Nancy Friday, "whose books about gender politics helped redefine American women's sexuality and social identity in the late 20th century," died November 5, the New York Times reported. She was 84. The "shocking premise" of her first book, the 1973 bestseller My Secret Garden: Women's Sexual Fantasies, "was that women had erotic thoughts. Ms. Friday, however, who based the book on hundreds of interviews, said those thoughts were accompanied by considerable guilt and secrecy," the Times observed.
Friday went on to write Forbidden Flowers: More Women's Sexual Fantasies; My Mother/My Self: The Daughter's Search for Identity; Jealousy; The Power of Beauty; Lulu: A Novella; Women on Top: How Real Life Has Changed Women's Sexual Fantasies; and Men in Love: Men's Sexual Fantasies: The Triumph of Love Over Rage.
Noting Friday "was not considered a friend of the women's movement," the Times wrote that she "talked about preferring the company of men to that of women and seemed to take pride in a Ms. magazine review of one of her books, which included the observation 'This woman is not a feminist.' "