Reviews of Why Women Have Better Sex Under Socialism: And Other Arguments for Economic Independence

A passionate but reasoned feminist socialist manifesto for the 21st century… Ghodsee’s treatise will be of interest to women becoming disillusioned with the capitalism under which they were raised.
— Publishers Weekly
A pointed examination of the Soviet experiment… Using her years living in Bulgaria as fodder for the narrative, along with decades of research, she makes the case that there are lessons capitalist countries can and should learn from socialism… At the same time, the author isn’t blind to the failures of socialist regimes… While the title is the literary version of click-bait, the book is chock-full of hard-hitting real talk.
— Kirkus
Reliant on the commodification of everything, capitalism’s triumph is a calamity for most women. Their hard slog as mothers and careers can never be remunerated within market societies which, by design, are compelled to commodify their sexuality, robbing them in the process of their autonomy, even of the opportunity to enjoy sex for-themselves. Without romanticizing formerly communist regimes, Ghodsee’s new book retrieves brilliantly the plight of hundreds of millions of women in those countries as they were being stripped of state support and thrust into brutal, unfettered markets. Employing personal anecdotes, forays into the history of the women’s movement and an incisive mind, Ghodsee is enabling us to overcome the unnecessary tension between identity and class politics on the road towards the inclusive, progressive movement for societal change we so desperately need.
— Yanis Varoufakis, author of Adults in the Room
A quietly damning indictment of the Lean In approach to women’s empowerment through the corporate boardroom. Ghodsee makes a compelling case for a more expansive understanding of feminism, where remaking the economy is central. A necessary reminder that today’s socialism should be as much about pleasure as it is about power and production
— Kate Aronoff, coeditor of Democratic Socialism, American Style
This book is funny, angry, and urgent-it’s going to make readers think very differently about how they work, and how they live. Ghodsee is going to start a revolution. I’m already making a placard.
— Daisy Buchanan, author of How To Be a Grown-Up
Capitalism has fundamentally shaped and warped the ways we relate to each other, sexually and otherwise…leading us to view intimacy and love as things that only exist in finite quantities, and that are only worth investing in worthy relationships. Ghodsee’s book offers an alternative to this model, looking back at the state-socialist regimes in the 20th century, under which the state liberalized divorce laws, legalized abortion, invested in collective laundries and nurseries, and enabled women to attain more economic freedom—and in turn, better sex.
— The Cut
It’s freaking GOOD AS HELL!
— Season of the Bitch
A provocative and deftly argued text.
— Vice Broadly
A straightforward account of how capitalism harms women—including, yes, in our intimate lives… It made me want to do much more than vote.
— Jewish Currents
Ghodsee’s focus…on sex and sexual relations emerges elegantly from the argument she has developed: that a feminist politics is central to socialism because it cannot avoid its foundation in economic principles. So long as women are economically dependent on men, there can be no equality; without such equality, she argues, heterosexual relations will suffer and so will the experience of sex itself.
— In These Times
There are many reasons to revisit socialist policies in a time of widening inequality, but a feminist perspective offers some of the most powerful incentives.
— The Guardian
Fascinating… The book isn’t nearly as silly as the title suggests.
— The Times of London