Working in the space where the personal meets the political, Rachel Hills is a writer, speaker and activist. She draws upon her education in gender studies and sociology to transform the way people understand their sexual experiences, and find solidarity with others whose histories and beliefs might be very different from their own.
Rachel is the Executive Director of Break The Sex Myth and the author of the The Sex Myth: The Gap Between Our Fantasies and Reality, which unpacks the invisible norms and unspoken assumptions that shape the way we think about sex.
For years, Rachel harbored feelings of difference and defect when she considered the contrast between her own sex life and the ones portrayed in the glossy magazines she wrote for. When she realized that she was not alone in feeling this way, Rachel began her work on The Sex Myth, setting out to understand why sex was a matter of profound anxiety for so many people, and where those feelings came from. Rachel’s cultural, social, and historical explorations sought to determine what stories we are sold about sexuality, and how these ideals were perpetuated in our own everyday actions. In the seven years that followed, she interviewed more than 200 people across three continents, and was contacted by over 1000 people who were keen to share their own thoughts and experiences.
An outspoken feminist and international journalist, Rachel’s work has been published in more than thirty of the world’s leading political and lifestyle publications, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Cosmopolitan, Elle, TIME, NYMag.com, the New Republic, the New Inquiry, Daily Beast, Buzzfeed, Vogue, and many others. As a speaker, she has engaged audiences in the United States, Canada, the UK, and Australia in lectures, workshops, two TEDx talks.
Rachel’s relaxed and participatory talks and workshops help audiences understand why they think, feel, and act the way they do when it comes to sex. She aims to transform feelings of shame or anxiety that individuals might have about their own sexual histories, and to encourage her audience to be less judgmental of the sexual identities and decisions of others.
Born in Sydney, Australia, Rachel now lives in New York City. For updates on Rachel’s latest work and musings, subscribe to her monthly newsletter at tinyletter.com/rachelhills.