Camille Paglia

Critic / Educator / Writer
Date Of Birth:
2 April 1947
Place Of Birth:
Endicott, New York
Best Known As:
The professor-author of 1990’s Sexual Personae
Camille Paglia has been a nationally famous academic and cultural critic since her 1990 book, Sexual Personae: Art and Decadence from Nefertiti to Emily Dickinson. A feminist who identifies as transgender, Paglia has long been a proud outsider and contrarian. She is a vocal critic of “second wave feminism,” which she says is too anti-male. Raised in New York, Paglia counts Amelia Earhart as one of her childhood heroes, and claims Simone de Beauvoir as an inspiration. Paglia completed her undergraduate degree at SUNY at Binghamton (1968), and received her graduate degrees from Yale University (1971 and ’74). Paglia is often at odds with the scholars and feminists of the political left, and is thus considered a voice of reason by some on the right. Like Harold Bloom (a Yale mentor), Paglia is a champion talker with an exceptional breadth of knowledge. Unlike Bloom, Paglia embraces pop culture and has written about pop music, celebrities, pornography, fashion and the movies. For many years she wrote a column for (with breaks, from 1995 until 2016), and since Sexual Personae Paglia has released several books, some of which were bestsellers. Paglia’s books include Sex, Art and American Culture (1992), Vamps & Tramps (1994), Break, Blow, Burn (2005), Glittering Images: A Journey Through Art from Egypt to Star Wars (2012), Free Women Free Men: Sex, Gender and Feminism (2017) and Provocations: Collected Essays (2018).
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