From Publishers Weekly
The term "feminist stripper" may be ironic, but it's "not an oxymoron," journalist Eaves explains, as she looks back on her own experiences working naked. In 1996, Eaves was in serious debt, dreaming of graduate school but unable to make house payments with her boyfriend, whom she no longer wanted to marry. She could keep working temp jobs or try stripping, which she knew paid more, although she didn't know what to think about it. Had these women "found a sort of freedom" she lacked? Peep show dancing was a revelation; it gave her control, as it was her body that had the power to give men the sexual release they desperately craved. While this sexual power was "exhilarating," it left Eaves somewhat "disappointed," confirming some of her low expectations of men. Given that most of the male (and a few female) lovers of the various strippers in this book found it impossible not to resent their partner's work, relationship strains emerge as one of the few real hazards of this apparently lucrative occupation. True, Eaves draws mostly on the experience of working at Seattle's Lusty Lady, a women-run business with better politics than the average sleazy strip joint, but her point remains: if stripping is a dangerous occupation for women, it's not the customers who're the threat, it's what it does to a woman's head. Eaves manages to avoid moralizing in favor of reportage, and despite the title's ominous promise, keeps the philosophizing to a minimum. BOMC, QPB, Venus and Inbook alternate selections.
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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*Starred Review* In her absorbing book, Eaves goes behind the scenes of the lucrative stripping business to examine the motivations, thoughts, and lives of the women who work in it and the men who patronize it. Much of Eaves' research is firsthand--she worked as a stripper at a Seattle strip joint called the Lusty Lady. While there, she examines both her own attitudes toward stripping and those of the women around her. Contrary to popular belief, not all strippers are "damaged" or man-haters; many are there out of curiosity or because they need the money. And it's good money--many strippers make more in one evening than some people do in an entire week at a more conventional job. The Lusty Lady is a peep show, but Eaves also interviews her coworkers, as well as women who work private parties and give lap dances. Eaves pushes herself, trying, at different times, both a private customer booth (with glass separating stripper and customer) and lap dancing, pushing her own limits. Eaves displays both a level of candid introspection rarely seen and a curiosity that she goes to great lengths to quench, leading to an utterly engrossing, accessible, and informative study. Kristine HuntleyCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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