An urgent account of sexual politics, feminism, and the rules of power in America-and a potent vision for the way forward
As a veteran feminist and agenda-setting sex educator, Jaclyn Friedman is on the frontlines of the war for equity between the sexes. In Unscrewed, Friedman brings her sharp expertise and incisive observations on the state of sexual politics to the fore, sparking a culture-wide rethink about sex, power and what we accept.
With reportage and verve, Unscrewed
builds a searing investigation into the state of sexual power in America, and outlines how to make real progress toward equality. Friedman reveals that the anxiety and fear women in our country feel around issues of their sexuality are not, in fact, their fault, but instead are side effects of what she calls our "era of fauxpowerment," wherein women have the illusion of sexual power, with no actual power to support it. Exploring the fault lines where media, religion, politics, and education impinge on our intimate lives, Unscrewed
breaks down the causes and signs of fauxpowerment, then gives readers tools to take it on themselves.
"Lively, emboldening...a potent, convincing manifesto on how female sexual equality marches onward despite cultural roadblocks."—Kirkus
"Friedman marries theory, politics, activism, and pop culture in a way that is simultaneously conversational and polemical."—Library Journal
"This book should be required reading in schools across the US. Honest, sometimes painful, and brimming with empathy. It couldn't have come at a better time. Jaclyn draws you in to a world of possibility. I am hopeful reading her writing. There is so much work to do to change the systems in which we live and Jaclyn gives us practical applicable ways of doing it."
--Tatiana Maslany, Emmy-winning star of Orphan Black
is not just a book you should read, it's a book you'll love to read. Jaclyn Friedman's writing sings, and makes thinking about necessary and important issues a real pleasure. I can't wait to read it again."
--Jessica Valenti, author of the New York Times
-bestselling Sex Object
"In this visionary and necessary book, Jaclyn Friedman cuts through the hypocrisy, mixed messages and confusion about sex, women and power. Unscrewed
is firmly pro-pleasure, but also bitingly critical of the same old sexism dressed up in the language of "empowerment" -- it's power, Friedman argues, that matters, and she neatly eviscerates the formal and informal barriers that keep women from accessing it. Required reading for anyone who cares not just about women and sex, but about building a better society, Unscrewed
will leave you with just one question: Can Jaclyn lead the new sexual revolution and unscrew us all?"
-Jill Filipovic, author of The H-Spot
"From the very first page, I realized that 'it isn't just me. Other women struggle with how to have the hot empowered sex feminists are always raving about.' I wish I'd had this book when I was 20. I'm so glad to have it now, to read, to teach to my students and share with my homegirls. Jaclyn doesn't just lay out all the problems with contemporary discourses on sex. She also shows us the way forward by profiling some of the path-breaking feminist badasses that are leading the way. It goes without saying that Jaclyn herself is one of these badasses. Every chapter reminds us in tangible ways, that these problems can be solved. We can get this right. There is hope. And the very first step is to get and read Unscrewed. "
Brittney Cooper, Crunk Feminist Collective co-founder and author of Eloquent Rage
"Gender equality has enough superficial solutions, and Unscrewed
is a precise rebuke to the notion that signifying progress is enough. Jaclyn Friedman's book reminds men that it is our job to end misogyny and rape culture, and tells women not to expect anything less."
- Jamil Smith, journalist and essayist
"As our society has become increasingly obsessed with the paradoxical pursuit of simultaneously controlling and liberating women sexually, there is no better expert than Jaclyn Friedman to help us dissect the complicated and surreal world we are currently living in. Sexuality has always been a tough and complicated topic for women but Jaclyn somehow always manages to make it fun and easy to talk about. You will find yourself nodding in agreement and whispering "yas" over and over as she captures the essence of every thought and feeling you've always had, but never shared. Jaclyn Friedman is the quintessential modern sex expert, at once understanding and empathetic yet honest and raw."
-Elizabeth Plank, Senior producer and correspondent, Vox Media
"Friedman makes her case with warmth, understanding and hope."—BUST magazine
"Friedman offers a relevant and well-researched overview of the current state of feminism in the U.S."—San Francisco Book Review