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The housewife's handbook on selective promiscuity Unknown Binding – 1961


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Amazon.com: 4.5 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It was banned in 1966 by the Supreme Court for obscenity, but it's a rediscovered cultural treasure 9 Feb. 2014
By Amazon Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Rey Anthony was the pseudonym of Maxine Lillian Serett, a remarkable woman and unsung heroine of the women's rights movement. Celebrated in its time, Rey Anthony's classic 1960 sexual freedom book Housewife's Handbook on Selective Promiscuity faded after one tumultuous decade of court controversy, activism for women's rights, high respect from both scholarly and popular critics, and two sequels, and then languished after heart disease permanently sidelined her. It was so frank and detailed in its erotic descriptions of the author's sexual life - beginning as a toddler! - that its original audience of professional counselors was overwhelmed by a New York publisher who bought the rights, edited it, and sold it by mail order as pornography to a huge public. The publisher, Ralph Ginzburg, was convicted of pandering and selling pornographic literature through the mails, lost a Supreme Court appeal, and was imprisoned. His entire inventory of the Housewife's Handbook was seized by federal agents and destroyed. The author was not prosecuted and began a crusade along with founders of the Sexual Freedom League, printing thousands of illicit Handbook copies for sex seminars she held in the San Francisco Bay Area and gaining note in Time magazine, a Hugh Heffner / Playboy television special, and wide praise from literary cognoscenti for its Henry Miller-like stream of consciousness style, which left nothing to the imagination. Her meteoric career was brought to an abrupt halt after a heart attack in 1970 disabled her permanently She died in 1994 at age 70, the copyright on the Handbook expired and her work disappeared.
In 2008, her oldest daughter, Toni Savant, revived the Handbook and restored its text to her mother's original stylish eroticism after Ginsburg's editors destroyed everything but the badly rewritten sex. Savant, ironically, did not agree with her mother's views on sexual liberation, but felt an obligation to edit the book and restore it into the "Definitive Edition" in this Kindle ebook. It is presented in this Kindle-only version just as her mother wrote it, including never-before seen materials her mother intended to include but never got around to doing. To boot, Savant's telling of the story of how the Handbook was written and what happened after it was published is a good read all by itself. The stories in the Editor's Preface and the Epilogue are worth the price of the book alone. Although the erotic text of the Handbook is tame by modern standards, it is more emotionally thrilling than most of today's porn books and still hot enough to excite modern readers.
I had the good fortune of meeting Maxine Serett briefly when I was a teenager and had no idea this brilliant and highly literate "old lady" (she was thirty-something at the time) would one day write a blood-boiling sex book. Our paths crossed only briefly - a different college called - and I didn't know she had written the Handbook until I heard from old friends of her heart attack in 1970. Her daughter Toni has done a superb job of telling the story of Housewife's Handbook on Selective Promiscuity and - bless her - rescuing her mother's book from Ginzburg's gutter smut and restoring the original high-style pulse-racing explicit erotic dynamite that Rey Anthony should become famous for once more. Highly recommended for several reasons.
4.0 out of 5 stars 1950ish porn - va va va voom 2 Jun. 2016
By Ed Berwick - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A classic from more uptight times. This book was banned. A must read of erotic historical content.
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