Vagina: A New Biography

Naomi Wolf

Vagina: A New Biography

As Naomi Wolf embarks on a life-changing journey to tease out the link between sexuality and creativity, what she discovers is revelatory and exhilarating - a scientifically supported link between the vagina and female courage, assertiveness and consciousness itself. Emboldened by these new discoveries she looks back in history and show us how the vagina was considered sacred for centuries until it began to be cast as a threat. Even now in an increasingly sexualised world, it is thought of as slightly shameful. Why? Vagina: A New Biography combines science with cultural history to explore the role of female desire and how it affects female identity, creativity and confidence. 2.0 out of 5 based on 7 reviews
Vagina: A New Biography

Omniscore:

Classification Non-fiction
Genre Sex & Sexuality
Format Paperback
Pages 416
RRP
Date of Publication September 2012
ISBN 978-1844086887
Publisher Virago
 

As Naomi Wolf embarks on a life-changing journey to tease out the link between sexuality and creativity, what she discovers is revelatory and exhilarating - a scientifically supported link between the vagina and female courage, assertiveness and consciousness itself. Emboldened by these new discoveries she looks back in history and show us how the vagina was considered sacred for centuries until it began to be cast as a threat. Even now in an increasingly sexualised world, it is thought of as slightly shameful. Why? Vagina: A New Biography combines science with cultural history to explore the role of female desire and how it affects female identity, creativity and confidence.

Reviews

The Mail on Sunday

Jemima Lewis

I find it hard to believe, as Wolf does, that even mildly insulting jokes about female genitalia can injure women both mentally and physically, creating a tense or unresponsive vagina. And if sexual satisfaction is really so vital to female confidence, and creativity, how does one explain history’s many overachieving spinsters? Where did Jane Austen and Elizabeth I get their cojones? Most of the book, however, rings abundantly true. Wolf has tried hard to look at female sexuality as it really is, not as pop culture or political correctness would like it to be.

01/09/2012

Read Full Review


The Times

Sarah Vine

For all the solipsism and self-regard ... there is still something worth respecting, even celebrating, in this book … She argues, with really quite commendable courage, that being fulfilled as a woman means being treated like a lady. And if that isn’t a radical feminist message I don’t know what is.

03/09/2012

Read Full Review


The Sunday Times

Daisy Goodwin

Nobody would grudge Wolf getting her mojo back, but for single women, or those in less than perfect relationships, Wolf’s prescription for goddessdom will seem as unattainable as a couture ball gown from Chanel. I am sure she doesn’t intend to set up yet another set of standards for women to judge themselves by, but there will be a lot of readers of this book who will feel inadequate because, to adapt the line from When Harry Met Sally, they “are not having what she’s having”.

02/09/2012

Read Full Review


The New Yorker

Ariel Levy

Is it going too far to say that Wolf's book, which clearly belongs to the same realm of the erotic imagination as the [Fifty Shades of] Grey trilogy, is itself a kind of pornography? Wolf conjures a fevered, enchanted world where female consciousness is situated not between the ears but between the legs...

10/09/2012

Read Full Review


The Guardian

Jenny Turner

I read this book in utter bafflement … Wolf's take on classic women's liberation is perverse ... All of [her evidence is] really just connected by the life, the interests and the ego of Naomi Wolf herself.

08/09/2012

Read Full Review


The New Statesman

Helen Lewis

Reading this book left me downcast. Has the Naomi Wolf I loved in The Beauty Myth really drowned in a soup of psychobabble about “energies” and “activating the Goddess array”? It seems so. The science was not engagingly presented, the transcendentalism left me cold, and the remedial advice – that men should pay more attention to their female partners’ pleasure and maybe give them a nice surprise once in a while – is banal in the extreme.

05/09/2012

Read Full Review


The New York Review of Books

Zoe Heller

Wolf remarks more than once in this book that she has no wish to be “prescriptive,” but prescriptiveness, alas, is her compulsion. She won’t be able to rest easy until all of womankind has heard her gospel and has started having sex that is not just pleasurable, but worthwhile. Her refusal to acknowledge the heterogeneity of female temperament, of female sexual proclivity, of female desire, would be galling, if it were not so dotty. As it is, her willingness to position herself as a visionary sexual prophet inspires a sort of affectionate awe.

27/09/2012

Read Full Review


©2013 The Omnivore