LOVER: Confessions of a One-Night Stand by Lawrence Edwards

LOVER: Confessions of a One-Night Stand

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A muddlesome, vivid topology of some illusions about the nature of sexual choice. Larry Edwards, a veteran sexual exploiter and exploitee, zigzags retrospectively through his own career: five years of constant, compulsive unfaithfulness to a deeply loved wife, followed after the divorce by the shock of meeting women on something closer to their own terms--being forced for the first time to ""stop to think about why any one of them might want me."" Only after the end of his marriage (and the elaborate structures of secrecy which had inwardly sustained and distorted him) did he wake up to find himself playing the role he had expected of all those sexual non-partners--""the one to be approached, to be seduced."" Larry did eventually grasp that straight, ordinary, healthy women could and did use men as sexual objects. Whether they should is another matter. In his admittedly partial view, women often fail to use the sexual-object code as fairly and consistently as men, because they remain so dreadfully vulnerable, unable to preserve their serf-image in the face of male rejection (men, he claims, are schooled to cope with female rejection on a more practical basis). A maddening book, full of haphazard generalizations and overweening metaphors, and written with a sloppy bravura that one alternately applauds and deplores. Yet through all its posturings and parryings emerges the sense of unexploitative human kinship that makes self-discovery something more than self-indulgence.

Pub Date: May 1st, 1976
Publisher: Farrar, Straus & Giroux