Thursday, February 05, 2009

Rebecca Traister has written a cool article for Salon--The Great Girl Gross Out, with the subtitle "Female writers are getting more graphic than ever about the messy realities of their bodies. Is it too much information or enlightened honesty?" I know I fall into the latter camp, myself--I love the fact that women are being more honest about living inside our female bodies (it's why I wrote Fruitflesh, after all!) When we take what is normally hidden and unspoken and bring it to light, we remove the shame that surrounds it. We can begin to share our experiences more fully and openly. We can begin to realize we're not alone. The body is how we live in the world--by telling its stories, we honor the whole of our existence.

I am grateful that more and more women are feeling free to write about periods and sex and other bodily experiences that had been shrouded in secrecy for so long--these things are part of us and should not be excluded from our storytelling. I am especially grateful for women writers such as Anne Sexton and Sharon Olds who paved the way for women to write freely and boldly about our bodies today (Sharon Olds was instrumental for me, personally--her work truly gave me permission to be more honest in my own writing).

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter if you have a chance to read the article!


Kit Stolz said...

Well, I'm not a girl, but have lived with a few...interesting piece.

Yes, the body can be something of a gross-out, but less so if the bodily fluids are shared...I recall a time in my youth when I used to like it when my gf got her period, because it seemed to make sex better yet...sometimes you wonder if this s something evolved figured out for us...

gayle said...

Thanks, Kit--it's nice to have a guy's perspective on this. :)