The Sex Lives of African Women (Hardback)
  • The Sex Lives of African Women (Hardback)

The Sex Lives of African Women (Hardback)

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Hardback 304 Pages / Published: 22/07/2021
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Waterstones Says

Drawing both from the African continent and the global diaspora, Sekyiamah’s revelatory volume highlights the varied sexual experiences and preferences of African women and the journeys – both mental and physical – that they have undergone to own their sexuality.


'Such a beautiful read, like chatting to a friend over a cuppa. This is the intimate, insightful read that I didn't know I needed. Just brilliant.' Dorothy Koomson

Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah spent decades talking openly and intimately to African women around the world about sex. In this book, she brings together their extraordinary stories, whilst also chronicling her own journey towards sexual freedom.

From finding queer community in Egypt to living a polyamorous life in Senegal to understanding the intersectionality of religion and pleasure in Cameroon, their necessary narratives are individual and illuminating. This stunning collection provides crucial insight into our quest for sexual power and offers all women inspirational examples to live a truly liberated life.

'Touching, joyful, defiant - and honest.' Economist, Books of the Year 2021

'Fascinating.' Bernadine Evaristo

'Honest and moving. A vital treasure.' Bolu Babalola, author of Love in Colour

'Stunning. Essential read! I couldn't put it down.' Nicole Dennis-Benn, bestselling author of Patsy and Here Comes the Sun

'Leaves you feeling deliciously empowered.' Lola Shoneyin, author of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives

'Boundary-breaking, fascinating and deeply affirming.' Otegha Uwagba, author of Little Black Book

Publisher: Little, Brown Book Group
ISBN: 9780349701653
Number of pages: 304
Weight: 535 g
Dimensions: 236 x 156 x 36 mm

If you read Three Women and thought, "Where are all the non-white people?", this book has the answer * Cosmopolitan *
A boundary-breaking, fascinating and deeply affirming set of accounts that emphasises the necessity of allowing African women to tell the stories of their sexuality on their own terms -- Otegha Uwagba
Such a beautiful read, like chatting to a friend over a cuppa. This is the intimate, insightful read that I didn't know I needed. Just brilliant -- Dorothy Koomson
A captivating diasporic work of sensual geographies. Teeming with freedom and agency. Utterly triumphant -- Irenosen Okojie
A beautiful, delicate and sometimes brutal exploration of African Womanhood and sexuality, honest and moving. A vital treasure -- Bolu Babalola
Extraordinarily dynamic...Here is a book like none you will have read before. The women speak openly and invariably for the first time about their experiences of sex and relationships as they seek to claim individual agency, however that expresses itself. They share emotion-filled stories with honesty, addressing everyday personal dramas within the wider context in which self-worth and confidence are affected by racism and patriarchy, with revolution in the streets and revolution in the sheets being two sides of the same coin...With sensitivity, this book has facilitated astonishing breaking of silences -- Margaret Busby * The Guardian *
I just didn't want it to end. Each and every story is unique, powerful ... A global, ambitious collection that hums with the author's love for the subject and her interviewees * Goodreads *
These personal stories reveal a mind-blowing variety of sexualities, sex lives and relationships. Fascinating. -- Bernardine Evaristo
To hear these stories told with such agency shouldn't be a novelty, but the sheer fact of their existence makes this book truly important * Bristol Life *
Fantastically interesting and original -- Francesca Beauman, author of The Literary Almanac
Overflowing with candor, vulnerability, and juiciness, this collection of raw, tender stories that Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah has so lovingly gathered will upend all of your assumptions and stereotypes. These mothers, activists, writers, sex workers, and others share painful truths, evolving glories, and journeys toward love and freedom, in their own words. They are trans, queer, heterosexual, kinky, and say, 'To hell with labels.' Facing down dangers and double standards, they are healing. The Sex Lives of African Women captures the breadth and depth of the Diaspora with the intimacy of looking in a mirror. Marvelous! -- Deesha Philyaw, author of The Secret Lives of Church Ladies
The Sex Lives of African Women is a Pan-African feminist love offering to our ancestors, women living across the Diaspora and future generations to come. Nana Darkoa Sekyiamah delivers this love with honesty, levity and delicious prose. This book satiates my appetite for stories that take the interior lives of Black, African and Afro-descendant women seriously. It is simply unparalleled and right on time. -- Charlene A. Carruthers, author of Unapologetic: A Black, Queer, and Feminist Mandate for Radical Movements
In these emotionally charged and refreshingly honest essays, this collection gives literal shape to women's sexuality and desires. Nothing less than stunning. Essential read! I couldn't put it down. -- Nicole Dennis-Benn, bestselling author of Patsy and Here Comes the Sun
This collection affirms what we've known all along: African women are reclaiming their bodies and taking ownership of their sexual destinies. Every single story leaves you feeling deliciously empowered. -- Lola Shoneyin, author of The Secret Lives of Baba Segi's Wives.
Everyone will come away standing a little taller and breathing a little lighter, buoyed by the affirmation that we are all normal and that the marginal is central. The Sex Lives of African Women is a safe space: it is pure, unadulterated freedom. -- Jane Link, Big Black Books
Beautiful, compelling reads that open up whole new ways of seeing and thinking about the world. They're both full of information, both made me think and both gave me a very welcome insight into other people's experiences and what you can learn from them -- Dorothy Koomson * i Book of the Year *
A Ghanaian feminist and activist relays stories of sexual freedom and relationships. Mostly told pseudonymously, they are touching, joyful, defiant - and honest * The Economist Best Books of 2021 *
This revelatory collection highlights the diverse experiences of sex, sexualities, and relationships of African women and the journeys - both mental and physical - that they have undergone to own their sexuality...a deep insight into the complex tapestry of African women's sexuality and bestows upon all women inspirational examples to living a truly liberated life. * The British Backlist Best of 2021 *
Sekyiamah does an excellent job of reminding us of the complexity of sex and relationships, and how these are affected by an ever-shifting interplay of personality, religion, family dynamics, cultural background, personal finances and life stages. * The TLS *
A collection of powerful, liberating, raw and sometimes heart-breaking real-life stories from women across Africa and the diaspora. Six years in the making, it shatters the taboos that have until now surrounded many of the issues and experiences of African women, who have unfurled the most private area of their lives in its pages. * New African *
No matter how you identify sexually, readers will resonate with the honesty of these stories, and hopefully feel more courageous to live their truth each day. * Bust *
So important and groundbreaking in its treatment of African women's sexualities it deserves to be consumed in every possible medium -- NoViolet Bulawayo

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“One of the most important non-fiction works on sex in recent years!”

I spent a lot of time reading this collection because I just didn't want it to end. Each and every story is unique, powerful, and deserving of individual attention.

Sekyiamah spent six years interviewing... More

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