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Vagina: A New Biography [Hardcover]

Naomi Wolf
4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
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Book Description

Aug. 31 2012

One of our bestselling and most respected cultural critics, Naomi Wolf, acclaimed author of The Beauty Myth and The End of America, brings us an astonishing work of cutting-edge science and cultural history that radically reframes how we understand the vagina—and, consequently, how we understand women.

A “New Biography,” Vagina is at once serious, provocative, and immensely entertaining—a radical and endlessly fascinating exploration of the gateway to female consciousness from a remarkable writer and thinker at the forefront of the new feminism.


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Review

Naomi 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 ... The science of female arousal is complex and woefully neglected, and Wolf has done us all a favour by trying to drag it into the mainstream -- Jemima Lewis Mail on Sunday Wolf's tome could not be better timed ... at a time when Western women's bodies have never been more highly politicised, the one person who might be able to shine a ray of light ... has to be Wolf. Perhaps this history will do for 21st century activism what The Beauty Myth did for 1990s feminists ... Wolf is exploring territory we haven't heard about since Germaine Greer in the 1970 -- Viv Groskop Independent on Sunday Worth respecting, even celebrating ... there is [here] a very intriguing thesis about love ... If you are one of those School of Cosmo feminists who has been arguing for decades that women should be more like men sexually ... then Wolf's take is genuinely revolutionary -- Sarah Vine The Times Part memoir, part cultural history and part scientific journey around women's sexuality, the best elements of which illuminate how little women generally know about their own anatomy -- Emma Brockes Guardian Writing with her signature blend of poetry and polemics, Naomi Wolf delivers a fiercely courageous portrait of female sexuality in the twenty-first century. As usual, Wolf writes what others are afraid to say. -- Susan Cain, author of New York Times bestseller QUIET --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

From the Back Cover

An astonishing work of cutting-edge science and cultural history that radically reframes how we understand the vagina—and consequently, how we understand women—from one of our most respected cultural critics and thinkers, Naomi Wolf, author of the modern classic The Beauty Myth.

When an unexpected 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 itself.

Utterly 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 like.

Exhilarating 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 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 conversation.

A 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 classics.


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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5 stars
Most helpful customer reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars worth reading Dec 16 2012
By Barbara
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This is a book that would help women.men and the medical community to understand how women's bodies work.
It might get rid of the shame,the old wives tales that are still prevalent today.
Naomi Wolf delves right into her topic and does a great job educating her audience.
I would highly recommend this book for both men and women.
Barbara
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Tub of Rubbish: Vaginetics, by N. Wolf Hubbard Dec 27 2013
Format:Hardcover
In this flaky feminist romance manual masquerading as body science (doubling as unstated promotion for Scientology principles), Naomi Wolf is alarmingly astonished to learn that the brain is connected to the nervous system is connected to assorted erogenous sensory inlets. Too bad her brain wasn’t connected to anything resembling logical sense when cobbling the dubious demagoguery of this book. A dumpsite for heaps of half-truth and dippy conjecture, its partisan mush is discharged from narcissistically self-reverential sexual agonizing coupled to gender polemics, cherry-picking from neuroscience select facts to be churned through the author’s fallacious reasoning only to spew a crackpot quasi-mystical spin on female genitalia – honestly, she’s a whisker shy of positing ‘vaginal engrams’. Thick with flowery schmaltz, "Vagina" reads preachily well-meaning if neurotically preoccupied and inadvertently farcical in its retrograde advocacy, but on inspection it’s impossible to abide Wolf’s asinine misrepresentations.

Science is descriptive, not prescriptive. Contrary to prefaced denials of the latter, Ms. Wolf can’t resist masturbatory editorializing amid the anatomy lessons she beds herein.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Most Excellent May 7 2013
By Lucinda
Format:Hardcover
I wish every man involved with a woman would read this book. It gives information that would make anyone a better lover, as it gives a very thorough account of a woman's needs. It is also an extremely well researched book. Naomi Wolf interviews leading scientists, historians and even takes a tantric sex class. It is also a book that would help every woman understand herself better. It was eyeopening for me in a lot of ways. I really recommend this book for anyone interested in learning about woman, and how sexual norms throughout the world and over time have affected us all.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Best book in years Sept. 4 2013
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
This should be required reading for every heterosexual couple before living together. There is a wealth of valuable information in here that can change one's life for the better. I bought a second copy just to loan out to my friends!
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5.0 out of 5 stars A fantastic and provoking read. Aug. 18 2013
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
I loved how Naomi put it all together with history, psychology, physiology and spirituality. Now I understand why sex is so good for us. A real sexual awakening. Profound and enlivening. Thank you Naomi.
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