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When it came to understanding love, a teenage Jillian Keenan had nothing to guide her - until a production of The Tempest sent Shakespeare's language flowing through her blood for the first time. In Sex with Shakespeare, she tells the story of how the Bard's plays helped her embrace her unusual sexual identity and find a love story of her own.
Four hundred years after Shakespeare's death, Keenan's smart and passionate memoir brings new life to his work. With 14 of his plays as a springboard, she explores the many facets of love and sexuality - from desire and communication to fetish and fantasy. In A Midsummer Night's Dream, Keenan unmasks Helena as a sexual masochist - like Jillian herself. In Macbeth, she examines criminalized sexual identities and the dark side of "privacy". The Taming of the Shrew goes inside the secret world of bondage, domination, and sadomasochism while King Lear exposes the ill-fated king as a possible sexual predator. Moving through the canon, Keenan makes it abundantly clear that literature is a conversation. In Sex with Shakespeare, words are love.
As Keenan wanders the world in search of connection, from desert dictatorships to urban islands to disputed territories, Shakespeare goes with her - and provokes complex, surprising, and wildly important conversations about sexuality, consent, and the secrets that simmer beneath our surfaces.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By becky on 05-30-18
Jillian’s book felt more like an answered prayer. She found a way to beautifully and honestly capture what it’s like to have a spanking kink.
Creative way she tied Shakespeare into it made for a mesmerizing read. She was able to put words to feelings that I’ve never been able to accurately verbalize. I will forever be grateful that I read this book.
By Amazon Customer on 01-21-17
Jillian Keenan not only takes a unique take on Shakespeare, but she does something truly innovative in this book. She seamlessly merges Shakespearean analysis with her autobiography and journalistic reporting. The experiment could've gone way off track, but Keenan beautifully melds the three elements. Add in her somewhat neurotic encounters woth Shakespeare's characters, Sex with Shakespeare will make you think, learn, laugh, cry and empathize with those hiding an important part of their lives.