"The Clitoral Truth:
The Secret World at Your Fingertips"

by Rebecca Chalker

published in 2000 by Seven Stories Press

illustrations by Fish

What female body part is the size of a fingertip, has over 6,000 nerve fibers, is the key to women's sexual pleasure, and has managed to elude countless female anatomy books?Answer: The Clitoris.

With over 6,000 nerve fibers concentrated into a radius the size of a fingertip, the clitoris is the one body part whose sole purpose is pleasure. Despite this fact, the clitoris has been dismissed, undervalued, unexplored, and misunderstood for hundreds of years. But the truth is out there, and internationally celebrated sex educator Rebecca Chalker has found it. In her new book, The Clitoral Truth, Chalker offers the only mainstream, in-depth exploration devoted solely to women's genital anatomy and sexual response. Her highly informative tour of the clitoris reads with the exuberance, clarity and accessibility of a sexuality workshop, and readers everywhere-be they straight, gay or bisexual-will learn about the countless sexual sensations it can bring, and discover how to enhance their sexual response in a more concrete way than ever before.

The Clitoral Truth also examines the ways in which women are enhancing their sexual response through masturbation, the use of sex toys, videos, books, workshops, individual coaching sessions, and the Internet. For over 2,500 years, the clitoris and the penis were presumed to be equivalent in all respects. After the 18th century, however, this knowledge was gradually suppressed and forgotten, and the definition of the clitoris as an extensive organ system all but disappeared. During Chalker's tenure as a member of the Federation of Feminist Women's Health Centers, the group helped to further the study of the clitoris with unprecedented anatomic precision. The Clitoral Truth investigates every nook and cranny of this magnificent organ to see how its many parts work together to produce orgasms.

The Clitoral Truth also delves into the feminist and sexologist controversy over female ejaculation and surveys the numerous ways that women have begun to transform the deeply entrenched male-centered model of sexuality to redefine their sexuality to emphasize full-body pleasure. Enhanced with personal accounts, comprehensive illustrations, and a thorough appendix of female sexuality resources, this book helps women and their partners understand and expand their sexual potential and work toward becoming independent sexual beings.

Rebecca Chalker is an internationally renowned women's health writer and activist. Her books include The Complete Cervical Cap Guide, Overcoming Bladder Disorders, and A Woman's Book of Choices: Abortion, Menstrual Extraction, RU-486. She edited A New View of A Woman's Body and How to Stay Out of the Gynecologist's Office. She has published articles for Ms., The Village Voice, and Self, among other magazines and academic journals, and often lectures on women's health and sexuality issues. Chalker lives in New York City and is frequently interviewed.

In These Times - Book Review - Nov. 27, 2000

contact Seven Stories Press to buy the book

updated January 13, 2011

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