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The Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures Paperback – March 10, 2009


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The Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures + Opening Up: A Guide to Creating and Sustaining Open Relationships + Sex at Dawn: How We Mate, Why We Stray, and What It Means for Modern Relationships
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 296 pages
  • Publisher: Celestial Arts; 2nd edition (March 10, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1587613379
  • ISBN-13: 978-1587613371
  • Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.6 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (178 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This book is the definitive guide to having your marriage and eating other people too. The Ethical Slut made me the ethical slut I am today, and I am so proud!”--Margaret Cho, comedian and author of I’m the One That I Want

“The Ethical Slut is one of the most useful relationship books you could ever read, no matter what your lifestyle choices. It‚’s chock-full of great information about communication, jealousy, asking for what you want, and maintaining a relationship with integrity. An absolute masterpiece and a must-read!”--Annie Sprinkle, PhD, sexologist and author of Dr. Sprinkle's Spectacular Sex

“Many people wish for and dream of a wider world sexually and live out their lives unable to find the courage to explore. This book is a thoughtful, practical, and loving look at that exploration.”--David Crosby, musician and author of Since Then

“The Ethical Slut, in this new and expanded edition, is the definitive guide for creating and sustaining all conscious relationships‚Äîpolyamorous, open, alternative, and monogamous. Don’t enter into another relationship without it!”--Barbara Carrellas, author of Urban Tantra

“Dossie and Janet’s blend of good humor and forthright honesty makes for some of the best writing I have found on sexually complicated relationships and blended family options. Engaging, disarming, forthright‚ this is the book for those of us still brave enough to make the ethically complex choices.” --Dorothy Allison, author of Bastard Out of Carolina

“A useful guidebook for radical relationship travelers . . . experienced counsel to those on the polysexual frontier.” --Ryam Nearing, Loving More magazine

“A post-graduate course in ethical relationships of every stripe. The authors pull no punches and are totally outrageous. . . . You’ll never be bored.” --Stan Dale, DHS, founder of the Human Awareness Institute

“Frank, funny, and full of practical advice . . . life-saving validation, empathy, and plenty of insider tips from the experienced big sisters you probably weren’t fortunate enough to have.” --Deborah Anapol, PhD, author of Polyamory: The New Love without Limits

From the Publisher

* The essential guide for singles and couples who want to explore polyamory in ways that are ethically and emotionally sustainable.
* Revised and updated throughout, with new strategies for single sluts, advice for opening an existing relationship or marriage, and exercises for thinking about and discussing open relationships.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

I love the honesty.
Kathy R Elwell
Ok, I was already poly before I read the book, but this book solidified my beliefs and helped me understand more about open relationships.
stynen
A very interesting read.
C. Shearer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

167 of 187 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Meli on November 24, 2013
Format: Paperback
I write this review as someone who is extremely sympathetic to polyamory, has explored it in the past, and has made the choice that it is not something that would be ultimately as satisfying for me as monogamy.

I am delighted with certain aspects of the book that reframe abundant sexual expression in positive ways, promote honest, authentic, and safe relationships, and encourage people to explore with openness what is true for them. I also enjoy the "workbook" like nature of many of the inquiries, allowing many people to really make these ideas concrete in their own lives.

However, even upon re-reading this 2nd edition, I fundamentally disagree with too many of the underlying premises and the underlying energy of defensiveness throughout the book. Foremost is the underlying premise that monogamy isn't anything special, and that you can essential do everything you can do in monogamy with polyamory. The authors suggest quite explicitly in several places that monogamy is simply a more sexually repressed, unenlightened, and outdated version of a more supposedly spiritually mature polyamory. I find their arguments utterly unconvincing, overly simplistic, defensive, and often overstated.

I maintain that monogamy and polyamory are qualitatively different and should not be compared as if they were better or lesser versions of the same thing. They are both beautiful, both unique, and there is something special about both of them. They present qualitatively different challenges that are not the same. Monogamy inviting challenges that can ONLY come from unconditionally committing to be sexually exclusive with one person. Polyamory invites challenges that can ONLY come from unconditionally being open to letting love and sexual exploration flow as they arise.
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182 of 206 people found the following review helpful By IReadInTrees on April 24, 2009
Format: Paperback
The Ethical Slut is incredible!

I first read The Ethical Slut (first edition) as part of a college course. As an undergrad, I was already well on my way to being a proud slut - I did the usual versions of short-term college dating, hookups, friends-with-benefits, threesomes, and the like, with or without a committed partner at various times. It all felt natural and right, but there were invariably awkward moments of poor negotiation, misunderstood communication, and mis-handled jealousy.
When I read The Ethical Slut, I found an amazing wealth of information and suggestions on how I could make my various relationships work better and more smoothly. I wished I'd had this book all along - it would have saved so much trouble! If only I'd known that an agreement to "see other people" wasn't nearly complete enough! The Ethical Slut lays out all the things to think about in having open relationships of various sorts. I've been called a slut since I was 14, but it was this book that gave me the idea that being a slut could be a good thing - and now I couldn't be happier with my fabulous life as a proud slut.

The Ethical Slut is an entertaining, readable, real-life explanation of all the options in relationships. Whether you want to be single or partnered or grouped, poly or monogamous, or whatever else, this book helps you figure out all the possibilities better. It's THE relationship book for anyone who wants more options than a "leave-it-to-beaver" relationship.

If you're just starting to explore open relationships, or you're even just thinking about it, there's no better place to start than with this book. And if you're already immersed in poly life, it's got the "advanced level" information you need.
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65 of 79 people found the following review helpful By Jenny Gilbert on March 10, 2009
Format: Paperback
I have always loved sex, but growing up in the South, felt a bit guilty about that. Even though I had open-minded parents, the society around me shaped my beliefs more than I often like to admit.

I found this book very helpful as it showed me that I am not the only one to feel as I do about sex and, more importantly, that I'm not a "bad" person for feeling this way.

Whether or not you are interested in having more sex, or justifying the sex you already have, this book will help you to work with the mental issues around that.

Being an "ethical slut" is about much more than sex though-- it's about having the courage to express your feelings and following your desires. It's about expanding yourself to new levels and going way beyond the limits society has set for you.

Of course, that is my definition. One of the great things about this book is that it allows you to define "ethical slut" for yourself. The authors throw it all out there. Bisexuality, multiple partners are once, marriage, leather, bondage, and more is included here. You pick what works for you. You're also free to change that at any time.

Good book. Very progressive and certainly not for everybody. The book encourages you to follow your own road though, so if you read it, do so knowing that it's perfectly ok for you to disagree.

A related book, which I also love, and I think you will also, is Just Fk Me! - What Women Want Men to Know About Taking Control in the Bedroom. Something else to make you question everything and come up with your own thoughts.
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