Sunday, November 6, 2016

Book Review: ‘Women, Sexuality and the Political Power of Pleasure’

'Women, Sexuality and the Political Power of Pleasure’ by Susie Jolly, Andrea Cornwall and Kate Hawkins, begins with an interesting observation:  In discussions of sexuality, women are almost always portrayed as victims, and never as enjoying themselves, or as people with own wants and desires. This, the authors mention, is part of a wider network involved in commodification of women. It thereafter examines the role of pleasure seeking and its gratification relation to the reigning political perspective. The book notes the need for going beyond the established negativity of approaches to sexuality, which can act in an empowering way to tackle a host of issues relating to the body, from gender-based violence to sexual rights.  The book also mentions that the traditional studies on African sexuality (which primarily focus on reproduction, violence and disease) need to explore the area of desire and pleasure, to gain deeper insights into this complex subject, and for fresh perspective on strategic interventions for critical areas such as sexual rights, HIV/AIDS and development. This is the ‘fresh perspective’ that the contributors to this book bring, demonstrating that pleasure can be empowering not just for women but for young people, people with disabilities, marginalized groups more broadly, and for society as a whole.

This book is on a different perspective on crimes against women, and a welcome one too. The suppression of females by males, a phenomenon common during mating season, as far as other forms of life is concerned, and throughout the year as far as humans are concerned, is a favorite topic of mine. This book gives further credence to the views I have expressed on various platforms, that this issue needs to be thoroughly studied, afresh.

Humorous Quotations and Jokes for Atheists, Agnostics, and Secular Humanists Compiled by I. M. Probulos is a collection of tasteful humor that begins with a raw definition: Atheism is a religion the same way abstinence is a sexual position. The book then moves on to another aspect: If by some bizarre chance there turns out to be a god [...], I'm willing to bet he's an atheist too. How can atheism be a way oh thought, author wonders, and another one follows with atheism in a lighter vein: ‘Atheism is a religion like not collecting stamps is a hobby’. Nobody can miss such thoughtful ones, as, ‘God creates dinosaurs, God kills dinosaurs, God creates man, man kills God, man brings back dinosaurs.’ ‘Spoon feeding in the long run teaches us nothing but the shape of the spoon’, ‘My daughter went to a Baptism of a friend and innocently said, "Daddy, why is that man brainwashing the baby?" Truer words are rarely spoken’, are some of the other noteworthy stuff.

However there are a few sexual references that are not very tastefully done. But for that, this has a lot to fill a while.

Featured post

All my Books and all my Hubs

Sometimes I wonder , how is that each one of my friends happens to be so memorable a character? One among them, who is also a little mo...