would be You sound like you re on crack Naomi Wolf you sound like you re on crack Basically the kind of science Naomi is prone to is looking p the definition of something and then jumping to insane conclusions to fit her cockamamie theories Now that we ve taken care of that we can go on with the rest of this scattered mess of a book Naomi has some serious issues with feminism lately She s got a grudge against second wave feminists Judging by her whining it s probably because they didn t fix everything for her so that she can stop having to think too hard about this ineuality shit Second wave feminists also didn t tell her the joys of having her boyfriend gaze at her yoni to learn secret truths while she reads Fifty Shades of Grey Nope Naomi had to actually find the time to learn about what she likes sexually while dealing with the reality of an Dark Sins and Desert Sands (Mythica unjust world like everyone else and that was apparently something she felt she shouldn t have to do Another thing Naomi likes to whine about is the so called hookp culture because casual sex makes her feel icky I can see why Casual sex and experimentation really doesn t fit into her very narrow Goddess vision Naomi s views on sex are extremely wholesome There s the candles The expensive flowers ordered in advance that somehow have to do with evolution The reservations to the fancy restaurant The kind gentle words The Goddess Array and the Goddess Network For some odd reason she thinks that no other woman has heard of this brand of romance and intimacy even though at this point it s become a clich She threatens men who do not fulfill these reuirements with some pretty harsh words Straight men would do well to ask themselves Do I want to be married to a Goddess or a bitch Unfortunately there is not physiologically much middle ground available for women Naomi you re seriously starting to turn me into a raging bitch with this two dimensional woman whose very fulfillment relies on a man s ability to remember her favorite flowers Another thing about feminism that really psets her is that it broke the association of heterosexual female sexual awakening with dependency on man They do not acknowledge this imaginary paradox of feminine autonomy coexisting with our feminine need of interdependence She considers this the central paradox of the female condition because of Eros and I consider it the central delusions of her idiotic mind She explains that women are just addicted to love in need of a partner because of nature and also because some of her favorite female writers artists and activists experienced an increase in creativity and passion because of a sexual awakening Apparently she thinks the sexual experimentation of these women are because they acknowledged Naomi s Goddess Array and because they realized that they need the dick because of their ravenous vaginas Someone seriously needs to tell Naomi that creativity and talent are not sexually transmitted diseases that only hetero women can become infected by In case all this candle lighting and reading Anais Nin to your crotch every morning isn t your thing don t worry she delves into Eastern Philosophy and Tantric sex practices next This is when we re introduced to the vagina whisperers One such individual is Mike Lousada London s very own tantric guru and special snowflake who fancies himself a vagina healer Naomi seems to consider him to be some kind of champion for women and especially sexual assault victims because for the American euivalent of 150 an hour he will massage the knots out of your vagina say Welcome Goddess to you and heal you sexually Now I nderstand that we all have to pay the bills but nless he spends his spare time volunteering at rape crisis centers he s either a fancy sex worker or a rip off artist Perhaps some kind of combination of both He prefers to call himself a sexual healer though and he gets very offended if you don t acknowledge his magic powers But who can blame him This is a man who claims to have seen an image of the Virgin Mary while gazing at the yoni in search of enlightenmentPersonally if some guy just stared at my twat seeking enlightenment I d be than a little annoyed But my idea of sexual practices that appreciate my vagina are a little different from Naomi s Naomi Wolf needs all this tender loving care though as her vagina is very easily traumatized I won t even get into the now infamous Cuntini incident that caused her vagina to suffer from writer s block There was another incident on a cruise with some moron friend who can only read Military books because he s an insecure mama s boy who needs to pretend he s in the military to feel like a man because according to him all modern fiction is targeted to women and all that woman y stuff just doesn t interest him I m going to guess this man doesn t read very much or every time he reads something and comes across a female character he shits himself and gets all pissed off because there is a woman in his book which is beyond his comprehension Everyone knows that women belong in binders Oh and there s sex in these military books And by sex and there s sex in these military books And by sex means There s rape LOL Naomi s response to her friend was to then go to bed weep for all the women vaginally traumatized by those words and then passive aggressively call him out in her book because being the martyred whiny victim apparently makes Naomi s vagina do a happy dance It s than a little insufferable Naomi means well She read a survey once about how Western women reported lower levels of happiness and satisfaction even though our freedoms have grown over the years And while feminists might well try to tell you that the continued existence of ineuality might just have something tell you that the continued existence of ineuality might just have something do with that Naomi would like you to know that really you just have a sad vagina in an overworked ndersexed world The vagina is a gateway to a woman s happiness and to her creative life and if we all just remember that life would just be one never ending orgasm no matter what happens This is the part where I d love nothing than to shake some of the loose screws out of Naomi s head Ineuality still exists no matter how mind blowing Wolf s orgasms are This childish view of empowerment does not address this fact presumably because it makes her vagina too sad to think about Her vapid idea of fantasy land happiness is based on the idea that we should just be sexually dependent on men to keep our The Forbidden Bride (The Hot Zone, unruly yonis satisfied and then maybe write a poem about our vulva All this sad traumatized vagina crap cuddlesp a little too close with the idea that male responsibility is dependent on female vulnerability It feeds into patriarchy it isn t helping women and it s really getting on my nerves I will continue to be dissatisfied with gender ineuality and while we re at it all ineuality If happiness for women means just getting fucked dumb deaf and blind I d rather be perpetually pissed off Her journey finally comes to an end with a completely Friday Night Mistress (Thorne Brothers, unnecessary description of her family trip to Greece This is when Naomi takes her self indulgent and over privileged prattling and turns that shitp to 11 She really is painfully out of touch if she thinks her mission to help all women was completed with this book when her vagina can afford healing sessions in the UK and then excursions to Greece when the most exciting place my vagina went recently was the drug store to pick p Icy Hot and disposable razors No matter how much information she vomits p from eastern philosophy literature pretend science and her love of hardcore eye contact and gentle massages during couple arguments this book is not some kind of thought provoking feminist work This is a book about how happy Naomi Wolf is about her sex life and she wants to help you fuck just like her There is nothing wrong with enjoying sex or knowing what you like It isn t even bad to write about it But just call it what it is At best this book is self help for privileged heterosexual women who somehow never heard of tantric sex At worst this book is a self important literary festival of misinformation that doesn t just straddle misogyny it dry humps it on the chaise lounge while getting high off all the scented candles Instead of imagining a better world for women or feeling proud to be a woman I imagined that I was enduring a long winded conversation with a ditzy friend who is just going on and fucking on about her sex life Her boyfriend like a sexual Christopher Columbus discovered all her euipment and finally thought to ask What does this button do my Goddess instead of just reading her poetry and sending flowers that he imagined might look like female genitalia To make it worse she s trying way too hard to be profound and lyrical about it all because she accidentally found Anais Nin s Wikipedia page Her face is one of both joy and concern as she takes my hand in hers She finally stops gushing over her boyfriend and explosive orgasms for a moment because this is important She looks me in the eye and lets me know that as a newly independent woman she feels it s her duty to tell me that if I just found myself a man who can awaken my creativity I d stop being so you know bitchy Whatever girl This book was like tearing the scab off a freshly healed wound It s been so long since I ve had to deal with the shittiness that is evolutionary psychology and then Naomi Wolf comes along and reminds me of just how terrible it is all over againWell let s do thisVagina A New Biography is Wolf s syncretism of Eastern teachings about sex particularly Tantra with Western medicine with a particular focus on the way women in the West regard their vagina It s the fifth book in the Banging Erly enthralling and totally fascinating Vagina A New Biography draws on this set of insights about the mind vagina connection to reveal new information about what women really need and considers what a sexual relationship and a relationship to the self transformed by these insights could look likeExhilarating and groundbreaking Vagina A New Biography combines rigorous science explained for lay readers with cultural history and deeply personal considerations of the role of female desire in female identity creativity and confidence from interviewees of all walks of life Heralded by Publishers Weekly as one of the best science books of the year it is a provocative.
Naomi Wolf Ê 7 ReadThe Vagina MythJaclyn FriedmanSeptember 11 2012The American Prospecthttpprospectorgarticlevagina myth Naomi Wolf s yoni worship isn t just silly it s dangerousThis summer Michigan state representative Lisa Brown was banned from the House floor when she dared to say the word vagina in a debate about proposed restrictions on abortion Just three weeks ago Todd Akin revealed what many Republicans believe If you get pregnant it can t have been rape It s been a year of politicians trying to force women to have medically Checkered Past unnecessary transvaginalltrasounds and personhood amendments granting one celled organisms rights than women as long as the cell resides in the woman s Submission (Dangerous Liaisons uterus If there ever were a cultural moment crying out for an impassioned defense of the vagina it would be now It s beyondnfortunate then that Naomi Wolf s new book Vagina A New Biography is such a failure Vagina A New BiographyBy Naomi Wolf Ecco Press 400 pages 27Wolf is best known for her 1991 text The Beauty Myth but recently has made headlines for claiming that penetrating a sleeping woman represents a model sexual negotiation and saying that rape victims should lose their right to anonymity if they report the crime to authorities She was inspired to write Vagina by a personal medical crisis in which her sexual response was diminished by what turned out to be a mild form of spina bifida Using her intimate journey back to sexual health as the frame of reference the book s core argument is that the vagina and the brain are essentially one whole system and that the vagina mediates female confidence creativity and transcendence What starts as a biology lesson Cradle of Solitude (Rogue Angel, uickly evolves into an evangelist text On her magical mystery tour of female sexual biology Wolf cherrypicks and misinterprets research to support her conclusion that G spot orgasms are better for women than clitoral orgasms though she seems to also know that the G spot is actually a part of the clitoris and that having as many of these special orgasms as possible is what enables women to be creative ambitious emotionally available and spiritually enlightened The rest of the book explores the ways that men and less enlightened feminists have harmed women s ability to have this particular kind of orgasm and offers her recommendations for how ofs can experience it Her prescription We should all worship the vagina as a goddess and men should be nicer and tender to their women Wolf s big finish is her conclusion that our species original sin was deviating from our earliest tradition of reverence for the feminine and for female sexuality and that waves of tragedy for women for men and for a now The Greek Tycoons Achilles Heel unbalanced now plundering civilization follow from this original alienation Throughout she writes with the fervor and overwrought prose of a would be prophet who believes she has discovered a previouslynknown truth that must be shared with the worldMuch ink and many pixels will be spilled about the biological determinism that Rinaldos Inherited Bride (Italian Brothers, underpins Wolf s central thesis and for good reason Most peoplenderstand that it s insulting to men to suggest that they re helplessly beholden to the impulses of their sex organs or that their character is reliant on their sexual satisfaction It should be no different for women It also makes no sense What of the many women whose spina bifida can t be cured like Wolf s was Does their diminished capacity for Wolf s favorite orgasm really diminish them as people Surely celibates women with abusive partners cisgender men and all manner of people not having spiritually mindblowing high orgasms her term regularly prove themselves capable of remarkable creativity ambition and loveIf Wolf had written a personal memoir called My Vagina this self indulgent tunnel vision could be perhaps excused But she s presenting it instead as a Universal Theory of Women and that s both offensive and dangerousThe book collapses The Secrets of a Courtesan (The Brides of Fortune under the weight of a breathtaking narcissism If it doesn t apply to Naomi it doesn t exist Despite the title this is a book explicitly and exclusively about straight vaginas Lesbians and bisexual women They re a mystery to her beyond the scope of the book Women of color are rarely referenced appearing mostly as victims goddesses or Josephine Baker Women who don t have vaginas and people with vaginas who aren t women Never heard of em Nor does she bother to define key terms like female body female brain or femininity since clearly hernderstanding of the phrases is An Officer and a Princess (Royally Wed: The Stanbury Crown, universal If Wolf had written a personal memoir called My Vagina this self indulgent tunnel vision could be perhaps excused But she s presenting it instead as a Universal Theory of Women and that s both offensive and dangerousIn making her case for the vagina as destiny Wolf ignores profound cultural realities She asserts without sarcasm that nowadays women can do whatever they wish sexually and be bad girls with little stigma a fact that would come as a surprise to women of color Sandra Fluke and any female survivor of sexual assault She insists that women who are alienated from their sexuality ornsatisfied with their sex lives lack only male partners with better skills as though misogyny poverty and any number of other structural oppressions don t exist She draws on ancient cultures to prove that the vagina s right place is as an object of worship though these same cultures also believed the sun revolved around the Earth She s even ntroubled by the fact that many of the ancient traditions she cites so credulously valued the vagina for the ways it supposedly benefits men
in taoist sexual texts women were nderstood toTaoist sexual texts women were nderstood to medicinal fluids from various parts of their bodies The man s goal for the sake of his own health was to stir the release of these precious fluids Wolf s self absorption also produces terrible journalism She may have had her pelvic nerve cured and her Technicolor orgasms restored but she still suffers from a profound lack of curiosity She is given to sweeping generalizations about gender In a typical passage Wolf asserts that in some senses having to do with consciousness sex for women is a different thing altogether than sex is for men She provides scant evidence for this assertion nor does she consider is for men She provides scant evidence for this assertion nor does she consider What about intersex people Do women who are sexually attracted to women really have different neurobiology from straight women She s silent on the matter though she s happy to assert that what straight women need is for men to bone them Wolf would have me say make love lest they turn into harpy shrews These are seriously the only two options she provides Straight men would do well to ask themselves Do I want to be married to a Goddess or a bitch Unfortunately there is not physiologically much middle ground Either they are extremely well treated sexually or else they become physically ncomfortable and emotionally irritable Like a New York Times trend piece she relies heavily on the anecdata of the privileged informally polling her friends students at Oxford and Anaiis Nin to support her pet theories The following exchange with therapist Nancy Fish needs no context whatsoever as it serves as a template for nearly every exchange in the book What I am really teasing out is whether your clinical experience confirms what is right now just an intuition for me with some science to hint in that direction prompts Wolf Fish replies I definitely think based on my clinical experience that what you are saying is very very valid Never is Wolf led down a path that contradicts her expectations Never do two experts or two scientific studies have conflicting findings Even her many informal surveys of friends of friends on Facebook turn Platinum Cowboy up no examples of anyone whose lived experience challenges Wolf s worldview Wolf s road to vaginal discovery has only two bumps the medical condition that kicked it off and the occasional man who does or says something anti vagina causing Wolf to have to lay down and have a good cry or suffer months of writers block Women never say anti vagina things in Wolf s world presumably because in her world women are vaginasIt s as if Wolf is Rip Van Winkle having fallen asleep shortly after The Beauty Myth was published in 1991 and only wakingp in time to tell The Proverbial Harry S. Truman us we should all be having sex like she doesIt s no surprise then that everyone from antiuities experts to sex scientists have been challenging the rigor of her research My area of expertise is feminism so I found her review of feminist approaches to sexuality particularly galling It s as if Wolf is Rip Van Winkle having fallen asleep shortly after The Beauty Myth was published in 1991 and only wakingp in time to tell After The Midnight Hour (Midnight, us we should all be having sex like she does She seems bizarrelynaware for example that Natalie Angier wrote Woman An Intimate Geography in 2002 even though was a New York Times bestseller and was a finalist for the National Book Award Having devoted an entire chapter to Victorian England s relationship with the vagina she reduces all feminist thought and activism on the subject since the early 90s to one paragraph Instead of citing work like Angier s or other feminist achievements from the last two decades the Riot Grrl movement bell hooks trilogy on love and sexuality Slut Walks and the SisterSong Reproductive Justice Collective she invokes contemporary straw feminists who want to glamorize the clitoris at the expense of the vagina and insist that all liberated women fuck like men whatever that means Thank goodness Wolf has finally arrived to reveal the truth about our bodies to Retrain Your Anxious Brain usUltimately what would Wolf haves believe about our bodies It s hard to tell She claims to want to ndo the ways in which women are reduced to their genitals but spends most of her project telling s that as goes the vagina so goes the woman In the first chapter she goes into great detail about the ways different women s neural wiring can result in a wide range of sexual preferences and responses but then spends multiple chapters later in the book credulously oting Tantra advocates who say things like For some women the lightest touch of a feather can be orgasmic But most women in this culture need a lot of friction based stimulation which suggests that there is loss of sensitivity for them She suggests that we re hardwired to like rape fantasies and rough sex but tells s we shouldn t indulge in them because we ll get addicted and ignore our somehow eually hardwired need for safe tender gentle lovemaking with a committed guy So we re all biologically predisposed to get off differently but if we want friction or kink we re damagedWolf does gesture at some real and rgent issues The pandemic of sexual violence against women around the world the misogynist microagressions that women have to negotiate daily rampant media sexualization that goes along with a deep silent river of female sexual dissatisfaction It s not that I don t share some of Wolf s alarm at the current state of sexual affairs I wrote an entire book to help women reclaim our sexual agency Rape is an ongoing public health crisis that s treated as the status o as inevitable as the weather Sex education in the US is a shameful shambles and we re all in desperate need of accurate and judgment free information about our bodies and our sexual health Meanwhile we live in a deeply sexualized culture in which corporate media politicians and religious leaders constantly tell women and girls that the most important thing about them is what they are or aren t doing with their sexuality This sexualization has real conseuences It can impair girls ability to perform math and logic tasks and exacerbate eating disorders and depression it creates in all of s whatever our creates in all of s whatever our Knightleys Tale unrealistic often negative expectations about sexuality alienatings from our genuine sexual needs and boundaries Which is exactly why this book is so harmful It s just as sexualizing to sacralize vaginas as it is to demean them Whatever Wolf s intention Vagina is just another billboard telling women and girls that the only thing that matters about The Magnificent M.D. us is what s happening down there We get no closer to a freer world when we worship one specific genital configuration or one particular kind of sexual experience Real sexual liberation will only be achieved when we re fooling around on a genuinely eual playing field About the AuthorJaclyn Friedman is author of What You Really Really Want The Smart Girl s Shame Free Guide to Sex and Safety and editor of Yes Means Yes Visions of Female Sexual Power and a World Without Rape She is executive director of Women Action the Media and a charter member of Counteruo a coalition dedicated to challenging the ways we respond to sexual violence Why does the author feel the need to write a book about the vagina Because as many as 30% of western women report that they get little pleasure from making love Because bad sex is linked to depressionA lot of my readers who are in their twenties their first concern is about porn addictionPornography has speededp sex so there is a lot less foreplay kissing or going to second or third base The desensitisation of the brain s response to porn is not good for intimacy Yeah that s right I read a book called VaginaNaomi Wolf and I have a complicated relationship The Beauty Myth changed my life when I read it as a teenager But then she broke my political heart when she became pro life after being pregnant Still I feel compelled to read her books based on that early and powerful influenceBut this one was a dud She gets two stars instead of one because she s Naomi Wolf but I really didn t think this was a very good book Essentially I felt like she couldn t decide between trying to be scientific or trying to be philosophical about the vagina She would start many chapters or themes with scientific studies and then branch off from there cite some anecdotal evidence and then say something like it is too far fetched then to extrapolate XYZ and ABC about the vagina and then it would devolve into what I often thought was mumbo jumbo She would Mail-Order Mistletoe Brides use science as a launching point for her own wild theories Not that all of them were wrong necessarily it just felt like she wassing hard science to try and support mental meandering Why is this book not a must read for everyone who owns a vagina and everyone who does not own a vagina but hopes to have a partner who will share hers The biology is important to Naomi Wolf s argument as is the chemistry but if you don t like that sort of thing ignore it and focus on The Goddess Array What woman does not wish to be treated according to the Goddess Array If treating a woman that way makes her happier healthier and willing to share I mean her life not just her vagina then what man in his right mind would not be willing to study the Goddess Array learn it and apply it throughout his lifeThat said there appear to be doubters everywhere many of them women beginning with the female critic who savaged the book in the New York Times I turned to GoodReads and also found reviews by women readers here who savaged Vagina As if enough vaginas had not been savaged already What am I missing here Why am I so attracted to this book which others find badly researched badly thought out and badly writtenPerhaps at this point I need to establish my bona fides as a man I am a husband of 43 years father of three grandfather of 7 I was an infantry platoon leader in the 101st Airborne in Vietnam Since then I have been a bicycle racer a coach and a scoutmaster When I read Vagina I realized that simply put I could have easily treated my wife better making both of The Surgeons Miracle / Dr Angelos Baby Bombshell us happier throughout our marriage by making the Goddess Array a part of our everyday lives What woman does not want candles and flowers to be touched lovingly to have her man look deeply into her eyes and tell her every day how much she is loved and valued and how beautiful she seems to him What woman does not want to be taken seriously to truly be listened to when she speaks and to be treated with decency and honorWhy do American Men treat their women like Goddesses when they are courting them and then ignore them denigrate them and treat them like the hired help after the honeymoonMs Wolfe has her theories and they may or may not be valid but I found the arguments in Vagina compelling I have asked my wife to read it but whether she does or not I intend to let the Goddess Array guide me for the rest of our marriage orntil she tells me to just The Beast Within (Knights of White uit telling her that she is loved touching herlistening to her lighting candles and bringing her roses I don t think that Ms Wolf expects her to tell me to stop I don t expect it either This is a book that will make youestion your faith in everything It is not good at all I really enjoyed Naomi Wolf s new book Vagina A New Biography Of course I would I am a heterosexual male monogamist and a first class flake so I was like a kitten with a bowl of warm milk It puts me in mind of that song from The Sound of Music These Are A Few of My Favorite Things In a way I wish some one else beside Wolf had wrote the book then I would not be forced to acknowledge that much of the world thinks this is a silly book and most of the people who think that are women I really like the idea that a woman s vagina and brain are one We men have been accused of thinking with our little heads for centuries so it refreshing to see a feminist make such a claim for women and their vaginas I also like the idea that my wife is a goddess and her yoni is sacred and by appealing to her goddess array and engaging in deeply penetrative coitus I can send her galloping off on a magical The Best Man in Texas unicorn of orgasm across a technicolor rainbow of pheromones from my arm pits and a love potion number 9 of feel good hormones and neurotransmitters absorbed from my semen This is all good stuff and I loved reading about it and yes I am exaggerating but only slightly what Wolf has said in the book But I can alsonderstand where many women may not The Prodigal Comes Home (Mirror Lake, uite like the idea that their thinking is so strongly colored by their vaginas or that they need a man to help them see in technicolor I also think the Wolf is getting worked over with some past due karmic debts from some feministsI saw numerous references to Julian Assange in many negative reviews While I consider myself a pro feminist supporter I am in no way familiar with the nuances and politics within the movement but I definitely get the feeling that Wolf has stepped on a few toes in the past and her book is something of a pair of combat boots in a ballet Much of what I read in Vagina I already knew I have an interest in sex like some people have in astronomy However there was for me one piece of valuable information that I never realized before The female pelvic innervation is not only far complex than Inderstood but also subject to a lot of variation from woman to woman This explains the mystery of vaginal orgasms verses clitoral orgasms As I have long suspected Freud s claims of a woman s maturity determining the type of orgasm she experiences is bullshit If a woman lacks the nerve connections for deep vaginal orgasms then she will experience clitoral orgasm maturity has nothing to do with it For me this was worth the price of the book Another fascinating bit of knowledge for me was that although I knew nipple stimulation causes oxytocin to be released I did not know that nipple stimulation is actually Beast Of Darkness (Knights of White used in natural child birth procedures to initiate labor contractions It amazes me that nipple stimulation would have this kind of power Wolf provides some cautions that a woman may want to be choosy about whom she gives access to her bra especially near the end of her pregnancy Oxytocin is a bonding hormone Helen Fisher has offered much the same advice regarding whom one sleeps with Some of the reviews I read took Wolf to task regarding theality of her research I suppose one could ask to what standard does one hold such a book It is what I would consider a popularization not a scientific document She provides extensive footnotes and to be honest I saw very little that would give me pause although bear in mind I am a hobbyist not an expert She did rely a good bit on anecdotal evidence but I also believe that she adeuately identified what was valid research and what was anecdotal That said there was one area of concern for me regarding research that cast a wider shadow on the entire enterprise She Hawks Way Grooms (Hawks Way uotes An astonishing work of cutting edge science and cultural history that radically reframes how wenderstand the vagina and conseuently how we nderstand women from one of our most respected cultural critics and thinkers Naomi Wolf author of the modern classic The Beauty MythWhen an nexpected medical crisis sends Naomi Wolf on a deeply personal journey to tease out the intersections between sexuality and creativity she discovers much to her own astonishment an increasing body of scientific evidence that suggests that the vagina is not merely flesh but an intrinsic component of the female brain and thus has a fundamental connection to female consciousness itselfUtt. Ook Club an awesome monthly reads group about sex and sexuality run by Hannah Witton Lucy Moon and Leena Norms I have enjoyed all of the previous club reads to one extent or another but I don t think I can say that about Vagina What starts as a promising book about women s relationships with their vaginas kind of like a scientific look at the same ideas explored from an emotional angle in The Vagina Monologues eventually turns into a poor mash p of biological determinism and evolutionary psychology Here s how Vagina went from good to boring to bad to worseI was actually very excited to read Vagina for so many reasons I was aware that Wolf has been a source or topic of controversy in recent years but I had genuinely appreciated The Beauty Myth and will stand by the idea that it s a seminal work of feminist scholarship I was also looking forward to learning about vaginas because I don t have one and men don t really learn enough about them in school I m always interested in learning about perspectives that are by dint of circumstance inaccessible to me It was with some exhilaration that I proudly read this book in public during my flights home from a work trip as well as in the airport lounge on the layover I wanted people to see a man reading a book called Vagina and if it led to any genuine conversations if I could help people see that there is value in deconstructing stereotypes about gender and what is appropriate knowledge for our genders then cool Indeed my seatmate on my last flight actually asked me about the book after we had already struck p a general conversation However at that point I was only a few chapters in and the book was still good and interesting so I was much positive about it than I feel nowPerhaps Vagina is so promising because of its context Wolf opens with a lengthy anecdote about a reduction in sensation felt as a result of pelvic nerve damage something she eventually fixes thanks to medical consultations and surgery She expresses her amazement that if she hadn t linked the disappearance of her rosy afterglows with a physical ailment she might not have discovered the problem at all During this period she learned about how the vagina is connected to the brain and it apparently awoke a deeper curiosity in her Hence a biographical look at vaginas I guess And I was totally on board because as The Vagina Monologues asserted a decade before this book our society has a hang Taming the Demon (Demon Blade up on vaginas They are a taboo subject yet beneath the surface so many ofs brim with intense curiosity and fascination And I agree with Wolf that women have too long have been made to feel dirty or ashamed and that many of the modern standards of beauty tell women that their natural vaginas are bad and need to be perfumed made p even altered to become acceptableAlthough initially nsettled by the title of Part 1 Does the Vagina Have a Consciousness and its implications of far too much mysticism for my taste Wolf s zealous commitment to scientific language and citing research won me over I was learning things about female physiology that I hadn t known And Wolf explores many of the physical explanations for why many women have difficulty achieving orgasm as expeditiously as men This whole idea of course is hugely parodied and constantly referenced in our comedy men just want Tabitha in the Moonlight uickies women need candlelit dinners and flowers and commitment and then there s some kind of punchline that is almost certainly misogynistic and sometimes also emasculating We re socialized to see women s needs asnimportant at best and weak or repugnant at worst without ever really stopping to ask why So I approve of Wolf attempting to ncover some of the science behind these differencesAlas even in this first part there are moments when I had to pause and blink and maybe do a double take Wolf likes to make a lot of generalizations particularly when it comes to findings about hormone levels She begins to mix science with anecdotesI experienced some of the thoughts of the terus myself In 2000 I wrote about how oxytocin had made me gentler conflict averse and basically nicer when I was pregnant My A Time to Heal uterus was doing some of my thinking for me in spite of my will and mediating my consciously autonomous consciously assertive feminist brainNow let s be clear I have nothing against anecdotes Interesting stories are the life blood of non fiction What s problematic here is the way Wolf seems to accord anecdotal evidence the same level of privilege as scientific evidence She constantly mentions hundreds of responses she receives from people in response to articles she has written as if this correspondence should have the same weight as lab studiesIt s very easy to do bad science Last Week Tonight with John Oliver very recently did a whole bit on this So a science writer has a duty to her readers to distinguish between reliable and potentiallynreliable or flawed studiesWolf doesn t do this She relies a great deal on studies on rats and ses them to draw conclusions about human sexual behaviour and yeah we do tend to study rat brains and then draw conclusions about human brains but at
no point does Wolf stop and remind s that hey rats are not humans and maybepoint does Wolf stop and remind Valentines Cowboy us that hey rats are not humans and maybe is going on here At one time she cites a study that had nineteen participants without mentioning anything about the possibility of small sample size biasWorse still Wolf compounds her habit of mixing science and anecdotesI conducted informal interviews with groups of women with whom I met both in person and online I told them about the possible effects of semen and then I asked them to remember back to a relationship in which they had at first religiouslysed condoms and then had stopped The Truth About Jane Doe using condoms Same guy same sexual style same scent any differenceI saw looks of shocked recognition cross my interviewees faces Totally different said Julia a graphic designerEmphasis mineWhat No Do not do this Telling people about the effect you want to measure is called confirmation bias and it is a huge no no Entire scientific protocols are designed to avoid this very serious problem Further asking people to remember back is fraught with problems our memories are so very fallible Taken together it should not be surprising that Wolf got the reaction she did It s like telling people most robberies are committed by shifty guys in ball caps right before you ask them if a shifty guy in a ball cap was lurking outside a jewellery store that was robbed Chances are they will remember the guy vividly even if he didn t existThis is is also possibly a case of spurious correlation if the couples had progressed to a point in the relationship where the condoms came off it s likely there were other factors that made the relationship good and that could very well be the cause of the better sexWolf goes on to sayBut I do think it is important tonderstand what may happen to the female mind when we do take in semen When a man comes in a woman s mouth she may feel energized when he comes in her vagina it can boost her tenderness and if Meston and Buss are right help elevate her moodSeriouslyNaomi Wolf is seriously telling women that semen has brain altering properties and they should get themselves of it In their vaginas In their mouths Just all the semen EverywhereLook it is possible that Wolf is right and semen does have such properties But because of the way she presents these ideas by conflating possibly Mediterranean Men Bundle unreliable scientific studies with anecdotal andnuestionably flawed stories we cannot responsibly accept her conclusion So I m not saying she s wrong about semen or about Tantra or about vaginal pulses I m just saying that her writing The Indian Tycoons Marriage Deal undermines the credibility of her explanations This is not a scientific book it is a heavily opinionated book masuerading as scientific and that is something else entirelyThat whole semen thing comes from the last chapter in which Wolf dispenses advice for how to pay attention to a woman s sexual needs Some of it is cringe worthy while some of it is sweet and sensible and probably worth remembering Unfortunately Wolf presents this advice as a kind of lessons learned from all this scientific research and I have to take issue with that Science is great at explaining how things work but it is not a great tool for deciding why we should do things I hate evolutionary psychology so much partly because it is so difficult to distinguish between biological and cultural causes but also because it tends so dangerously towards biological determinism It s true on me level we re all just suishy meat robots But we re suishy meat robots with a diverse cornucopia of cultures and practicesBiological determinism is hugely problematic in the fight for social justice It s a bedrock of arguments to support oppressive practices And Wolf demonstrates surprising support for these ideas and for ideas about gender essentialism She continually refers to male brains and female brains as if these are concrete things they aren t It is true that there are sex linked differences to the brain but they are far nuanced and complicated than inferred from Wolf s casualse In particular there are epigenetic factors at work Plus neuroplasticity means that cultural influences could potentially affect our brain wiring as well Wolf is at best being irresponsible in failing to elucidate the complexity of the origins of these perceived differences in the brains of men and women A reader could be forgiven for thinking from this book that the differences between the sexes were a settled matter of scientific record rather than the intense source of debate and further study they continue to beI should probably have seen the red flags earlier on In her introduction Wolf casually mentions she is going to ignore LGB experiences because they deserve whole books of their own It was basically a bald faced this is hetero white feminism deal with it and I remember a few alarms going off when I read it but I trudged on In retrospect considering the other problems with this book that statement is so much harmful Firstly notice that Wolf doesn t even mention the T A etc Not everyone with a vagina is a woman and not every woman has a vagina but Wolf blithely Holding Tight (Five in a Bed Book 3) uses one as synecdoche for the other Secondly claiming you re only going to talk about straight women to keep things simpler isn t just a cop out it s offensive to everyone It further otherseer women setting The Mistress of Pemberley: An Erotic Pride Prejudice Sequel (Secrets of Pemberley Book 1) up heterosexuality as normative andeerness as deviant something that can be sidelined for later books It might be less obvious but I also don t see this as a great thing for straight women it asserts a rigidity to sexuality and gender identity that does not necessarily exist It s possible to be straight bi gay or ace but it s also possible to locate oneself somewhere outside of in between or in transition between these restrictive categories Wolf seems so intent on liberating the One Eye Closed (The Pack, understanding of the vagina but for who Why gatekeepWolf is also super moralistic when it comes to porn She minces no words as she describes the way habituation to porn affects men and women creating impotence While I agree that there elements to porn that are problematic and need to be addressed I just find it so disappointing the Wolf chooses to betterly polemical here She talks to a bunch of male and at least one female sexual healers or whatever but does she ever talk to a sex worker To a porn actor To anyone who makes porn or erotic art I kind of feel like they have interesting things to say about vaginas and sex but I guess Wolf wants to discount themSo I guess what disappoints me about Vagina to bottom line this already ridiculously long review thanks for sticking with me if you ve read this far is that it tries to be too many types of book at once It wants to be scientific but it leans on anecdotes and mysticism It wants to be mystical yet it insists on trying to find parallels between the East and the West and I can t speak for Eastern practitioners but I m sure they are very tired of Westerners coming around and borrowing appropriating their exotic beliefs for other purposes It wants to be empowering yet it carves out a specific category of woman and then speaks only to them There are some really interesting facts in this book and even some good science but these are buried beneath layers of poor journalistic choicesI want to be clear that I m not taking issue with the idea or intent of Vagina just its confused and Malones Vow unsound execution However if you read the book and liked it I d be happy to have some civil discourse about it in the comments Or come joins in the Banging Book Club Goodreads group EDITEDI CHANGED MY MIND Naomi Wolf in general and this book in particular have been mired in controversy and showered with praise alternately I find myself somewhere in the middle I see its limitations and problems but don t think its entirely harmful and Wolf herself does try to acknowledge any flaws or biases her and her book may haveOverall I learned some things I m shoc This is a difficult review to write I absolutely LOVE reading about sexuality neuroscience tantric practices and perceptions about orgasmic pleasure these are incredibly important topics We carry such burdensome beliefs concerning human sexuality barbaric beliefs that cloud our minds from what is otherwise life affirming bliss we are born judgment free and open Roughing it with Ryan unburdened by the labels and divisiveness that so many ofs learn throughout life we learn dogma and ego and certainty shallow ideas that prevent s from experiencing the divine in our every breathI should have loved this book it should be amazingThese are wonderful topics I love where her heart is in wanting to write this book a richer and deeper nderstanding of both the scientific and spiritual aspects of sexuality so perhaps that s why I felt so disappointed reading this this disappointment climaxed during her visit to the sacred spot massage workshop where she writesI was skeptical still that a night in the hands of a stranger could be so life changing I couldn t imagine doing it myselfAnd then she went home really she went homeCould she seriously not imagine Did she actually lack even the imagination to do what every woman in the room was doing She then heaped condescending praise on those women somehow oblivious to the fact that every person in that room has a better story to tell than Naomi Wolf but in this book you re trapped in Naomi Wolf s judgmental ego and those beautiful stories of those nameless goddesses perhaps they went to discover transcendent pleasure and bliss those stories are completely ignored left to be told by braver and less judgmental writersShe later makes an appointment with a sexual healer and then systematically refuses to do anything sexual She wants to learn but apparently not at the expense of challenging her cruel judgmental world view Why write a book about what you refuse to learn about what you refuse to doImagine writing a book about cooking while refusing to cook or even eat the foods you write aboutShe then refers to this same sexual healer as a whore but you know the good kind like Pretty Woman in reverse She directly invokes the whore with a heart of gold stereotype and seemed cynically skeptical at his audacious and far reaching claims Ironically she remained ignorant of her own far reaching claimsIf you re at all open minded about sexuality or gender roles it s hard not to be continuously insulted while reading this bookMany reviewers have pointed out the problems with her scientific nderstanding although annoyingly it seems she has the right science but she goes about it with haphazard assumptions and makes a mess of it she stumbles and plods through research papers doing mostly guesswork and badly misrepresenting every aspect of scienceFor example she clearly has no nderstanding of what a control group is but aspect of scienceFor example she clearly has no Black Bottom Stomp understanding of what a control group is but refers to control group where there are no obvious controls or where there wasn t even an experimentNaomi you are not a control group a single person can not be a control group that s not what a control group is Those dakinis you interviewed were not a control group those were human beings you were interviewingIn her conclusion she tells the story of seeing a forest fire near Petra while vacationing in Greece While watching the fire she realized that the original sin did not as the Judeo Christian tradition has it originate in human sexuality Our species original sin was in deviating from our earliest tradition of reverence for the feminine and for female sexualityPerhaps because I was not raised with such silly mythology I don t think of the original sin when I see a forest fireI don t think seriously of original sin Consider ournderstanding of ourselves this earth this Geographies, Mobilities, and Rhythms over the Life-Course universe there is knowledge in this world much of it available for free on wikipedia that far transcends such archaic and cruel notions of original sin But to Naomi Wolf there IS an original sin and it will burn down cities in Greece and kill innocents all because we deviated from our reverence for the feminine I ll agree hers is slightly less barbaric than the original sin described in the bible but it s an awful and hateful belief to carry around in ones mindThis is where the reader also has an epiphany that Naomi Wolf is so steeped in her own Judeo Christian social constructs that she really cannot imagine allowing herself a sacred spot massage or experiencing first hand transcendent orgasmic bliss instead she holds in her mind that humans are sufferingnder an original sin Now sure she claims that our original sin lies in five thousand years of shaming it I thnk she means the vagina but when she describes ancient tantric practices yoni worship and The Goddess Array I guess those didn t exist in the last five thousand years or does she just mean this is a western original sin Or does she just mean this is a silly idea in her head that has no relevance to the beautiful myriad of human sexual experienceOccasionally she makes strong assertions without any reference which are completely falseFor examplethe porn industry is now larger than conventional film records books and video combinedYou can Google this the porn industry is smaller than each of those industries Porn brings in about 14 billion per year whereas conventional film records and books bring in 40 billion 15 billion and 28 billion respectively I m not sure what she means by video I certainly hope she s not referring to the 90 billion cable television industry or the 20 billion local television industry Porn may be big business but it s smaller than each of her examples and obviously much smaller than the combined revenue of those industriesOther times she makes inarticulate statements that don t seem to relate to her topic and somehow still gets things wrong here s a fun example where I bet no one else will call her onIn Manhattan the Private Eyes Gentlemen s Club advertises with sings on top of taxicabs A few years ago the women s faces in such ads simply looked fetching and seductive About a year ago the women began to gaze into the camera with an expression that was slightly frightened or angry Recently I noticed faintly but Tempting Kate (Regency Quartet, unmistakable on a sign for the Private Eyes strip club that on thepper cheekbone of a lovely model advertising the club there was now a single drop Was it a tearI don t particularly care about strip clubs but Private Eyes sits right between the Broadway Dance Center and the Al Hirschfeld Theatre and my apartment It s literally just two buildings down from where I live On the same block there s also several restaurants a homeless shelter luxury condominiums and well it s New York Private Eyes is just a strip club They have a simple logo of drawn COMIC BOOK eyes staring over the words private eyes I pass by it every day as I walk to work there s no tear there s no anger it s not even a photo Google private eyes nyc and you can see for yourselfAll that said I did Progress or Collapse uite like her artful descriptions of her own orgasms I could read an entire book of Naomi Wolf describing her post coital seemingly synesthetic joy the singing dancing colors oh Naomi don t stop Butnfortunately that s not the book she wrote Instead she plods through topics of science and spirituality with haphazard guesswork doing no justice to any of the very fascinating topics she referencestl dr go find a beautiful lover that thinks you re wonderful and don t read this boo. And deeply engaging book that elucidates the ties between a woman's experience of her vagina and her sense of self; her impulses dreams and courage; and her role in love and in society in completely new and revelatory ways sure to provoke impassioned conversationA brilliant and nuanced synthesis of physiology history and cultural criticism Vagina A New Biography explores the physical political and spiritual implications of this startling series of new scientific breakthroughs for women and for society as a whole from a writer whose conviction and keen intelligence have propelled her works to the tops of bestseller lists and firmly into the realms of modern classi. .