Cultural Cliteracy: Exposing the Contexts of Women's Not Coming

26 Pages Posted: 17 Jun 2009

See all articles by Susan Ekberg Stiritz

Susan Ekberg Stiritz

Washington University in St. Louis - George Warren Brown School of Social Work

Date Written: May 21, 2009

Abstract

Cultural cliteracy denotes what an adequately educated person should know about the clitoris. This paper elaborates three ways to enlarge understandings of the clitoris. The first looks at the clitoris as a target of male aggression, a significant and persistent theme in Western history. The second describes an expanded anatomy of the clitoris, one which makes it as large and significant as the penis. The third connects consciousness of clitoral facts with empowerment beyond genital satisfaction and demonstrates that cultural cliteracy can improve readings of women's texts. To conclude, cultural cliteracy is shown to fuel growth, creativity, and individuation and to help women find and express personal power. This claim implies that integrating better understandings of and attitudes towards the clitoris into other academic and professional discourses could help women come into their own.

Keywords: clitoris, sexual pleasure, women, marriage, gender equality, sex education, orgasm, sex toys, Women's Studies, Patriarchy, Psychoanalysis, Cultural unconscious, Women's empowerment, Critical pedagogy

Suggested Citation

Stiritz, Susan Ekberg, Cultural Cliteracy: Exposing the Contexts of Women's Not Coming (May 21, 2009). Berkeley Journal of Gender, Law & Justice, Vol. 23, 2008; Washington U. School of Law Working Paper No. 09-05-01. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1408185

Susan Ekberg Stiritz (Contact Author)

Washington University in St. Louis - George Warren Brown School of Social Work ( email )

St. Louis, MO 63130
United States
314 422 0944 (Phone)

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