Sophie Fontanel is a novelist and the senior editor at French Elle. She also chose to be celibate from age 27 to age 39. The English translation of her book about these 12 years, The Art of Sleeping Alone, is due to be published in America on August 13. Fontanel spoke with New York mag’s The Cut about why she chose celibacy and how it affected her life. Keep reading »
Earlier this week, blogger Jessica Grose at Slate wondered if there is “a new backlash against casual sex.” Grose points out that pop culture seems to have toned it down a bit: love-song warbling Taylor Swift is at the top of the charts, Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera are both mommies now, and we hear nary a peep out of Paris Hilton. The problem, Grose argued, is a backlash to the Spears and Agulieras of yore, capturing women in a “shame cycle.”
But over at Salon.com’s Broadsheet blog, Tracy Clark-Flory disagreed, arguing that “sexual regret is not a new phenomenon” and that how women experience casual sex — with embrace or regret — is simply always evolving. There’s room at the pop culture table now, Clark-Flory seems to be saying, for everybody.
As someone who had a decent amount of casual sex in her late teens and first half of her 20s, I’ve thought about this topic a lot: “Is this as fun as it’s supposed to be? Should it be more fun? Should I regret it more?” As a 25-year-old, I am only of maybe the second generation to be loud and proud about having casual sex, and exploring this new-ish territory is full of questions. Keep reading »