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TheDailyBeast: Summer 2012's Lost Legends

3 of 13

Helen Gurley Brown

(Feb. 18, 1922–Aug. 13, 2012)

Women enjoy sex. And sometimes they’re not even married when they have it. It was a landmark notion when Helen Gurley Brown introduced it to mainstream readers in the early 1960s. Brown’s culture-shaking bestseller, "Sex and the Single Girl," was published in 1962. It was a work—championed by some, reviled by others, and progressive to all—that taught unmarried women how to seize the opportunities afforded by single life, even if that “opportunity” happened to be a married man. As the editor of Cosmopolitan from 1965 to 1977, she liberated readers with frank talk about sex, fashion, and what a woman’s well-being really entailed. But more than anything, says The Daily Beast's John Searles of his many years working for Brown at Cosmo: “I learned that Helen was much more than a sex kitten.”

(Marty Lederhandler / AP Photo)
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The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Comcast.

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