I'm guessing the truth is somewhere in the middle, that women didn't talk like that nearly as much before Sex and the City gave them permission to be blunt and selfish and sex-obsessed, but that doesn't mean they weren't already thinking that way. And once we got permission... woo, baby, just watch us run with it. Now the Sex and the City version of femininity has wedged itself firmly into our culture. And into the culture of contemporary romance novels.
Hex and the City, Sex and the Immortal Bad Boy, and the similarities don't end with plays on the title. The modern day romance heroine may not even be looking for love unending (though in my favorite romances that's what she ends up with). Nope, in the current generation of romance novels, the heroine is just as likely to start out looking for Mr. Right Now as Mr. Right. Cocktails and confidence, the new romance heroine is a different breed than her virginal predecessors. Did Sex and the City do that?
And what about the increased level of sensuality and sexual frankness? Sex scenes, baby. In recent years, romance novels have been steaming it up. Now that the bedroom door has been thrown wide by Sex and the City, readers seem to be looking for more heat. Metaphors and euphemisms are falling away as the savvy start calling things by their Sex approved names.
Is this a good thing? (Yay, honesty & freedom in sexuality!) A bad thing? (Everyone is just so darned superficial these days! There's more to life than Manolos and Cosmos!) Are we heading toward some Sex & the City-instigated cultural apocalypse or is this just the natural progression of women's lib? Equality or licentiousness? Liberation or just a new method of devaluing emotion in favor of blunt sexuality? What's your take?