Jaclyn FriedmanJaclyn Friedman

By JaclynF

Our Bodies, Ourselves 40th Anniversary Symposium

I’m beyond honored to be hosting Our Bodies, Our Future: Advancing Health and Human Rights for Women and Girls, a daylong symposium marking the 40th anniversary of Our Bodies, Ourselves. This daylong event will bring together women from 12 countries (Armenia, Bulgaria, India, Israel, Japan, Nepal, Nigeria, Puerto Rico, Senegal, Serbia, Tanzania and Turkey) who will share their extraordinary journeys transforming “Our Bodies, Ourselves” for their own countries.

Together with public policy and global health and human rights experts, OBOS’s global partners will highlight the most pressing issues involving the health and safety of women and girls, and discuss future ways to secure their full civic and political involvement.

Registration is free but required, and seats are going fast! Click here to read more, and to secure your place.

By JaclynF

Los Angeles Book Release

Join me to celebrate the release of What You Really Really Want at Book Soup in LA. Possibly with special guests, check back here for info!

By JaclynF

Seattle Book Release for WYRRW

Come celebrate the release of What You Really Really Want at Elliot Bay Book Company! Scarleteen’s Heather Corinna will interview me live on stage.

By JaclynF

They like it! They really like it!

The reviews have begun to come in!

Honestly, I can’t imagine how to properly express my gratitude for the reaction some of my heroes have been having to advance copies of What You Really Really Want. But as much as I’m humbled by their endorsement of my work, I’m also bursting with pride and can’t wait another day to share them with you. So, without further ado, the very first sneak-peek reviews of What You Really Really Want (which you can, incidentally, pre-order at this link or at your local independent bookstore. Just sayin’.):

Susie Bright:

“In a world full of Pussycat Dolls and virginity pledges, What You Really Really Want carves out a path for real women to have real sex on their own terms. The information and exercises in this book have the power to change your sex life for good.”

Jessica Valenti, founder of Feministing.com and author/editor of four books, including The Purity Myth:

“Don’t have sex before you read this book! With her usual wit and candor, Jaclyn Friedman writes a manual for sex that teaches, engages, surprises and – most importantly – puts the reader in charge. What You Really, Really Want will change the way a generation thinks (and acts!) about sex.”

Anna Holmes, Washington Post columnist and founder of Jezebel.com:

“Jaclyn Friedman’s new guide — detailed, intelligent, and fun as hell to read — is a sorely needed addition to my bookshelf. Think of it as the anti-Cosmopolitan: A 21st century primer on fearlessly discovering and owning your sexuality while staying true to yourself without cutesy gimmicks, absurd tips and patronizing assumptions. It’s not an understatement to say that I wish WHAT YOU REALLY REALLY WANT had been around when I was first coming into adulthood. Actually scratch that: It’s as relevant to me now that I’m in my late 30s as it would have been in my late teens. Everyone can benefit from Jaclyn’s personable, progressive perspective on female sexuality and feminism.”

Tristan Taormino, sex educator and author of 7 books including The Secrets of Great G-Spot Orgasms and Female Ejaculation:

“As a sex educator, I always encourage people to embrace their authentic desires to create an empowered sex life, but Jaclyn takes both the theory and practice of this one necessary step further: she gives specific, useful tools to help girls and women navigate the complex world of sexuality. She busts myths and shreds double standards about female sexuality, exposing the hypocrisy, misogyny, and sex negativity inherent in all the crap we’ve been fed. This book will simultaneously make perfect sense, blow your mind, and crack you wide open—and by the time you turn the final page, you will be changed. It should be required reading for every girl and woman—heck, every person—on the planet. There is more significant, sex-positive, shame-free, life-changing knowledge in a few pages of this book then you’ll find in the entire public school sex education curriculum. Clear, compelling, and courageous!”

Heather Corinna, founder/director of Scarleteen and author of S.E.X.: The All-You-Need-To-Know Progressive Sexuality Guide to Get You Through High School and College:

“If you’re like many women, you probably came into your sex like with a sense of what women should or shouldn’t want, but with little sense of what you, the one, unique woman you are, actually did want and all of what you could want. If you’re like many women, you’ve gone through your sex life trying to walk a shaky tightrope of everyone else’s shoulds and shouldn’ts, rather than enjoying the freedom and comfort that only shoulds or shouldn’ts you create and choose for yourself can provide. If you’re like many women, when someone asks what you do really, really want for yourself in a sexual life, the answers don’t easily fly off your tongue. Instead, you may struggle to find them at all or to voice them for fear they’re not the right answers, even if you’re very sure they’re right for you.

In a much better world, no one would have those experiences. Instead, the picture of your sexuality and sex life would start as a colossal, blank canvas where only you painted the picture, where only you chose the scale, proportions, colors and textures and applied — or did not — rules or limits. And the world that painting of your sexuality existed in would be a world without any art critics.

The bad news is we don’t live in that world.

The good news is that what Jaclyn Friedman has provided you with this book is an powerful, creative, truly useful and holistic panacea to the world many women have lived in.

I believe this book and all your process of utilizing all it has to offer can help heal the impact so much negative, soul-sapping messaging can have on you, can renew and recalibrate the way you see the limitless, first-person possibilities of yourself and your sex life and can help you experience and provide that much, much better world for yourself and for everything your sexuality can be. Yep, even though you still have to live in this world.”

Lyn Mikel Brown, Ed.D., Co-founder of SPARK and Professor of Education and Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies, Colby College

“Jaclyn Friedman is my new hero. If I hadn’t read it for myself, I wouldn’t believe a self-help book could cut through so much structural sexism and cultural subterfuge to reach a place of genuine insight and personal truth. Friedman is this generation’s version of Dr. Ruth—young, sassy, direct, and so very wise. As someone who teaches undergraduates and witnesses the gendered nature of sexual shame, blame, and fear, what I really really want is to hand this book out free to all my women students. I’ll settle for dog-eared copies in every college and university Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Resource Center.”

Lena Chen (of The Ch!cktionary and formerly of Sex and the Ivy):

“For every girl (and woman!) who’s ever felt condescended to or misrepresented by sex and dating manuals, What You Really, Really Want is exactly the kind of book for which you’ve been waiting. Choosing nuance over one-size-fits-all dating rules, Jaclyn Friedman treats her readers as equals in the quest for sexual empowerment, helping them sort through confusing expectations and desires without judgment or paternalism. Interweaving advice with personal anecdote, Friedman challenges readers to rethink how they make sense of their bodies, sexuality, and gender. All the while, she offers an honest take on risks like sexual assault, unintended pregnancy, and STIs. By interrogating assumptions about gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, and relationship models, Friedman reveals the diversity of the human sexual experience and the choices available to her readers. Most importantly, she emphasizes fulfillment not through relationships with others, but through one’s relationship with oneself.

Unlike other so-called ‘sexperts,’ Friedman isn’t prescriptive and doesn’t pretend to have easy answers. But then again, why should she? Any reader of this book will realize by its conclusion that the answers lie in their own hands. By teaching girls how to become more attuned with their own bodies and sexualities, Friedman doesn’t just give her readers the tools to say no to social expectations and gender roles, but also teaches them how to say yes to their desires — the very definition of empowerment!”

By JaclynF

Boston Book Launch

Join me for the world-premiere celebration of What You Really Really Want, featuring a reading and performance extravaganza hosted by Harvard Book Store. At the Brattle Theater in Harvard Square, 40 Brattle Street, Cambridge, MA. Featuring performances by Boston Sass Attack and Bitches of Destiny. $5 ticket gets you $5 off the book – contact Harvard Book Store for ticket info.

By JaclynF

I’m beyond honored to be attending the Nobel Women’s Initiative’s conference on Ending Sexual Violence in Conflict, at which over 100 women from around the world – activists, academics, security experts, corporate leaders, and Nobel Peace Laureates Jody Williams, Shirin Ebdai and Mairead Maguire – are coming together next week to forge a new security, and a future free of sexual violence in conflict. You can read a great (though definitely trigger-warning-worthy) overview of the issue and the conference’s approach to it here.

I’m also super excited that I’ve been given permission to liveblog and livetweet some of the proceedings, so that y’all can listen in and I can share some of your comments and questions with this incredible group. I’ll be doing the liveblogging right here (as well as at Feministe), and I’ll be focusing on the three overview panels, which are:

Monday, May 23 @ 11:00AM Eastern

Where are we now and what needs to be done? This panel will review what is being done and what needs to be done to prevent sexual violence in conflict. Reflecting on successes and obstacles, speakers will discuss initiatives/techniques at the international, national and local level to prevent atrocities and protect women.

Moderator: Joanna Kerr – Action Aid International, South Africa
Speakers (TBC):
Joanne Sandler – UN Women (including special message by Margot Wallstrom)
Charlotte Isaksson – Armed Forces, Sweden
Binalakshmi Nepram – Manipur Women Gun Survivor Network, India

Monday, May 23 @ 3:00PM Eastern

This panel aims to give a round up of efforts to prosecute perpetrators at the international and local levels. From the International Criminal Court to grassroots mobile courts, women have spearheaded various alternative and innovative forms of justice. What is needed to strengthen these efforts to ensure greater accountability and prosecution?

Moderator: Susannah Sirkin – Physicians for Human Rights, US
Speakers (TBC):
Anuradha Bhagwati – Service Women’s Action Network, US
Naw K’nway Paw Nimrod – Women’s League of Burma, Thailand
Dr. Emily Adhiambo Rogena – University of Nairobi, Kenya
Andrea Medina Rosas – Red Mesa de Mujeres de Ciudad Juarez, Mexico

Wednesday, May 25, 10:00AM Eastern

What does a survivor-centered strategy look like? How are women activists on the frontline defending and surviving violence and risk? This panel is meant to spark discussions around possibilities and approaches for a comprehensive response for women activists and survivors of sexual violence in conflict. By drawing the links between trauma, justice, health, livelihoods, security and reconciliation, participants reflect on what is needed to support women in finding their voice and reclaiming their lives to forge a new security.

Moderator: Lisa VeneKlasen – Just Associates, USA
Speakers (TBC):
Wangu Kanja – Wangu Kanja Foundation, Kenya
Shereen Essof – Just Associates Southern Africa, South Africa
Safaa Adam – Community Development Association, Sudan
Patricia Ardon – Sinergia N’oj, Guatemala

You can click on the links in the panel names to get a reminder for any of the liveblogs, or just tune back in here at the start of the liveblog. I’ll also be livetweeting as I can from the rest of the conference – you can follow me at @jaclynf.

All of this talk is going to conclude with Thursday’s Day of Action to End Sexual Violence in Conflict — details coming soon on how all of us can get involved. I really hope you’ll join me.

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