Sarah Chadwick author The Sweetness of Venus - A History of The Clitoris


Manage episode 299120594 series 2901614
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My last guest of Season 2 is the wonderful Sarah Chadwick author of The Sweetness of Venus - A History of the Clitoris.

Challenging today’s definition of female sexuality, The Sweetness of Venus is a provocative, straight-talking and rigorously researched history exposing the denial, misunderstanding and brutality endured by this taboo body part.

Sarah has a teaching background is currently a guest researcher at Chicago’s LOYOLA University, splitting her life between the US and UK. She has been described as “an articulate and compassionate spokeswoman for a new generation of women”

In her own words Sarah “Wanted her book to be pleasurable like good sex. For it to be friendly, funny, compassionate, inclusive of men and a bridge between academic research and knowledge. A book that people would pick up and have pleasure reading.” - I think she achieved it all.

Join us as we discuss:-

  • The historic shame around women’s sexual pleasure
  • The complicated and conflicting history of the clitoris
  • The Victorians - the fear and threat around women having sexual agency
  • 1844 - A breakthrough in Clitoral recognition!
  • The tip of the Clitoral iceberg - do you really know what it looks like and just how big it is?
  • Think you know the meaning of the world ‘frigid’, think again
  • Freud and his part in defining that there is a difference between a vaginal and Clitoral orgasm.
  • Historically Dr’s putting forward the idea that proper sexual function was through penetrative sex only and any other way was a treatable physiological disorder
  • Why we need to broaden the definition of what quantifies as sex to become more inclusive and healthier for everybody
  • Today’s teenagers having more oral and anal sex than ever before in the name of ‘not having sex’
  • The difference in sex education in the UK and the US and why we are still not teaching it right.
  • The narrative that women are wired for reproduction and men are wired for sex
  • Shere Hite’s groundbreaking survey in the 70s about women's sexual pleasure and desire.
  • Sarah’s own frustrating experience with three gynaecologists trying to get her orgasm back post menopause
  • The effect that the dominant narrative that women’s sexual function is purely for reproduction has on Menopausal women stepping into their sexual power
  • How the taboo around reproduction vs pleasure has been so incredibly damaging to women in their 50s and beyond
  • Viagra - *eye roll * men haven't had to fight for their continued sexual function.
  • Bicycle design, train travel, sewing machines and their connection to the female orgasm and masturbation!

Sarah’s book choices

Invisible Women - Caroline Crado Perez

The World’s Wife - Carol Ann Duffy

You can find more of Sarah on Instagram @its.Personalgirls
Find out how you can work with me, my coaching and education, and get your free Menopause Symptom tracker at

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