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This book explores women’s experiences of shopping in ‘sex shops’ and using sexual commodities in their everyday lives. Drawing on interviews and accompanied shopping trips, it shows how women take up these ‘technologies’ of the self in order to work upon and understand themselves as confident and active sexual agents in postfeminist neoliberal cultures.
Exploring questions about how certain kinds of sexual practices and identities are normalised and regulated for women through consumer culture, and of how sexual consumer culture constructs, reproduces and regulates ideas around the ‘right’ and ‘wrong’ orientations towards sex and sexuality, the author draws the thought of Foucault and de Certau to contend that the ability to embody and perform the appropriate forms of sexual consumption is deeply entangled with ideas around a ‘healthy’ and suitable attitude towards being sexual more broadly.
A rich analysis on the levels of ‘spaces’, ‘bodies’ and ‘objects’ of women’s use of discursive, embodied and everyday strategies in ‘making do’ with the kinds of femininity and female sexuality that sex shop culture represents, Consumer Sexualities: Women and Sex Shopping will appeal to scholars of sociology, cultural studies and gender studies with interests in gender, sexuality and consumption.