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The Persistent Desire Paperback – 13 Jul 1992


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Product details

  • Paperback: 502 pages
  • Publisher: Alyson Publications Inc; First Printing edition (13 July 1992)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1555831907
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555831905
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 13.7 x 2.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 714,178 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Synopsis

Surveys a decade of the attempt to reconstruct and understand the meaning and value of butch-femme relations for the contemporary lesbian, drawing on oral history, fiction, poetry, and fantasy.

Customer Reviews

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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 19 Jun. 1998
Format: Paperback
This is the one of the first serious books published on butch/femme within a historical context in the lesbian community. It's a huge collection of historical materials of varying quality, with poems, photographs, essays, etc. This book is absolutely necessary for anyone seeking an understanding of butch/femme as a multi-layered, many-faceted experience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on 5 May 1998
Format: Paperback
Joan Nestle's collection of essays, poems and personal narratives on the butch/femme dynamic is both fascinating to read and a valuable contribution to the scholarly literature on the history of lesbian relationships in this century. Highly recommended!
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 0 reviews
25 of 26 people found the following review helpful
A groundbreaking anthology of butch/femme writings 19 Jun. 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
This is the one of the first serious books published on butch/femme within a historical context in the lesbian community. It's a huge collection of historical materials of varying quality, with poems, photographs, essays, etc. This book is absolutely necessary for anyone seeking an understanding of butch/femme as a multi-layered, many-faceted experience.
38 of 44 people found the following review helpful
Informative, enlightening 25 Feb. 2000
By Lois Eilers - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Though I do not consider myself a lesbian, I have been attracted to a butch woman before and wanted to understand the feeling better. This book helped me understand the dynamic of attraction between butch and fem. It was precisely because she was masculine that I was attracted to her, but because she was a woman there was a sameness I could relate to and identify with. It was safer in a way than a man, because it wasn't quite so opposite. You still have the masculine/feminine polarity, but at the same time a comfortable sameness. It cleared up a lot of my questions and validated a lot of conclusions I had come to regarding the butch/fem dynamic.
24 of 27 people found the following review helpful
Desire that Burns 15 Dec. 2001
By Lesbian Reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
After a recent submersion into what is passing for lesbian erotica these days -- and feeling as if I just wasn't perverse enough to be a "real" lesbian -- I revisited this classic.
After finishing it, and being once again intrigued, informed, aroused and delighted, I realized what it has that so many more recent anthologies lack: it has human contact based on emotion. The women in it are real and their feelings have true context. Instead of cold and sterile sex acts between people portrayed as obsessed with looks and their own image, this anthology overflows with the fluid nature of human sexuality and genuine human warmth.
Some may read for the historical perspective and others may miss the explicit-anything-for-shock-value gender games and power plays that are required it seems in all of the "best of" lesbian erotica out there now. I read it for the emotional impact because when it comes to erotica I need the emotional tie. Given how many lesbians (whether they admit it or not) read lesbian romance novels, I don't think I'm alone.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
Could not be happier to have this book 28 May 2007
By E. B. MULLIGAN - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Classic book that is strangely out of print. I had no idea how Huge the volume of essays, stories, pictures and poems this book contains.

So many fantastic selections: from Lee Lynch's short story `Jacky and the Femme' followed by her poem `Stone Butch', to the concluding work from Joan Nestle `Our Gift of Touch'.

A partial list of the many contributors -

Dorothy Allison

Pat Califia

Barbara Smith

Arlene Stein

Jewelle L. Gomez

Christine Cassidy

Amber Hollibaugh

Cherrie Moraga

Donna Allegra

Rita Laporte

Carolyn Gammon

Ina Rimpau

Merril Mushroom

Audre Lorde

Elly Bulkin

Leslie Feinberg

Judy Lederer

Lisa E. Davis

Radclyffe Hall

William Cullen Bryant

Do not skip the excellent introduction by Joan Nestle with the touching postscript.

This is a keeper from beginning to end!
11 of 13 people found the following review helpful
A fascinating compendium of voices on the Butch/Femme dance. 5 May 1998
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
Joan Nestle's collection of essays, poems and personal narratives on the butch/femme dynamic is both fascinating to read and a valuable contribution to the scholarly literature on the history of lesbian relationships in this century. Highly recommended!
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