MEN IN LOVE: Men's Sexual Fantasies: The Triumph of Love Over Rage by Nancy Friday

MEN IN LOVE: Men's Sexual Fantasies: The Triumph of Love Over Rage

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A (you should excuse the expression) mate for My Secret Garden (1973): page after page of men's lusty fantasies, accompanied by Friday's agonized soul-stirrings. Mom, she concludes, is the culprit again. In My Mother/My Self (1977), she held that mothers drive their daughters' sexuality underground; she now zaps us with pretty much the same message vis-à-vis boy children, but with an important difference: males strike back. Whether in masturbatory childhood gangs or in fantasies where they squirt semen over a blonde in a purple negligee, they put up a fight. And the gist of their fantasies--hundreds of which appear here in the men's own words--is that no matter how wild it gets, ""she"" loves it as much as mom once hated it. Even the point of S/M, we are assured, is not pain and humiliation per se, but ""forcing her to admit to transports of sexual joy she has never known before."" Since Friday's Oedipal-descended insights could fit on the head of a pin, one has to assume that the real stars of the show are the fantasies themselves: how Tom/Dick/ Harry would love to see her get it on with a dog/dildo/woman, in living color. As for men's rage--well, shucks, at heart they really want to love women, and will if the ""denied little boy"" is given half a chance. By interpreting each man's fantasy to fit her theses, Friday has merely pigeon-holed them--something that no man's private dreams should be subject to. And if male readers respond at all, it will be to seeing their own fantasies played out time and again by others, not to one woman's attempt at capturing their psyche.

Pub Date: March 31st, 1980
ISBN: 0385333420
Publisher: Delacorte