Communion: The Female Search for Love

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9780066214429: Communion: The Female Search for Love

Renowned visionary and theorist bell hooks began her exploration of the meaning of love in American culture with the critically acclaimed All About Love: New Visions. She continued her national dialogue with the bestselling Salvation: Black People and Love. Now hooks culminates her triumphant trilogy of love with Communion: The Female Search for Love.

Intimate, revealing, provocative, Communion challenges every female to courageously claim the search for love as the heroic journey we must all chose to be truly free. In Communion, hooks, one of our most revered and acute social critics, answers all our questions about the place of love in a woman's life. In her trademark commanding and lucid language, hooks explores the ways ideas about women and love were changed by feminist movement, by our full participation in the workforce, and by the culture of self-help. Her penetrating words silence our fears about becoming women who love too much, yet they also challenge us. Her words stir us to devote as much of ourselves to love, to loving our partners, our bodies, our pasts, our parents, as we do our careers and our independence.

In chapters as personal and prescriptive as bell is passionate and provoking, Communion guides us toward the path that leads to true fulfillment. This work exposes our fears, hopes, and longing, all the while addressing the powerful insight that women who cannot love can never really grow up. In Communion, hooks celebrates the experiences of women over thirty, shares collective wisdom, and bestows on us the lessons learned as we practice the art of loving. Communion is the heart-to-heart talk every woman needs to have. And this conversation guides us--mothers, daughters, friends, and lovers -- on one of our most life-affirming journeys.

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About the Author:

Bell Hooks is a cultural critic, feminist theorist, and writer. Celebrated as one of our nation's leading public intellectual by The Atlantic Monthly, as well as one of Utne Reader's "100 Visionaries Who Could Change Your Life," she is a charismatic speaker who divides her time among teaching, writing, and lecturing around the world. Previously a professor in the English departments at Yale University and Oberlin College, hooks is the author of more than 17 books, including All About Love: New Visions; RememberedRapture: The Writer at Work; Wounds of Passion: A Writing Life; Bone Black: Memories of Girlhood; Killing Rage: Ending Racism; Art on My Mind: Visual Politics; and Breaking Bread: Insurgent Black Intellectual Life. She lives in New York City.

From Publishers Weekly:

While feminism may have changed boardrooms, it didn't make much headway in bedrooms, argues philosopher/writer hooks. Women have made progress in regard to social empowerment, but the quest for emotional density for love has remained elusive. Why are men still so emotionally unsatisfying? Because, hooks argues, "patriarchal thinking has socialized males to believe that their manhood is affirmed when they are emotionally withholding." Patriarchy valorizes power and assigns it to men, and devalues nurturing and labels it feminine. Thus, young postfeminist women find themselves with "nothing to show" from their newly won equality but a double shift of work: first the paid job, then the physical and emotional homework of their relationship with their man. Still, as feminists of hooks's generation reach midlife, they may find it easier to rethink these terms of engagement, to risk changing things. The first step, she says, is self-love accepting one's body and soul just the way it is. Without such acceptance, women cannot escape the domination-submission dynamic. Even then, in this patriarchal universe finding love with another person may require some creativity. Hooks explores romantic friendships, lesbian loves and "circles of love" (which allow for committed bonds that extend beyond one partnership). A life with no coupling, but "a more authentic relationship between self and world," may also be satisfying. Twenty-something women who've embraced the highly problematic "bitch persona" Elizabeth Wurtzel has written of may sneer at hooks's affirming style, but older women, particularly those raising girls themselves, will find much to ponder here. (Feb. 1)Forecast: This should satisfy those looking for an alternative Valentine's Day gift for the leftist/feminist woman in their life.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.

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