sex, money, and miscellany: talking about what matters

books (etc) on pointe

that is, difficult and unerringly demanding of a spiritual level of personal and emotional accuracy, or likely to push you to a whole new dimension. This book list is not meant to be comprehensive. It’s stuff I like.

  • The Ethical Slut: Easton and Hardy. It’s known as the polyamory bible, but I don’t care if you’re straight, boringly vanilla even by your own standards, and unfailingly, unerringly monogamous, this book is a must-read. Even just for the “How to f**k up” list by Elise Matheson (which I can’t easily locate in the second edition–anyone know if it got edited out? It’s on alt.polyamory here: thank goodness) it’s worth it, but the whole book has ideas about sharing and communication that could change the world if everyone paid attention.
  • The Vagina Monologues: Eve Ensler. Better seen that read, better seen at a college-produced V-Day performance (on or around Valentine’s Day, and profits go to stop violence against women) than anywhere else, but if all else fails read the script/book. It will transform your picture of vaginas, of sex, of speaking out, of how words can transform culture. Bring tissues for tears of joy and tears of laughter.
  • Stone Butch Blues: Leslie Feinberg. Because trans stories are better told than described, because it has a boatload of accurate lesbian history in fiction’s clothing, because it’s not heartbreakingly, unstintingly middle-class. And because Leslie rocks in the way that only a rabble-rousing community organizer can.
  • Odd Girls and Twilight Lovers: Lillian Faderman. Because every movement needs a solid history or six. This is one of the good ones for lesbian history in America.
  • S.E.X.: Heather Corinna. One of the greatest guides to sex, sexuality, and bodies I have ever seen. Written by the founder and head of, ideal for middle school and up. Pictures, frank discussions of all the options, nonjudgmental, fantastic. It’s the closest you can get to the UU/UCC OWL curriculum in a book.
  • The Good Vibrations Guide to Sex: a comprehensive guide to sex, which spends a lot of time on toys. Good Vibrations is a clean, well-lit, woman-and-queer-friendly sex toy story that started in San Francisco and is now also found in Boston and on the internet. They are one of many (It’s My Pleasure in Portland, Oregon; Smitten Kitten in Minneapolis, Venus Envy in Ottawa and Halifax, Babeland in Seattle and New York) that are moving sex-positive culture out of the back room and into the front window.

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