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Reviews Book

The Rise of Viagra: How the Little Blue Pill Changed Sex in America

BMJ 2005; 330 doi: (Published 17 February 2005) Cite this as: BMJ 2005;330:424
  1. Ray Moynihan, journalist (
  1. Australia

    Is there any aspect of human life more connected to one's sense of self than sex? If we change the way we think about sex, surely we are changing the way we think about ourselves? If we change sex, we change ourselves. This is the simple, frightening argument at the heart of Meika Loe's sociological analysis of sildenafil (Viagra)—frightening not because some dark commercial conspiracy is revealed, but rather, because it seems that some profound and perhaps unwelcome changes may be taking place in our culture and in our bedrooms, imperceptibly.

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    Meika Loe

    New York University Press, $27.95, pp 288 ISBN 0814752004

    Rating: GraphicGraphicGraphic

    A self described activist scholar and assistant professor of sociology and women's studies at Colgate University, New York state, Loe has a strong academic interest in men and sex. She even spent some time as a waitress at a restaurant chain called Bazooms in the 1990s, where the women “wear short shorts and tight tank tops,” on a kind of undercover research mission. Relating a short account of her experiences at Bazooms, she contrasts the restaurant's tawdry reality with its prefabricated fantasy, setting the …

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