All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an by Rebecca Traister

By Rebecca Traister

A nuanced research into the sexual, monetary, and emotional lives of ladies in the US, this “singularly successful work” (Los Angeles occasions) by way of Rebecca Traister “the so much excellent voice on feminism within the country” (Anne Lamott) is “sure to be vigorously discussed” (Booklist, starred review).

In 2009, the award-winning journalist Rebecca Traister began the entire unmarried Ladies—a booklet she notion will be a piece of latest journalism—about the twenty-first century phenomenon of the yank unmarried girl. It used to be the yr the percentage of yank ladies who have been married dropped lower than fifty percentage; and the median age of first marriages, which had remained among twenty and twenty-two years outdated for almost a century (1890–1980), had risen dramatically to twenty-seven.

But over the process her enormous examine and greater than 100 interviews with lecturers and social scientists and trendy unmarried ladies, Traister stumbled on a startling fact: the phenomenon of the only girl in the US isn't a brand new one. And traditionally, while girls got recommendations past early heterosexual marriage, the consequences have been titanic social change—temperance, abolition, secondary schooling, and more.

Today, purely twenty percentage of american citizens are wed by way of age twenty-nine, in comparison to approximately sixty percentage in 1960. The inhabitants Reference Bureau calls it a “dramatic reversal.” the entire unmarried girls is a awesome portrait of up to date American lifestyles and the way we came, throughout the lens of the only American girl. overlaying classification, race, sexual orientation, and choked with shiny anecdotes from attention-grabbing modern and old figures, the entire unmarried girls is destined to be a vintage paintings of social heritage and journalism. Exhaustively researched, brilliantly balanced, and advised with Traister’s signature wit and perception, this publication might be shelved along Gail Collins’s while every little thing replaced.

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Extra resources for All the Single Ladies: Unmarried Women and the Rise of an Independent Nation

Example text

Meagher, writing in 1929, spelled out the stakes of female sexual satisfaction for the health and harmony of the new age when he linked sexual dissatisfaction with misguided militant activism. “The driving force in many agitators and militant women who are always after their rights, is often an unsatisfied sex impulse, with a homosexual aim. ”38 Together, these three values—women’s dependence on men, women’s organic heterosexuality, and the deviancy of clitoral sexuality—defined modern heterosexuality for women.

Experts first assumed and then detailed, among other things, the masculine character of the clitoris and its association with infancy, the shift from clitoral to vaginal sexuality as part of a biological imperative toward reproduction, and the association between women’s psychological makeup and their success or failure entry into heterosexuality. Unlike Freud, who had radically detached sexual desire from sexual object choice (who a person chose to have sex with), many of his followers argued that heterosexuality was an inevitable outcome of bodies.

In this new context, the girl’s (masculine) clitoris would no longer be her dominant sexual organ. Freud acknowledged that the repression of the clitoris was never complete. ”71 As he explained, such a monumental transfer of erotic zones and shift in libidinal organization put women at greater risk of psychological ailments than men. If the transfer was not complete and the clitoris remained the center of a woman’s sexuality, she ran the risk of suffering from such psychological problems as penis envy, hostility toward men, hysteria, and neurotic discontent.

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