Reading List

I’m not the only person who writes about sex! Check out what these other people are writing (and what I’m reading) while you wait for my next post.

Internet 

in chronological order, with most recently found/published first. As this list gets longer, I may delete some to keep this page at a reasonable list.

The Importance of Expanding Sex Ed to People with Developmental Disabilities” (February 2016). Bitch Media’s Katherine Marrone interviews Katherine McLaughlin, a sexual health educators who specializes in sex ed for people with developmental disabilities. McLaughlin points out that sex ed is for everyone, regardless of the presence or absence of a physical and mental disability, and that keeping sensitive information from young people has very negative consequences in the long run (higher rates of STIs, higher risk of being taken advantage of sexually, etc.). People with disabilities are even more at risk for these types of things, because their parents are less likely to talk about sex with them, and there are almost no sex ed curricula designed specifically for this group of people.

What Cis People Say to Trans People vs. What We Hear” (Found February 2016). PSA: don’t be transphobic, and don’t use transphobic language.

The V-Card Diaries (Found  January 2016). Started by filmmaker Therese Shechter, this site chronicles “tales of sexual debuts and deferrals.” Three-hundred-forty-one tales, to be exact. Each entry is represented by a dot on the website’s home screen – when you scroll over any dot, it selects a quote from the story that dot represents. If you click on the dot, you can read that person’s full story. Not all of these stories are happy, not all of them are sad. They all show us how differently everyone thinks about sex and virginity.

HOW TO MAKE ME COME (Found August 2015). A really wonderful tumblr in which women-identified folks write/talk about their sex lives. Entries can be long or short, funny or heartbreaking. The creator recently starting posting audio episodes, which is what you’ll see on the first page. If you click back far enough (or just check out the archives), you’ll find the written stuff, too.

Oh Joy, Sex Toy (Found September 2014). I write about sex in paragraphs: Erika Moen writes about it in comics. Although technically a sex toy review comic, Moen (with the help of her husband) also covers topics like contraception, pregnancy, abortion, and a whole slew of STIs, as well as consent, advice on how to have a threesome, and philosophical discussions about the ramifications of pornography on one’s professional career. “Oh Joy, Sex Toy” updates on Tuesdays.

White Privilege, Explained in One Simple Comic” (Found September 2014). You might think sex isn’t about race…but it is. Especially when it comes to privilege. Privilege shapes everything that we do, including how we think about sex and our first sexual experiences. White privilege can shape, transform, and dictate what sex is like for us as humans, and it’s an important social force to understand.

Books

Perv ThumbnailCurrent Reading: Perv: The Sexual Deviant in All of Us, by Jesse Bering. Turns out that we’re all perverts. Stay tuned for a post about the best/coolest information I find in this gem!

 

 

Guide to Getting it on ThumbnailGuide to Getting It On, 7th ed. by Paul Joannides (Acquired September 2015…always currently reading). If you only ever buy one sex guide, buy this one. The Guide to Getting It On is arguably the most comprehensive resource on human sexuality on the planet, and definitely one of the wittiest. This book is funny and informative and splits its topics up into really manageable chapters (we’re talking a 900-page book with chapters that are usually around 10 pages long). Downsides: it’s fairly heteronormative and generally not trans-inclusive (although it’s getting better with each edition). Joannides does not use gender-neutral language, which is a bummer. But as far as informational sex manuals go, it’s one of the best, and it has some pretty awesome pictures. If you do get this book, spring for a later edition. The earlier editions are cheaper, but they’re also one-tenth of the length and don’t have nearly as much information.

Sex at Dawn thumbnailSex at Dawn, by Cacilda Jetha and Christopher Ryan (Read June 2015). We live in a society where monogamy is the norm and polyamory is considered somehow deviant or wrong, but Jetha and Ryan argue that humans probably evolved to be polyamorous…until agriculture came along and ruined all our fun. A fairly technical book, but well-written and rarely too boring (although some parts are less-than-exciting). It’s long, and not exactly a fast read, but incredibly informative and it will change the way that you think about your sexuality (or at least make you realize that it’s not wrong to be attracted to other people if you are in a monogamous relationship).

Bonk ThumbnailBonk: The Curious Coupling of Science and Sex, by Mary Roach (First read June 2012). I freaking love this book. It is, quite possibly, my favorite book on sex. Mary Roach is, quite possibly, my favorite non-fiction author. This book is witty and fascinating and I always find something new to be amazed at every time I read it. Like how scientists once killed hamsters to find out if (female) orgasm aided conception. Or that female pigs have their clitorises inside their vaginas. It won’t necessarily teach you how to have an orgasm or how to communicate with your partner…but WOW will it show you how weird sex is on so many different levels.

Multimedia

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver: Abortion Laws” (February 21, 2016). This video is the best because there is a bucket of sloths! Also, abortion laws are the worst. If you ever wondered about the significance of abortion restrictions that a majority of states in the U.S. have passed (and are still passing), but didn’t have the time to read up on them, John Oliver walks you through the basics of these laws in 16 minutes. The big takeaway? Thanks to people who claim they are “protecting women’s health,” abortions are getting harder and harder to obtain…that is, if you’re not a rich person. A lack of abortion clinics in various states (for example, Mississippi has one abortion clinic total) has made is so many people who need or want abortions have to travel hundreds of miles to reach a clinic (and then most likely they’ll need to stay in a hotel for an extended period of time because most states have a 72-hour waiting period between consultation and procedure). Who can afford that? The rich. Who can’t afford to take all that time off work, pay for an abortion and a hotel on the side? Not me. Not a lot of people. So while *ahem* conservative congresspeople make laws that they *think* are stopping abortions, what they’re really doing is further oppressing the poor. Or at least, that’s my analysis. Watch the video and decide for yourself. Or just watch it for the sloths. Because sloths! (And if you feel depressed after absorbing all of this terribly depressing information, the sloths will cheer you up at the end. Because sloths. Is it clear that I love sloths?)

The Truth About Hymens and Sex” (Found January 2016). “College Humor” has been doing a lot of good sex ed stuff lately! And most of the information is accurate (or at least obviously false). And videos are fun.

Circumcision is a Feminist Issue (And Here are 5 Reasons Not to Do It to Your Child)” (Found July 2015). Vlogger Justin Dennis walks through the cons of circumcision. Especially when it comes to consent. Dennis is funny, engaging, and knows how to do her research.

 

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