What Do Women Want?: Bread, Roses, Sex, Power

Front Cover
HarperCollins Publishers, 1998 - Social Science - 202 pages
1 Review
"What do women want?" is a book of inspiration, humor, and provocation-- an intimate conversation between the reader and Erica Jong. In these personal statements Jong addresses many of the questions that concern women and men today: Are women better off today than they were twenty-five years ago? What was Princess Diana's importance to women? Has Hillary Clinton prepared us for a woman president? Why do powerful women evoke ambivalence? Why do mothers continue to be blamed for working outside the home? How does the mother-daughter dialectic influence cycles of feminism and backlash? What is the relationship of pornography to the creative spirit? Who is the perfect man? What constitutes sex appeal?

With her characteristic wit and her refreshing refusal to bow down before political correctness, Erica Jong tackles these and other issues. She also celebrates Nabokov's "Lolita" and relates it to the history of censorship; analyzes Anaos Nin's importance to contemporary writers; captures the seductive charm of Italy, her second home; and honors the necessity for poetry in our lives. "What Do Women Want?" is at once an informal memoir and a book of inspiration for all women and the men in their lives.

"What Do Women Want?" is both funny and serious, full of Jong's delight in language and her passion for ideas. It grapples with the writers she loves and the hypocrisy she hates, and reveals her own original, quirky take on the world we live in.

From inside the book

What people are saying - Write a review

WHAT DO WOMEN WANT?: Bread, Roses, Sex, Power

User Review  - Jane Doe - Kirkus

A mixed bag of essays, some new, some warmed over, that doesn't answer the question, but offers some occasionally amusing, even provocative food for thought. Jong (Inventing Memory, 1997, etc ... Read full review

What do women want?: bread, roses, sex, power

User Review  - Not Available - Book Verdict

Jong (Inventing Memory, LJ 6/1/97) should stick to fiction writing. Her latest effort, essays on women, contemporary culture, and travel, is embarrassingly unsophisticated, full of the kind of gossip ... Read full review


chapter one My Mother My Daughter and Me
The Vicissitudes
chapter three Monster Mommies

4 other sections not shown

Other editions - View all

Common terms and phrases

About the author (1998)

Erica Jong was born on March 26, 1942. She received a B.A. from Barnard College and a M.A. in 18th Century English Literature from Columbia University. She also attended Columbia University's graduate writing program where she studied poetry. She has written numerous volumes of poetry, novels, and non-fiction works including Fruits and Vegetables, Fear of Flying, How to Save Your Own Life, Parachutes and Kisses, Sappho's Leap, Seducing the Demon: Writing for My Life, and It Was Eight Years Ago Today (But It Seems Like Eighty). She has received numerous awards including the United Nations Award for Excellence in Literature, Poetry magazine's Bess Hokin Prize, the Deauville Award for Literary Excellence, and the Sigmund Freud Award for Literature.

Bibliographic information