I bought this book because I am interested in psychology and I really found it interesting. I love reading books which are about anything not commonly written about. This book isn't afraid to really be honest and is very shocking in places (many places actually). Whatever the reason you may be interested in purchasing this book, it makes for an intriguing read!
I bought this book and read it within a few days. A very interesting book containing many open and facinating female sexual fantasies. It also reminds the reader how times have changed for the better regarding attitudes and sexual openess for women since the 1970's, when the stories were written. There are many similar themes between the fantasies and the author categorises these within the book. Certainly a recommended read!
reading this, I find the narrative by Nancy really interesting as are many of the thoughts that women have during moments of passion and other times of day. I recognise myself in some of them! It is obvious that this was written a while ago and it would be interesting to know if and how much fantasy has changed since this was written. I would imagine the use of technology means these thoughts are more often shared, so as with many things in life have become more and more extreme to get the thrill from them. I am sure somebody out there is looking in to this.
I read this book because it was recommended among other books about female psychology. I don't think anyone needs an excuse to read it however, because it was (and still is) a very important book insofar as it not only demonstrated the existence of female sexual fantasies but also showing their prevalence and variety.
The book is laid out simply, each section containing an abundance of fantasies from different women accompanied by Nancy Friday's analysis of particular parts of the concept of fantasy she wants to examine. Friday notices all fantasy rely on certain archetypes, but Friday also claims that fantasy is common to all women, whether they are sexually satisfied or not. In this way Friday rules out the simplistic explanation of frustration as a reason for fantasy. Friday instead offers a feminist or female liberation viewpoint, as fantasy as a desire for completeness, not necessarily in sex but as a "psychic need for a more complete exploration of everything that was kept from them as girls" (p. 58). This almost psychoanalytic interpretation of fantasy as originating from childhood exclusion from adventure can be disputed, along with the fact that Friday's particular requests for women who already have fantasies may affect the universality of the conclusion she draws. These may be issues to be addressed, but I still think that My Secret Garden is a pioneering work in the field of female psychology.
A very liberating book to read. Lots of fantasies that range from exciting to just plain odd, but you know what? If that's what keeps the fantasies' owners engaged with sex, and provides satisfaction, then it's all good.
It's more a compilation with a bit of a sex therapist's insights in-between, so I'd say the main benefit of reading this is finding out what goes on in other womens' heads. Not rigorous from a theoretical perspective, but certainly worth a read! I bought this as a companion book to Men In Love but have not read that one yet.