America’s Next Bill Clinton!

“Unhooked: How women pursue love and crap …”

Has anyone read a book called “Unhooked: How Young Women Pursue Sex, Delay Love and Lose At Both”? I heard about this book from a feminist I’d been working with on some student activism issues, and also heard a few of my female friends mention it.

By the time I finish any book, I can always tell if I hated it liked it, but I don’t really know with this book.

It brings up a good point and takes a stand against sex-positive feminism in taking the position that sexual politics and the power thereof do not translate into true political power in feminism. In fact, it might add to the plight of women. Just from that chapter alone, one could write a whole damned essay on feminist theories and personal responsibility.

But at the same time, it also covers the lives of college students and the “hook-up” culture, featuring the lives of many young women who, caught up in the casual sex culture, were unable to have healthy, loving relationships. Its attribution is, as if, somehow casual sex leads to an inability to love.

Furthermore, it treats heartbreaks, broken relationships, unrequited love (or as I like to call it, unrequited interest, as “love” is built in a relationship, and not just through mere association with someone) as if they are cataclysmic events that are harmful to young women and men. They are not. They are pretty healthy. They are a part of being an adult and social interaction. I’ve bad my share of bad (as well as good) relationships, unrequited interests, and all those things covered in the book, and it’s only made me a better person. So, I am failing to understand the author’s point.

What I find problematic is that the author presupposes that, somehow, we can’t have both. She supposes that, somehow, without love, that college students will grow old to be like that lady in “Great Expectations,” sitting at home wth a bunch of cats.

What if, it’s just that college students – and especially ambitious ones, are being promicuous because they’ve not yet (since their standards and dreams are so high) found the person who is fitting enough to love? Does this mean, then, that they ought to throw away the condoms, stay away from the bars, and just be old and boring?

It also talks about the academic challenges of college and how, because careers and academics are considered more important than love, many women are choosing the formers over the latter, and instead, choosing to “hook-up.” I get a sense, and perhaps I am being defensive here, that the author is advocating love and marriage over academic and career achievements. This, for me, opens a whole other dialogue about that Betty Friedan brought up in the “Feminine Mystique,” which, ironically, was mentioned in the book.

The book also attributes the casual sex culture with the Vagina Monologues and my favorite play, “Because He Liked to look at it.” Its message was, essentially, raising awareness about female sexuality has somehow been responsible for the sexual behavior of women that ended up hurting them. I am not a big fan of using the play as political activism, but I don’t like the idea of bashing it.

My biggest issue with the book is, like many other studies of sexuality, it only addresses relationships in a heterosexual sense. There are many of my friends who go through the same “hook-up” culture as homosexuals, both males and females.

I don’t know …the majority of the book reads like a bad episode of Real Life or Queer as Folk (straight style), but it also brings up very interesting feminist perspectives, weaving together the various movements and waves. If nothing else, it’s making me think. In all, it’s a good book. There are some quite touching parts to the book, while other parts just makes me want to throw the book out the window. It’s sort of like a roommate – sometimes you love it, sometimes you hate it.

Bottom line I drew from this book: everything in moderation in terms of both casual sex and falling in love. I don’t think the author said this, but it’s what I drew from it. There’s Marc’s creative nature at work for you.

I don’t know what to make of this book …but, if you feel like discussing it, the copy I currently have is yours. Drop by the house any time and pick it up.