Female Fetishism

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The aura of passivity that has for centuries surrounded female sexuality in popular culture, psychology, and literature has, in recent years, dissipated. And yet fetishism, one of the most intriguing and mysterious forms of sexual expression, is still cast as an almost exclusively male domain. Most psychoanalytic thought, for instance, excludes the very possibility of female fetishism.

The first book on the subject, Female Fetishism engagingly documents women's involvement in this form of sexuality. Lorraine Gamman and Merja Makinen describe a wide array of female fetishisms, from the obsessional behavior of pop fans (and pop performers such as Madonna) to fetishism in advertising to women's involvement in the world of dress clubs and fetish magazines. The authors provide provocative evidence of food fetishism among women, arguing that many eating disorders are best understood from this perspective.
A latter portion of the book includes a discussion of how feminists have treated the political and cultural significance of female fetishism.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"An original, liberating interpretation . . . should become a standard of cultural and psychoanalytical studies."

-The Guardian

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780814730720
  • Publisher: New York University Press
  • Publication date: 1/1/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.48 (h) x 0.61 (d)

Meet the Author

Anthony P. Griffin was General Counsel for the NAACP and was removed in 1993 for his representation in a first amendment case of a Grand Dragon of the Texas Knights of the Ku Klux Klan.

Donald E. Lively is a Professor of Law at the University of Toledo.

Robert C. Post is a Professor of Law at the University of California, Berkeley.

Lorraine Gamman lectures in Cultural Studies and Product Design at Central St. Martin's College of Art and Design and is a visiting tutor at Goldsmith's College, London. She is coeditor of The Female Gaze: Women as Viewers of Popular Culture.

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Table of Contents

Introduction 1
1 Three Types of Fetishism: a Question of Definition 14
2 Perverse Strategies: a Look at Women 51
3 Women and Sexual Fetishism 95
4 Bulimia: the Fourth Fetishism? 122
5 Food Fetishism: the Cultural Arguments 145
6 Female Fetishism Conflated: Representations of 'Fetishism' 171
7 Fetishism - the Postmodern Condition? 213
Bibliography 223
Index 233
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