Profit and Pleasure: Sexual Identities in Late Capitalism (Paperback) book cover

Profit and Pleasure

Sexual Identities in Late Capitalism

By Rosemary Hennessy

© 2001 – Routledge

288 pages

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Paperback: 9780415924269
pub: 2000-07-24
Hardback: 9780415924252
pub: 2000-07-24
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pub: 2002-06-01
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Drawing on an international range of examples, from Che Guevarra to "The Crying Game," Profit and Pleasure leads the discussion of sexuality to a consideration of material reality and the substance of men and women's everyday lives.


"This book is a must. It focuses on a highly contested terrain: the production of desire. But it never falls into the trap of just following a fashion; unlike many other books, it wants to be useful to its readers, wants to give women more capacity of action by showing how to intervene into the conditions of their lives." -- Frigga Haug, author of Female Sexualization and Beyond Female Masochism

"A must-read. Hennessy gives us a brilliant new Marxist feminist analysis of the commodification of culture in global capitalism and the creation and management of sexual identities. Her historical approach uncovers problems not only with classical identity politics but also with postmodern queer theory and politics with incisive criticisms of Althusser, Williams, Butler and De Lauretis. Unlike some books which do not connect to practice, she sketches a radical collective politics that provides a plausible alternative to the theories she critiques." -- Ann Ferguson, University of Massachusetts

"Hennessy demonstrates lucidly and persuasively the indispensability of the Marxist tradition both to an understanding of how sexuality is organized by the capitalist drive for profit and to the formulation of a radical sexual politics." -- Barbara Foley, Rutgers University, author of Radical Representations: Politics and Form in U.S. Proletarian Fiction, 1929-1941

"Countering the 'localisms' of contemporary queer theory with a materialist feminist analytic, Rosemary Hennessy offers the first book length statement on the political economy of homosexuality. Even readers resistant to her commitments and conclusions will find Profit and Pleasure a necessary tool in rethinking the intimacies between capitalism and sex." -- Robyn Wiegman, Director, Women's Studies, University of California, Irvine

About the Author

Rosemary Hennessy is Associate Professor of English at the University of Albany, SUNY. She is the author of Materialist Feminism and the Politics of Discourse (Routledge, 1993) and the co-editor of Materialist Feminism: A Reader in Class, Difference, and Women's Lives (Routledge, 1997).

Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Popular Culture
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Media Studies