Monday, December 30, 2013
Posted by K D Grace at 4:00 AM
Saturday, December 28, 2013
Thursday, December 26, 2013
by Jean Roberta
During the winter holiday season, when occasions for partying abound, I feel a rant coming on. Lest I sound like a perpetual complainer, I will put my discontent in perspective.
I’m sure I’m more privileged than most people in the world, and probably more than most readers of this blog. Looking over the events of 2013, I’m grateful for my blessings, and relieved that my misfortunes were no worse.
In the summer, I moved years worth of books and papers into my new office in the university English Department where I teach first-year classes. My new home-away-from-home has an incredible amount of shelf space for my books, plus a window to the outside world so I can see the weather before I step out in it.
In September, I taught my first credit course in creative writing. This favour was granted by the head of the English Department, even though it is a second-year class usually taught by scholars with Ph.D.s (something I never managed to get, for various reasons). Teaching a small class of eager young writers was an adventure that helped refuel my enthusiasm for my job. My usual first-year classes are mandatory for most students, and therefore I get many recruits who would rather avoid writing essays about literature.
In 2013, I also saw more of my words in print than in any previous year. On the scholarly front, I co-edited OutSpoken, a collection of articles and creative work based on a series of presentations on queer (lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender) topics by faculty members. The co-ordinator of the series (also head of the Theatre Department) had been invited by the university press to put a book together, he graciously invited me to co-edit, and I accepted. I also had an article accepted for a book about teaching vampire literature which was edited by Dr. Lisa Nevarez of the English Department of Siena College in New York state. I’ve been told that Teaching the Vampire will be released by McFarland Press at any moment.
My historical erotic novella, The Flight of the Black Swan, appeared early in 2013 from Lethe Press. (The cover art is by Ben Baldwin, who was nominated as best fantasy artist of Britain.) A few months later, my collection of erotic stories, The Princess and the Outlaw: Tales of the Torrid Past, also appeared from Lethe Press. Both books got a few glowing reviews.
However, during two family gatherings in the cozy house I share with my spouse (Christmas Eve for immediate family, Christmas Day for two old and dear friends, their grown children, their spouses, children and their friends), I didn’t mention my publications. It was understood that the non-fiction was too academic to interest anyone I know outside the Ivory Tower, while my fiction is too raunchy to be mentioned in the presence of children. I wonder how many writers, particularly erotic writers, are in this predicament. (In all fairness, I had already shown my new books to those closest to me. They don’t read my books or stories, but they accept my writing hobby as less harmful than most other addictions.)
On both occasions, I was encouraged to show off – guess what? – my new surgical scar. On November 4, the first snowy day in the town where I live, I slipped on the ice and broke my left wrist in several places. Thanks to the Canadian health-care system, I was rushed into surgery within 24 hours, and had my wrist repaired and reinforced with a long metal plate that shows up clearly in X-rays. (I will set off metal detectors in airports for the rest of my life.) During my short stay in the hospital and my longer convalescence, my two stepsons and my spouse were an impressive source of support. Later, when my cast was removed and I was shown X-rays of my damaged and repaired wrist, Spouse took photos of these images her cell-phone, and circulated them among the assembled crowd during our holiday suppers. Everyone commented that my incision has healed well.
On Christmas Day, before the second flock of guests were due to arrive, our furnace stopped working after keeping us toasty-warm during a week of very cold temperatures. Although the outside temperature had risen, we couldn’t welcome our guests into an unheated house, so we had to pay a repairman for his labour and a new furnace motor. He was honest enough to tell us that if we could have waited another two days, the bill would have been $100 less. But such is life. Luckily, we didn’t have to choose between warmth and food.
Medical and home-maintenance issues were not the only topics of conversation, but they seemed to be of general interest. Well, of course. Everyone lives in a body, and most folks (especially in Canada in the winter) have a dwelling-place.
I couldn’t help wondering how many other writers can only discuss their writing with other writers, or with any readers who can be found. And how many erotic writers must go far out of their way to prevent relatives, “friends”, coworkers and bosses from finding out that they write about sex, the stuff of life. (Note my previous comment about the universal human condition of living in a body.) News items about the inconsistent and fluctuating policies of booksellers regarding “obscene” material show that there is not (and never has been) any real consensus about what this is. In the current cultural climate, I’m well aware that I’m probably luckier than most.
My employer is exceptionally tolerant of everything I write, and for that I am truly grateful. My holiday wish is for peace on earth and good will toward all the writers who are brave enough to write about something that really (let’s be honest) interests everyone. The impulse to write anything seems to be a certain kind of craziness, and a desire to write about subjects formerly considered “unspeakable” still requires courage. I’m glad I live in a world where so many have felt the bite of that bug.
May the Deity of our choice bless us, every one.
Tuesday, December 24, 2013
by Kathleen Bradean
When I realized I had the Christmas Eve slot, I tried to think of a suitably festive entry that would, I don't know, make writer's hearts glow like twinkle lights on the tree in Rockefeller Plaza or something like that. I'd love to give every writer that rush of joy that comes when a story reveals itself. Maybe an hour of writing as gleeful as puddle-splashing used to be back when we weren't stodgy enough to care about wet shoes.
Not going to happen.
I tried. I really did. I'm not cut out for O Henry's Gift of the Magi style holiday stories. Or Dickens A Christmas Carol. Or Jean Shepherd's A Christmas Story (you probably know the movie better than his books. May I suggest Wanda Hickey's Night of Golden Memories, and Other Disasters). Or even David Sedaris' SantaLand Diaries. Every thought turned from glowing, welcoming candles in windows to the Little Match Girl freezing to death while she hallucinates. Okay, not that big of a downer, but if I wrote a Christmas story, it would probably be as melancholy as Judy Garland singing Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas.
The problem is that writing that story would demand that I tap into a rather bleak moment in my life. You know how there are method actors? I'm a method writer. I cry my eyes out when I write sad scenes. (You have no idea how hard it is to admit that) A scene that takes a reader half an hour to go through may take my weeks to write, and during that time I stay immersed in the emotions I'm trying to capture so I can experience the physical part as well as the feelings, and it's exhausting. It's difficult enough to do for characters who exist only in my imagination, but at least I can walk away from it if I need to. If I'm pulled too deeply into it, I can shake it off. I'm not sure it would be that simple if I delved back into something that was very real.
Plus, oh lord, can you imagine the humiliation from pouring your soul out like that across the page? I'd be running an emotional peep show for voyeurs to examine like a frog opened on a dissection board. Would it be even worse if I exposed my guts like that and it bored readers? Oh my god. People walk past pain every day and ignore it. Would it be like being a little match girl, but striking my matches for the crowd while the indifferent world passes by?
Oh, now I'm just being histrionic. But I think this is where we talk about fear. Writers who are fearless say things frightened writers don't. They dare to dig deep into those things that make you squirm. They sit in the booth and bare their soul to anyone who plunks in a quarter. Writing erotica is a fearless thing, but it's not nearly as hard as writing raw, naked truth about yourself. I'm not sure I'm that fearless. It hurts too much. Or maybe this is where we talk about suffering for art.
Maybe one day I'll work up the courage to talk about how when I was three my parents begged me not to tell my older sisters there was no Santa because it would ruin their Christmas. I never believed in magic. I'm simply not wired that way. But then there was that year when I was in my twenties when we were so very, very poor. My daughter was three, and I wished so hard that Santa might be real, just for one night, so that when we woke Christmas morning, there might be a tree, lights, and a gift for my little girl. And how, for the first time in my life, I actually woke Christmas morning and peeked into the living room to see if Santa had visited, because I needed it that much. And of course I felt like an idiot for being disappointed, because I always knew there was no hope. Strike the match, and watch the flame die.
Great - now I've depressed the hell out of you. Merry Christmas indeed. I knew I should have trotted out a glowing tree in soft focus, with a fire crackling merrily across the room, and put a cup of wassail in your hand.
Posted by Kathleen Bradean at 5:00 AM
Monday, December 23, 2013
by Lucy Felthouse
Wow, my last post of 2013. How did that happen?! This year seems to have flown by, but I guess it's because I've been so busy. And I'll definitely never complain about that - business is good, I'm writing and publishing lots of books, nothing to complain about!
So now I look forward to 2014. I already have releases lined up, which is awesome, and there are other books out for submission which I have my fingers crossed for.
So what are my goals?
- To finish and submit The Persecution of the Wolves to a publisher
- To submit to four specific annual anthologies which I haven't yet been published in - and no, I'm not going to name them, I don't want to jinx it!
- To finish two co-author projects
- To write at least one solo novel
Saturday, December 21, 2013
By Lisabet Sarai
Wednesday, December 18, 2013
I was born on December 31st, but that’s not why I like December because New Year’s Eve isn’t the best time to have a birthday. (It sucks, actually.) What I like about December is the light. The quick-fading afternoon sunset, dyeing the horizon in fiery orange. The velvety purple and blue shadows of dusk. The silver stars of Orion looming in the night sky. I also look forward to a twenty-six-year-old holiday tradition my husband and I started back in our grad school days: baking and frosting X-rated sugar cookies (the snowman with the big boner is a favorite) late in the evening, followed by other sweet indulgences. Which is all fitting because December is the Lord of Misrule’s domain, a time of magic and possibility, dreams and desires…and plenty of dessert.
But one December several years ago, even the enchantment of the light or a bite of horny snowman cookie couldn’t chase back the gloom of a family crisis. My mother had died an agonizing death from a diabetes drug and my family’s thwarted effort to seek justice left me wary of the fictions in our legal system and in life. My own failed attempts to tell our story to a broader public left me doubting my own supposed “way with words.” I decided to take a break from all writing. It was a necessary step for me to heal perhaps, but at the time I wondered if I would ever write again.
With no deadlines or ideas for new stories swirling through my head I wasn’t quite sure how I would fill the vacant December days. I wanted to do something, though, something frivolous and indulgent. I would make a gingerbread house. Not the simple, six-piece chalets I’d baked for my kids to decorate in past years, but a grand Victorian mansion that would send Martha Stewart on a two-week insomnia jag as she struggled vainly to do me one better. So I cranked up the carols and started tracing out the patterns based on a design from Steven Stellingwerf’s The Gingerbread Book (sadly no longer in print). I estimated the blueprints would take an hour or so and I could start my baking therapy that afternoon. Two days and twenty pattern pieces later, I was getting the sense that my construction project might turn out to be all too similar to a real-life contracting job.
It got worse. The instructions called for me to stir up a double recipe of dough fragrant with molasses, cinnamon, and ginger. Four batches and a few more days later, my entire dining room table was covered with miniature chocolate-brown walls, roofs, chimneys and shutters. My fingers were blistered and my arms sore, but the real work had only begun. Each piece needed to be glued with a mortar of egg white and confectioner’s sugar then patiently held together until the new section hardened enough to stand on its own. Six batches of mortar were followed by six more of decorative icing to add the necessary “gingerbread” flourishes. It was an orgy of beating and whipping to make the most enthusiastic BDSM aficionado wilt with exhaustion.
By then I’d abandoned any plan or expectation and gave myself over to the meditative rhythms of sifting, stirring, and slathering. My body swayed as I piped zigzag designs in snow white frosting on the tiny eaves. I hummed cheerfully as I transformed upended sugar cones into conifers with swirls of green icing. In the end my Victorian mansion had too many off-center shutters and listing candy cane porch posts to threaten Martha’s supremacy as the dominatrix of edible architecture, but the sense of satisfaction I felt as I stood back and admired my “Holiday Inn” resembled rather uncannily a state of post-orgasmic bliss
And that’s when the real thrills began.
I’d like to take a moment to pause and remind you of the kinds of responses you get when you share the draft of a story with your writing group, virtual or fleshly, or worse still a well-meaning friend who asks to see what you’ve been writing. All but the most trustworthy paragons who truly respect your sensibility will try to improve your piece with hatchet-strokes of criticism. They’ll call the plot predictable, the protagonist wimpy, the sex too shocking or vanilla (a common complaint for my stories although you can’t do better for your taste buds than high-quality vanilla extract, especially Mexican for cookies and Tahitian for custards). They’ll tell you your experiment with second-person narrative fell flat, they hate your favorite funny image of the hero’s cock as a cannon poised over a Civil War battlefield, and the story would be much better if you rewrote it exactly the way they’d have done it if it had been their idea. Don’t even get me started on editors’ cryptic critiques and agents’ hackneyed brush-offs.
As you might have guessed by now, I was used to having my artistic children mauled by heartless critics, and so I was hesitant to expose my fledgling gingerbread mansion to the public gaze. Since it took up half the dining room table, however, I didn’t have much choice.
I’m delighted to report that the reviews, dear reader, were as glowing as a house decked with Christmas lights. Everyone loved my little country hotel, man and woman, young and old. Their jaws gaped in wonder, they sighed with enchantment, their hands twitched desirously in anticipation of the eating orgy that would mark my masterpiece’s inevitable January demolition. No one made snide mention of the crooked shutters. Not a soul suggested I should have used the #24 decorating tube instead of #30. There were no indignant protests that gingerbread is too coarse and spicy—vulgar even—and if I were a serious artist I would restrict myself to socially acceptable sugar cookie dough.
As the days passed and the delicious praise continued, a holiday miracle of sorts did occur. Without the cloudy distractions of careless judgment, I saw the real meaning of what I’d accomplished. I’d actually created an entire mansion with nothing but my dedication and imagination, plus a few pounds of flour and sugar and spice. And while I was happy that others were enchanted, what mattered most was that it gave me great pleasure, too.
The following week I sat down to write a story. It was about a widow who overcomes a long mourning by seducing a younger man with a special cookie recipe. When I first I sat down to face the blank screen after my six-month bout of writer’s block, I was a little worried I’d be rusty. To my surprise, the words came fast and easy as if I’d already done my warm-up lap. Only later did it hit me that I was actually writing my second story. My Victorian mansion had been the first, nourishing my soul and then my body with December’s magic transformation of darkness into light.
Donna George Storey is the author of Amorous Woman (recently released as an ebook) and a new collection of short stories, Mammoth Presents the Best of Donna George Storey. Learn more about her work at www.DonnaGeorgeStorey.com or http://www.facebook.com/DGSauthor
Sunday, December 15, 2013
2009. Click on images to read personal ads.)
The Lonely Prince
By C. Sanchez-Garcia
The King died and the Prince became the new king, but still the lonely Prince had no wife. So the poor, unmarried Prince spent all his time and his money any way he wanted and went hunting and fishing with his friends as often as he pleased and took yoga and gourmet cooking classes, and studied American literature and poetry and made wild love with hundreds of exciting and interesting women from all over the world and lived happily ever after.
The Lonely Prince
by Daddys Bad Grrrl w/ C. Sanchez-Garcia
The Lonely Prince
By Ernest Hemingway and C. Sanchez-Garcia
"You must get married." said the King.
"I want to be a bull fighter." said the Prince.
"There aren’t any bull fighters’ anymore." said the King.
"Who must I marry?"
"There is a Princess in the Kingdom of whiz. She's all right."
"I'll see what I can do." said the Prince.
The Prince left and the King shut the door after him.
In the Kingdom of whiz the Prince was introduced to Margarita. It had been a hot day. He had walked. It had been a good walk and he was not ashamed. The Princess was in her room with her chambermaid. "What do you want, bright boy?" said the Princess.
"He stinks." Said the Chambermaid.
"She says you stink, bright boy." Said the Princess.
"My father says I should be married." Said the Prince. "You have a sweet can."
"Bright boy is just full of bright ideas, ain't he Molly?" Said the Princess.
"He's not. He's dumb." said the chambermaid.
"She says you’re dumb, bright boy." said the Princess.
The Prince shrugged. He lit a cigarette, but did not offer one. He waited for her.
"I am having an affair with a bull fighter." said the Princess. "Juan Belmonte."
"He’s a good kid." said the prince.
"He stinks too. All men stink." said the Chambermaid
"So tell me, bright boy. Why the hell would I marry you?" said the Princess.
"You might be good with a husband." said the Prince.
"I wouldn’t." said the Princess.
"If that's the way you want it." said the Prince. "It's all right."
"You think its all right?" Said the Princess. "He thinks its all right."
"He stinks." said the Chambermaid.
"You're a funny guy, bright boy. Still think I have a nice can?" said the Princess.
"Sure," said the Prince. "Why not?"
"Take off, bright boy. That's the way I want it." said the Princess.
"Okay." said the Lonely Prince.
After the king died, the Prince took up fishing. He had no luck in him for the fishing. He was a Prince who fished off the Gulf in a yacht and had gone eighty days now without taking a fish. He went lion hunting in Africa and shot a 500 pound male on the third day. "Damn fine lion." said the Prince over a whiskey and soda.
The Lonely Prince
By Ray Bradbury and C. Sanchez-Garcia
"Marriage!" cried the King. "Babies! Grandchildren clambering, clinging, dropping like ripe fruit!"
"But Dad. . . " whined the Prince.
"Run! Feel! Dash! Live! Feel your life slipping through your fingers - feel it damn you."
"But Dad - "
"When I was your age, why I had conquered half the world!" The old King slapped his knotted oak knee with a mahogany hand. His ancient eyes glowed in his skull like a Jack A lantern. "The Princess of Whiz is waiting. No - pining! Go to her before her heart beats another beat!"
"I don’t see the rush." said the Prince, with a sigh of October leaves blowing down midnight streets. “And I’m shy.”
The old king was no longer listening. Skinny skeleton fingers were snaking like spiders through a wooden steam trunk. "Ah! Ah ha!"
A magicians flourish.
A pair of ratty black sneakers dangled from his fingertips. "There you mayst behold child, the enchanted sneakers of Merlin. See! Wings for your feet. These are the shoes that bestow - invisibility!"
"But to do so you must be naked! It will not make your clothes invisible, only you yourself."
But could this be? To be invisible as midnight smoke, to pinch pretty girls bottoms, steal apple pies from farmer’s windows, steal the sleep from eyes of maids, sneak through windows like a succubus.
The Prince dropped his clothes, naked as the sun and naked as the moon. He tied on the sneakers and held up his hands waiting. "How do I look?"
The King spun like a top. "Where are you, child? Where have you gone? You've vanished! Oh, it reminds me of the old days!"
"I'm off, Father." Said the naked and lonely Prince. The magic sneakers of Merlin carried him over hill and dale with the sound of green grass and the rush of summer running.
The Kingdom of Whiz - and there! The Princess' open window. He climbed in.
She was there.
The Princess was alabaster and soft vanilla ice cream.
"It is I!" cried the Prince. "Come to sweep you off your feet and be my bride!
"You're as naked as a rock!" She cried.
"You're much deceived." said the Prince. "I'm invisible. You can’t see me."
"I see the white of your eye, the bats in your belfry, the lust in your heart. And - oh my." The Princess gazed at his mighty organ. "You're a loony. But you're hung like a horse."
"I'm invisible!" said the Prince, stamping his bare foot. "All you hear is my voice."
"All right," said the Princess doubtfully, but taking the measure of him with growing excitement. "What would make you visible?"
"Uh . . . a kiss!" His Father hadn't said so yet the Prince felt it to be true. The Princess's gaze stirred his manhood so fiercely the Universe seemed to crouch like a black cat.
"Is one kiss enough?"
"Try." Said the Prince. He stepped to her and held out his arms. She touched her lips to his.
"I see your head." she said. "But that's all."
The Prince became afraid. "Only my head?"
"I think I have to kiss you for each part to be visible."
"Kiss my hand." he said.
She kissed his hand.
"I see your arm!" She kissed his other hand, noting his mighty manhood had become extremely visible and had begun to radiate heat like a desert wind. "I see your other arm." She kissed his chest. "I see your chest." She dropped to her knees and clasped him around the waist. She kissed his leg with hummingbird lips. "There's your leg." With the rasp of a tigress tongue she kissed the other leg. "And there's its fellow."
"Don’t leave me this way." he pleaded.
"It’s better to be invisible than only half visible." She kissed his feet.
"Am I visible yet?" The Prince staggered, silver stars and crimson flowers bursting in his fevered brain. "I'm going to explode! Burst like lightning, all hell fire and fourth of July thunder!"
"Only the middle is left to be kissed." she said. "Lay down over there and we'll take care of it now." He lay on the bed and the Princess dropped her clothes on the floor. She completed the process of restoring his visibility on the bed though she lingered much longer over the middle than the rest of his body. Complaining how the Prince kept undoing her work and becoming invisible she repeated the process over and over and lived happily ever after.
Posted by Garceus at 8:26 AM
Thursday, December 12, 2013
|If we wore these everyday, no one would think they were sexy.|
Of course, we've spent years hearing about the way pornography - any kind of pornography - normalizes the view of women as sexual objects and encourages violence against them (Horeck, Days, & Don, 2013). Attempts to verify this through research have resulted either in highly ambiguous results, or actually contradicted these claims. A literature review of a large number of studies has concluded that porn is not even a co-relational factor in violence against women (Ferguson, 2013). In fact, there is good data to suggest the opposite; that the more widespread the access to pornography, the lower the violence to women (Amato & Law, n.d.).
As of January, 2014, it will be illegal in the UK to possess material that contains eroticized depictions of rape. Not possession of photographs or videos of actual rape - that was always illegal, but material containing fictional depictions of rape (Zara, 2013). According to many sources, including the Prime Minister, David Cameron, exposure to this kind of pornography 'normalizes' sexual violence against women (Morris, 2103).
My problem with the word 'normalize' is that it has been widely interpreted to mean that exposure to whatever it is that is currently offensive to us will cause us to think that it's okay. They'll stop having negative feelings about it, and embrace it as part of their everyday lives. I'm not disputing that constant exposure to something will change the way we think about it - that would be cognitively impossible for that not to occur. What I'm disputing is our assumptions about two things.
The first is a widespread assumption that fictionalized versions of horrific realities are interpreted by the brain in the same way as witnessing or experiencing those realities. I can accept, for instance, that small children might have difficulties telling the difference between a fictionalized, mediated version of war and war itself. But adults reading "War and Peace" or watching "Saving Private Ryan" don't believe they are actually experiencing war. Admittedly, we do suspend disbelief when we read or view fiction, but we don't mistake it for reality.
The second assumption is that repeated exposure to mediated forms of real horrors will cause us to feel neutral or even positively about them. This has no basis in fact either. Indeed, in the last century, we have been exposed to more mediated versions of reality than in the whole of human history. More war, more death, more rape, more everything. And as much as the media would like you to believe you live in a terribly dangerous time, the truth is that we are safer, healthier and longer-lived than we have ever been.
As a woman, a writer of erotic fiction and a questioner of received wisdom, I do believe that the widespread availability of explicit sexual imagery must, indeed, be having some effect on us. I just don't accept that it is either wholly positive or wholly negative. For instance, I'm pretty sure that far fewer people today feel that there is anything fundamentally evil about sex; I think porn has played a part in this. I think the quantity of mediated sex out there has allowed many more people to admit to watching and enjoying it.
I also believe - although I have no hard evidence of this - porn has served to 'model' what sex should look like. After all, for many people, it's the only sex they see (other than their own). And porn sex is, by its nature, exaggerated and dramatized. I think there are people who may (because they aren't having the sort of sex that looks like the sex in porn) feel a greater sense of dissatisfaction with the sex they do have.
In the Middle Ages, children learned what normal sex looked like by witnessing it - either seeing it, or hearing it in a darkened room because private space was at a premium. Today we'd call that child abuse. These days, other than porn, the only way to see real sex between real people is by being a voyeur, which is loaded with its own taboos. It’s hardly a wonder that amateur porn became so popular. There is some sense that this is real sex. Sadly, because of the fact that it needs to stand up against produced porn, more and more commercial porn memes creep into amateur porn. Conversely, commercial porn producers have sought to make their product look more 'amateur' in order to appeal to amateur porn viewers. They tend to fail miserably.
What I'd really like to dig my inquisitional fingers into is the idea of 'normalization' as it applies to the erotic. I want to make a distinction between the sexual and the erotic, because I am increasingly coming to believe that there is the biological urge to scratch the itch, which requires nothing other than a relatively functional body and no imagery or semiotics at all, and something else. This something else is the intersection between that biological imperative and language. Not language in the sense of words, but language in the sense that, as our brains mature, we process reality through the veil of language. There is nothing fundamentally sexy about a black, patent leather, high-heeled shoe. It is language in the larger sense, in the way we make relational linkages and chunk feeling and meaning together, that has made the 'fuck-me-pump' the iconically sexy item it has become.
I'm going to call this 'the erotic' as distinct from 'the sexual.' The erotic is heavily dependent on limits: on what is allowed and what is forbidden (Bataille, 1962; Foucault, 1980; Paz, 1995). There is a reason for why the adjectives we use about the erotic ideas that turn us on are negative: naughty, filthy, dirty, forbidden, nasty, sinful, obscene, perverse, wanton, illicit, etc. We want, most passionately, the things we shouldn't want. It doesn't mean that we act to get them, or need to transgress socially accepted behaviour in order to be sexually satisfied, but our mind goes there. Of course, positive things can also be erotic: beauty, love, devotion, affection, perfection, purity, faith, truth... but even as I type these words, and even as you read them, it starts to become obvious that erotic desire feeds more voraciously off the forbidden than the allowed.
Here's the paradox: things that become 'normalized' can no longer be the stuff of erotic fantasy. So, I'm not arguing that normalization doesn't occur. I'm suggesting that it is a self-limiting phenomenon. I'm suggesting that we are twisted little creatures who don't get off on the 'normalized'. And so our fears as to its consequences may be somewhat hyperbolic.
My greatest antipathy towards the 'normalization' of the erotically forbidden is that it will lose its power to be erotic. I believe that our inner, transgressive, politically incorrect and ugly erotic desires are part of who we are as human beings. Our ability to understand that these things we want, things that when acted out in the real world would be atrocities, are part of the mechanism that preserves our inner and outer worlds as separate. Like fantasy, fictionality affords us a playground for our deeply unsocial selves. It doesn't school us in what is acceptable in the real world. It underscores and helps to contrast between the two.
- Bataille, G. (1962). Death and sensuality: A study of Eroticism and the Taboo. New York: Walker and Company.
- D’Amato, A. (2006). Porn Up, Rape Down. Northwestern University School of Law: Public Law and Legal Theory Research Paper Series, 1–6. Retrieved from http://anthonydamato.law.northwestern.edu/adobefiles/porn.pdf
- Ferguson, C. J. (2013). Pornography. In Adolescents, Crime, and the Media: A Critical Analysis, Advancing Responsible Adolescent Development (pp. 141–158). New York, NY: Springer New York. doi:10.1007/978-1-4614-6741-0
- Foucault, M. (1980). A Preface to Transgression. In Language, Counter-Memory, Practice: Selected Essays and Interviews (pp. 29–52). Cornell University Press.
- Hochschartner, J. (2013, November 29). Video Games Normalize Animal Cruelty. Retrieved December 8, 2013, from Counterpunch.org: http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/11/29/video-games-normalize-animal-cruelty/
- Horeck, T., Days, S., & Don, B. (2013). Public rape: representing violation in fiction and film. Routledge.
- Jones, A. (2013, November 22). Sexualization Thing Gap Retrieved December 8, 2013, from TheWire.com: http://www.thewire.com/culture/2013/11/sexualization-thigh-gap/355434/
- Morris, C. (2103, November 17). ‘Rape porn’ possession to be punished by three years in jail, David Cameron to announce. Retrieved December 8, 2013, from Metro.co.uk: http://metro.co.uk/2013/11/17/rape-porn-possession-to-be-punished-by-three-years-in-jail-david-cameron-to-announce-4189512/
- Paz, O. (1995). The double flame: love and eroticism (p. 84). New York: Harcourt Brace. Retrieved from http://books.google.co.uk/books?id=AeKEAAAAIAA
- Zara, C. (2013, November 18). Rape Porn Ban Comes To UK: Possession Of Images Depicting Simulated Rape To Be Punishable By Jail. Retrieved December 8, 2013, from International Business Times: http://www.ibtimes.com/rape-porn-ban-comes-uk-possession-images-depicting-simulated-rape-be-punishable-jail-1474952
Tuesday, December 10, 2013
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