Cheat-Seeking Missles

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Our Crumbling Civilization: FemPorn Edition

Feminism and porn? How do those two go together? (And whether they do or not, how in the heck will I illustrate this post?)

Porn makes billions because it makes men shop. Women shop enough already; just stop by the directory the next time you're at the mall and compare the number of women's clothing stores to men's clothing stores. But men ... men just couldn't be bothered.

The seedy porn industry has succeeded because it discovered how to unleash the man-bucks. In 2006, sales, rentals and downloads of porn videos, plus "exotic" club revenues, porn magazines and porn gizmos (I don't want to know!) totaled $13.3 billion in the US, up about half a billion from the previous year. (source)

That didn't happen because porn films treat women and women's issues sensitively; guys just won't pay for Steel Magnolias Naked or Thelma & Louise & Bubba. Guy's fantasies aren't generally tender and soft, and the porn industry has made itself rich via compliant women who exist not for themselves, but to satisfy men, no matter what.

So if women want to get in on the fantasy action, with sensitive porn films (possibly with more talk than action, I don't' know ...), I can't really say great, but it's certainly no worse and possibly quite a bit more noble than the traditional porn biz. Or so I thought until I took a look at the Feminist Porn Awards, and discovered that the philosophy behind these awards is that "the answer to bad porn isn't no porn, it's more porn."

And, as expected, feminism turns out not to mean "celebrating the feminine mystique" so much as it means "getting really sick in a woman's [?] body." For example, one of the nominee directors is described as "a queer femmegimp who is a PhD student at York University in Toronto, ON. Her work tends to focus on the intersections of radical queer, disability and sex/uality."

Another is "a transgender performance artist, filmmaker [whose] work [covers] deconstruction of gender, power dynamics, erotic methodology and public personas."

A third is a former female firefighter who runs a little outfit called "GoodDykePorn."

I can't imagine that these feminists are producing work that appeals to the feminine. And sure enough, while the festival's Web site isn't updated with the winners yet, Salon tells us it was a tender little movie that appeals to womankind's deep yearning for understanding and sensuality called "Bondage Boob Tube."

Women are half of our civilization, and we're crumbling if this is how those who supposedly care about them treat them.

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