Scorpio Risen

2008: Time for a new sexual revolution?

Posted on: 5 January, 2008

Happy new year folks! 🙂

I usually feel optimistic at the beginning of each new year. I like to tell myself that it’s a new year, and a new slate. It is in this vein that I believe now would be a good marker for the beginnings of a new sexual revolution.

Do not get me wrong, we have definitely made progress the last few decades. I’d hate to live in a society where the 1950s model of sexuality reigned supreme. However, I really have to question how far we really have come?

You cannot tell me that we still do not have seriously screwed-up issues relating to sex and sexuality! I’ve personally already written some posts about some of these issues. Women are still objectified (hell, read any lad’s mag) and treated as meat (hello – roasting), raunch culture just sucks, there are some selfish fuckers out there (not everyone, though), and disgusting attitudes to rape and rape victims (the amount of posts I could link to on this subject!). And some people are just so fucking clueless. All these – and other issues, such as sexual double standards – need to be addressed, dammit. I mean – talk about a suckfest.

Sure, there is more openness about sexuality. And it’s not like sex is swept under the carpet, hidden away. Hell, we all know it’s completely the opposite: it’s right up there in your face. But it’s always the same image and representation of sex. Isn’t that perhaps a bit troubling, right? And from which perspective is the vast majority of sexuality represented? Hmm…let me take a guess…

Whenever I’ve read anything about the sexual revolution of the ’60ies, I am always a bit troubled by the part Playboy/Hefner played in it. I always really feel that that kinda set a precedent. Sure, sex is now more in the open, but it’s got bunny ears and shit. I really don’t like that. I don’t feel comfortable with how much the media views sexuality, and particularly women, from a male gaze. I really don’t feel comfortable with the effect this has on women’s self esteem. You’ve heard about that APA report which found “that the proliferation of sexualized images of girls and young women in advertising, merchandising, and media is harmful to girls’ self-image and healthy development”, right? I have this theory that all this – the objectification, the male-centric sexuality bolleaux which is touted as the definition of sexuality, bla bla bla – is largely due to the part Hefner and co. played in the sexual revolution of the 60ies. Hence, my thinking that we need a damn new sexual revolution, all our very own. One which won’t be hijacked by capitalism (I know – some dream, hey.)

There are also yet more issues, some very disturbing.

For example of pure disturbance, the charity Marie Stopes discovered in a recent poll of 1000 girls aged 11-15 that:

  • Only half knew AIDS could be prevented by using condoms
  • 40% thought it was illegal for under 16s to buy condoms
  • The latest rumour is that you can’t get pregnant having sex on a copy of the Yellow Pages.

Clearly, in Britain we need more damn sex education. We need to revolutionise our sex ed. (America damn well does too – abstinence only, what the fuck is up with that?!) We need to address where the hell kids get these dumbarse ideas from, and we need to damn well make sure they’re equipped with information!

 I just think we all deserve a better society. One with no double standards – so, no judgements – one where we are all able to gain access to objective and impartial information, and allowed and able to make our own informed decisions about our own sex lives. One where there is no one standard or “norm” for sexuality – where homosexuals are just as well represented, for example. No shame. No misogyny. 🙂

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4 Responses to "2008: Time for a new sexual revolution?"

Where is the logic in the Yellow Pages being an effective contraceptive? I hadn’t heard that one, goodness knows how it came about…

I agree about Playboy. It’s some of the mildest porn out there so it seems innocuous, but I feel like it gives a far more negative message about sexuality than lots of harder-core stuff. And it’s especially problematic because (as you mention) it was so very influential.

Playboy presents sexuality in terms of men enjoying the finer things in life by being part of a boys’ club where men discuss serious topics among themselves, and women are, well, one of the things being enjoyed, like a fine glass of cognac. I think this theme was motivated by a desire to remove the stigma from looking at porn, changing it from “you’re a pervert” to “you’re a classy guy.”

But it doesn’t contain a positive message for women at all, rather the opposite. Their emphasis on being “classy” — including the fact that they draw the line and won’t show certain types of hard-core views — reinforces the idea that going too far changes a woman from “classy” to “trashy.” Rather than questioning the idea that female sexuality is ugly and threatening, they merely moved the line that divides the (desirable) docile good girls from the (scary) independent bad girls.

Personally I think erotica — even visual porn — doesn’t need to contain such a negative message. Even when used for individual pleasure, there’s no reason an erotic picture of a naked woman should imply one person using another as opposed to inspiring a fantasy of a mutually pleasurable experience where the woman’s enjoyment matters.

I discussed this in my post about feminism and porn.

A real sexual revolution, one that changes the psycho-sexual paradigm of human nature itself, is already underway. This is the final frontier. In can be summed up by the verse from W. Shakespeare:

“Call it not love for Love to heaven is fled
Since sweating lust on earth usurped his name.
Under whose simple semblance man has fed,
upon fresh beauty blotting it with blame,
which the hot tyrant stains and soon bereaves
as caterpillars do the tender leaves.”

“Love comforteth like sunshine after rain,
while lusts effect is tempest after sun.
Love’s gentle spring doth always fresh remain,
lust’s winter comes ere summer half be done.
Love surfeits not, lust like a glutton dies,
Love is all truth, lust full of forged lies.”

Check the link:
http://www.energon.org.uk

Thanks for the sake of your sharing, it’ s bloody helpful

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