CAMILLE PAGLIA, American feminist writer, born; an American social critic, author and teacher. Her book, Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson , published in 1990, became a bestseller. She is a professor of humanities and media studies at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, PA.
She has been variously called the “feminist that other feminists love to hate,” a “post-feminist feminist,” “one of the world’s top 100 intellectuals” (which, along with $2.50 will, I believe, get you a ride on the NY subway system….if it’s running) by the UK’s Prospect Magazine, and “a feminist bisexual egomaniac.” Paglia describes herself as a feminist and as a Democrat who voted for Bill Clinton and Ralph Nader, and even campaigned for John F. Kennedy as an adolescent. Her vocal skepticism of global warming, however, indicates her willingness to break with liberal orthodoxies.
Her views on the legalization of recreational drugs and prostitution, and on the relaxation of sexual consent laws, are more libertarian. (Won’t someone save us from Ayn Rand and her children?)
She is a strong critic of much of the feminism that began with Betty Friedan’s 1962 The Feminine Mystique and compared feminists — whom she considered to be victim-centered — to the Unification Church. At the same time Paglia’s embrace of fetishism, pornography, sex work and most prominently, male homosexuality, effectively puts her at odds with the “family values” of American social conservatives.