If you ask it that way it's kind of an odd question, isn't it? I mean we're basically sexual all the time. We just aren't always acting on our sexual desires. But we are not without our sexuality. Still, any time personal sexuality makes itself visible in relationships like those between coworkers or between students and teachers things get very muddy very quickly
I ask the question because of this story. I read it about it first on the dankprofessor's blog. (The dankprofessor is Barry Dank, and he writes frequently about the politics of sex on college campuses.)
Briefly the story is this:
A while back I was critical of the way that some of the influential feminist bloggers at Feministe and Feministing and Shakesville were proclaiming their love of Bob Herbert writings on sex work. I want to take just a moment to applaud Holly at Feministe for her interview with The Sex Workers Project's Sienna Baskin. The Sex Workers Project, part of the Urban Justice Institute, is an organization I think very highly of especially as a source for sex worker advocacy and solid research on the sex industry. It's a great resource for the press, for policy makers, and for the rest of us.
Angela K. Brown of the AP (via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram) brings us this orgasmic news:
FORT WORTH, Texas — A federal appeals court has overturned a Texas statute outlawing sex toy sales, leaving Alabama as the state with the strictest ban on such devices.
The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that the Texas law making it illegal to sell or promote obscene devices, punishable by up to two years in jail, violated the Constitution’s 14th Amendment on the right to privacy.
I’ve been thinking a lot about my clit.
As I play with more new partners, I continue to search for the best words and images to help them understand what I like best, what actually brings me to orgasm. When I was a little girl, long before I knew what I was doing, I masturbated by squeezing my legs together, one leg wrapped around the other. As I matured, I tried other methods, turning household objects into sex toys, using my fingers, but I always returned to squeezing my legs in increasing pulses of muscle clenches. It always delivered that amazing feeling that I was wanted.
Via two of my favorite blogs yesterday I learned about some kids who really put the lie to the assumption that teens are too immature to handle clear conversation about sex.
First, from Jessica at Feministing I learned about two 8th grade girls who, to protest their school's teaching abstinence only sex ed wore t-shirts that had condoms pinned to them, and the words "Safe Sex or No Sex" written across the front. They were suspended for two days for causing a distraction and dressing inappropriately.
New York University
HARD CORE ART FILM
The Contemporary Realm of the Senses
February 19, Tuesday
6 to 7:30 PM
19 University Place, 1st Floor Great Room
between 8th Street and Waverly Place
Film Studies and Rhetoric, UC Berkeley
How might we interpret the unsimulated sex in recent movies likeShortbus, Fat Girl, and Intimacy? What can one respond to the charge that unsimulated sex “leaves nothing to the imagination”?
Co-sponsored by NYU Cinema Studies.
This event is free and open to the public. Venue is wheelchair accessible.
Herbert's column in the NY Times this morning reprises his claims about the misogyny of prostitution and pornography but in a different context this time and with some unwittingly apt parallels.
Readers of this blog know that I have a very different analysis of sex work, one that doesn't assume that prostitution or pornography are inherently and essentially misogynistic, so I won't reprise that here. (You can get a glimpse of some of that here and here) Instead, I'd like to point out some of the things I think make Herbert's analysis here especially weak, including some false assumptions about causality, and unfortunate parallels to sports and the military.