The launch of the contraceptive pill in the 1960’s was a true revolution in every sense of the word. It allowed women to finally take back control of their bodies and their sexuality. Thanks to this new pill, women no longer had to fear getting pregnant and possibly having to undergo the emotional and physical pain of an abortion. For women all over the world, this was liberation, and this very concept of freedom is what the author takes up in the book. From the moment the pill became available, a message was conveyed to women that their freedom comes first, that they were free to have sex as and when they pleased, to show their body however they liked, and could enjoy a much broader sense of physical and sexual freedom.
It seemed that they had finally been given permission to experience their sexuality without denying themselves any experiences and without any restrictions, which, of course, is positive. There is however, a downside to this, which cannot be ignored. Women’s sexual freedom has been used by the capitalist system to turn sex into a commodity. This new culture, in which women are completely free, has brought about a new mindset, that fits in perfectly with our disposable consumer society, in which everything is to be used, and then discarded. Sexuality is no longer a value, but a commodity, to be used, quick and easy, and without giving it too much thought.
Many women have successfully adopted this new philosophy, while others have struggled with it, however, and have felt obliged to adopt a superficial attitude towards sex that really did not fit with their beliefs. In the book, we learn about a girl who agreed to a sexual relationship because she felt pressured into thinking that sex should be taken lightly, like any other aspect of our lives. Although she herself felt differently, she felt pressure from society not to take sex so seriously. So the author poses the question: although it represents an important step in the development of modern society, are we sure that this sexual liberation really has freed everyone?