The Girl Wants To: Women’s Representations of Sex and the Body
Coach House, 1993
From Kirkus Reviews
A ripe, raunchy, romantic collection that laughs in the face of standard notions of female sexuality. Thirty-nine writers and artists, both famous and unknown, demonstrate women taking control of their bodies and redefining love and lust in ways that range from passionately lyrical to hard- core steamy. In “Isle of Skye,” Rebecca Brown reveals the private musings of two women from different countries trying to communicate through a language barrier; when they still don’t connect after intimate moments in which they make up words they “can’t write or say, delicious, private, warm as thighs,” we see that fear represents an even greater barrier. Barbara Gowdy’s “We So Seldom Look On Love” dives into the psyche of a necrophile who can find “no replacement for the torrid serenity of a cadaver” to illuminate not something sick, but something shockingly seductive. Mary Gaitskill’s essay, “The Rose Taboo,” explains what in many circles would be considered un-P.C. empathy and admiration for Axl Rose of the band Guns N’ Roses. Erica Jong contributes her usual in the form of “Fruits & Vegetables” and other poetry–lots of moans and thrusts. And Roberta Gregory’s outrageous comic strip “Bitchy Bitch Gets Laid” defies description. By and large, poet Crosbie (Miss Pamela’s Mercy–not reviewed) makes keen selections–although some narratives, like Kathy Acker’s “New York City in 1979,” are too heavy on the feminist jargon to be readable, and the point of reproducing photocopied female genitalia remains opaque. Sexy, fierce, riveting. A great bedside read. — Copyright ©1994, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.