Thursday, August 27, 2009

Feminists for Facials

So Bitch Magazine posted a rather anti-spooj anti-porn article and I posted a comment but it looks like it is up for approval.  In the meantime I thought I'd post it on my blog where we are Feminist for Facials.  

Here is the direct link to the article:Anti-Porn Bitch Magazine Article

What Madison ( A Feminist for Facials) has to say: - excuse the lack of paragraphs it is a rant :)

 I feel like I read a lot of so called feminist articles on the evils of porn that are most likely written by people who don't even watch a lot of porn.  Porn can be feminist.  Porn can be educational, inspire couples, save sex lives, undo some of the sexual repression and body image issues that women grow up with, document our sexual culture, capture chemistry, create visibility for alternative sexual beings, create connection and dialogue around sex between partners, create connection and reduce isolation around fetishes.  I have heard from numerous women who write me telling me that they have wanted to explore being submissive or bdsm for years but they felt that it somehow went against their feminist beliefs but after watching my work it was evident that there was a sense of empowerment, connection and energy exchange happening between me and my partners.  I've also had women say that my work inspired them to become active in their sex positive community, that my work saved their sex life with their partner and inspired new sexual explorations.  I've had these comments from people who identify as queer and as straight.  Porn is a powerful medium.  It shows vulnerability and empowerment as well as connection and release.  There is a rise of feminist and queer porn producers such as myself, Courtney Trouble, and Shine Louise Houston.  For us this is not just a living but is a form of activism and is reflection of our community.  There are plenty of queers and non-queer women who enjoy messy sex and enjoy female ejaculate, male ejaculate, piss and other fluids.  This is an intimate sexual play to be fluid bonded.  And to me it exhibits not an act of degradation but a deep hunger  and lust for your partner that is so great that you want to swallow all of them, including their cum which is a physical manifestation of this persons release of pleasure.  Why wouldn't you want to gobble that up?  Why wouldn't you want to have that closeness with your partner?  Because of  possibly getting some in your hair?   When I am having sex with someone I love or someone I'm hot for I am not thinking about my hair.  This connection has nothing to do with porn.  People have desires for different kinds of sex.  Porn is a vast medium.  We can't say that all advertisements make us want to have sex in a certain way or that all movies make us attracted to a certain kind of person.  Our sexuality is innate, animalistic and porn can often help to guide or inspire or document our sexual desires.  Porn Stars are strong,independent, sexually aware, confident warriors.  We are artists.  We are activists.  We are educators.  We are fearless.  Why shouldn't we be heroes?  I wish when I was 15 that I had exposure to the sex positive adult actresses who are writing about sex and art.  Don't we want women to grow up with a sense of ownership over their sexuality?  In no way do I think that persons who are underage should view porn but if they are aware of a sexually confident strong business woman or an activist as a media figure in the mainstream, I don't think that is giving the wrong impression of sex to young women.  I think it is teaching them to be fearless.


Alana said...

I am so excited that you wrote a killer response to this article. I was really surprised at how narrow minded and poorly written the original story was written. I know we both follow @bitchmedia on twitter and when I clicked on this link and was too frustrated to be inspired to writ my own decent comment I though, man, Madison would definitely have something to say about this! Thanks for being awesome.

Anonymous said...

Thank you so much for your thoughts on this, Madison. It's so refreshing to hear somebody so smart discuss sexuality like you do. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Why shouldn't we be heroes?
You are my hero! ;)
And if we're talking about bad teen and tween sex, we should be talking about Christians having unlubricated and rushed anal sex so that they can keep their "virginity." Crazy hypocritical evangelicalism is tons more dangerous than mainstream porn.

Karen said...

Thank you for writing such a well thought out response. That article was just awful, very disappointed to read it in Bitch.

Anonymous said...

Excellent response and I so totally agree.

Momoko Price said...

Hey there,

I wrote a few responses to the Bitch article as well, defending the choice to celebrate submission, porn, and all that good stuff.

Now I've finally decided to withdraw after someone threw this anti-sex bomb:

"Some of U/us have been in the BDSM lifestyle, and found that MOST of the folks involved in it had serious mental problems. Many, if not most, serious BDSMers have a great deal of difficulty maintaining stable relationships. Many men in the lifestyle are just abusers, and most of the women are just working out daddy/self-esteem issues.

Dominance and submission is a BAD model for lasting, fulfilling relationships. "Submissive" is a BAD thing to be, in a relationship or anywhere else, save in brief fantasy or fantasy enactment. The author is RIGHT when she equates submissive with harmful.

Y/your personal internet testimony as to your sanity or femininst credentials or mental health is no more valid than M/mine or A/anyone else's. Maybe Y/you wouldn't be so sensitive about Y/your "lifestyle" if Y/you were sure in Y/your gut that Y/you were really, truly happy."

I was stunned. Just floored at the negativity. Kinda think it's worth walking away from the thread at this point.

Also thought so after seeing about 55 people arguing about the "real" meaning of pubic hair.

Ps. Sat in on your cute seminar at Northbound in Toronto - have been following up on you ever since. Big fan! Love ya!

Momoko said...

This is getting a bit ridiculous, but someone just equated BDSM with neo-Nazis.

You can see the misguided thread here.

I'm going to move on away from the article now, as I've wasted enough time. But I'd really love it if just a few people took the time to say that they disagree with this poster.

Kind of like a "honk if you like BDSM" plea, I suppose. \\

Cheers, M

I feel a bit gross now.

Momoko said...

Oops, here:

Momoko Price said...

I wonder if the commenter JPJ who helped respond to said evil anti-BDSM troll on Bitch was acting on behalf of my request for support. If so, I v. appreciate it, and for the record, the Bitch Mag administrators promptly took down the hateful thread when I drew their attention to it.

It now reads:

"This comment and its thread have been deleted by Bitch administrators because it began spiraling way the eff out of control. Personally attacking other commenters is not okay, and neither is highjacking the conversation away from the original post.

Team Bitch"


And if you are out there, JPJ, feel free to add me to your Twitter or FB. You rock my world.

JRB said...

This is a great post. It really broadened my perspective on the subject.

As I've gotten older my estimation of porn has grown increasingly negative, based on what I often imagine to be the disparities of power between men and women in the industry.

But, of course, the problem with this are the disparities, not the fact that porn exists! Thank you for reminding us of this, and demonstrating an approach that all feminists should be eager to support.

Anonymous said...

I love this piece, but I also have to say that the author of the other piece has a point too.

1) I would love it if porn facials were all like what you're talking about. I'm a guy and that's what I crave -- the feeling of being devoured by a woman who wants it.

But, the reality is that maybe 99% of porn facials are not with participants who really enjoy them. Trust me -- this is a big part of my porn surfing habit and I'm almost continually disappointed. Instead, there is a much larger community of men who enjoy it as an act of degradation, of dominating the woman. The woman's indifference or even revulsion is actually a plus to these people, and we're not talking about willing submission here. This is even to be found in mainstream rap lyrics, where kicking the woman out the door after she's swallowed your cum is a common theme.

2) The sheer ubiquity of the facial scene is getting to be a problem.

I do find it plausible that it is giving younger men a very unrealistic depiction of what all sex is like. Most women don't enjoy this, and most real sex doesn't end like this.

3) It's getting to be a cliche. Not that this isn't a problem in mainstream porn generally, but it's almost lost all meaning other than "end of porn scene".