Non Fiction

Reviews of Strip: The Making of a Feminist

How Catlyn delivers this book is brilliant. Her voice is distinctive and makes this book, even in uncomfortable situations, such an easy and incredible read from the start.. How she talks about the people she works with and meets, challenges what you anticipate might be the situation and challenges the stereotypes that are perpetuated by media on who these women are and the men who visit them. The frankness of the writing and the delivery of this book is incredible and it makes me want to read so much more of her work, Ladd’s way with words shines in this short but honest book. ~ Victoria Casswell, Books, Lots Of Books, Plenty Of Books, Books Everywhere!

Strip: The Making of a Feminist provides a detailed account of Catlyn Ladd’s experience stripping over the course of five years. While like other autoethnographic accounts of the strip club industry, Ladd’s contribution to the genre involves her incorporation of feminist critique within a sex positive framework. Ladd skillfully explores the nuances of female sexual empowerment while evaluating her own experience as “empowered” within a racist, capitalist, hetero-patriarchal work environment and culture. She reveals that although stripping can empower some women, this empowerment exists within the context of broader social systems that grant certain women the privilege of empowerment. In other words, some women choose to strip out of desire, while others choose to strip out of need, or perhaps do not have a choice. These realizations help Ladd synthesize her experience into a tale of growth, whereby the reader begins with a basic introduction to the industry in Section I and is lead through Ladd’s growing feminist consciousness in the following sections. It is within these sections we see Ladd explore the contradictions of female sexual empowerment, but it is this exploration that reminds the reader of sex positivity’s significance for women in the United States. ~ Katherine Martinez, Ph.D., Author of Somebody's Fetish: Self-objectification and body satisfaction among consensual sadomasochists, Journal of Sex Res

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Catlyn Keenan