Now that I've finished reading Muscio's book, I'm quite happy to tell people about it and freely voice the title. It's not because of any one thing she's said. The book as a whole is a gem once you get past the F-word in every second sentence. It was a distraction in the beginning but not anymore so than the title of the book.
Cunt gives some biology, some current state of affairs, and some history on the weight women have had to bear because they have cunts. Muscio wants women, transgenders etc.. to reclaim the word from men. The word "cunt" is just a metaphor for a bigger picture. Cunts haven't been important to women in the last 200+ years but "cunts are important to men because they generate profits and episodes of ejaculation, and represent the precise point of vulnerability for keeping women divided and thus, conquered," says the bold Muscio.
Muscio wants women to start regaining their power, not as men bashing feminists but as the intelligent and beautiful goddesses we are. Doing this requires some responsibilities of us. Beginning with "seizing a vocabulary for ourselves. Actively teaching ourselves to perceives cunts - ours and others' - in a manner generating understanding and empathy. Taking knowledge out into the community. Learning self-protection. Seeking out and supporting cuntlovin' artists, business, media and role models. Using our power as consumers. Keeping our money in a community of cuntlovin' women." Muscio covers all these things. I found the passages on bleeding and rape to be especially effective, moving and educational. I wish I had read this book as a teenager.
To say some of what Muscio has to say is eyebrow lifting is an understatement. I didn't agree with some of the things she said, especially her idolization of prostitutes into goddesses serving an important role in society. In fact, I found most of what she had to say about whores to be crap except, "whores can be and are sexually assaulted." The profession of prostitution is just one more male dominated form of women abuse. I also refuse to smash my teevee to bits as I'm quite content to be deluded by my one channel.
If you are sensitive to swear words and church bashing, this book probably isn't for you. But if you can get past it you might just learn something about your cunt and women as a whole. We have so much to share but we keep butting our heads against the wall and often times one another. Women often chide that if women ruled the world things would be different insinuating life would better. Is that really the case? How much inter office gossip goes on where you work? Women spend too much time talking about other women and trying to pare them down. Would there be any time or morale left to run the world? There is potential though if women unite together instead of slicing one another into bits. Muscio recommends you get into "the habit of consciously stopping yourself from wishing ill-tidings to a woman." Hear, hear!
Serious stuff? Can be at times but Muscio's little life antidotes lighten things up and give perspective on her choices and thoughts. I like how she doesn't claim to know everything but encourages women to discuss the topics in their own circles.
This is Cunt's second edition. It includes a huge "afterword" of updates on Muscio's previous cunt thoughts not because she feels anything is wrong or out of place but because she says, "I have changed and things have changed." She loses me a bit here when she goes off on politics and Bush (could be because I've been over-Bushed lately). At the end is an incredibly huge section of recommendations for surfing the net. Everything from alternative women's magazines and sex toys to educational resources and all natural pads.
So go pick up your Cunt book today. Read it and then start talking about it to the women in your life. Share your Cunt with others. Encourage discussion. Only through discussion and understanding can we reclaim our Cunts along the other aspects of our lives.
Seal Press, 2002
Purchase "Cunt" from Amazon.com.
Purchase "Cunt" from Amazon.ca.