Wednesday, September 10, 2014

thoughts on consent #2 - fictional non-consent

This is a short series of posts regarding several different aspects of consent.  In the last post I shared thoughts on consent as it related to hacked photos published on the internet. In it I discussed how I came to the realization that if underage girls could not consent to sharing photos of their naked bodies, It seemed only logical that of- age ladies should be equally protected, because they did not consent to share those pictures with the public.  

One of the reasons I started thinking about this topic was the experience, fairly recently, of an author friend of mine.  Natasha Knight is a well- respected and successful writer of hot spanking fiction. I've discussed her (and she's discussed me) before. Her most recent work was significantly darker than the typical spanking romance genre.   It's a story involving a post- apocalyptic world where most of the human population is rendered infertile but special women with the ability to breed are definitely special, are sort of revered, but sort of treated as property or slaves to be traded and used.  There are heavy themes of non-consensual spankings, whippings, and sex throughout. Originally the name of the book was His to Breed, and the cover looked like this:

But as chronicled here, Amazon gave it the dreaded adult tag and it was difficult to find on that site, which led to a slight repackaging to pass the Amazon censors. the end result was the same story, but described differently and looked like this:

See there, that's okay, you can't see her skimpy panties, and no mention of "breeding" there, right? (As another aside, here are some thoughts on reading naughty stories on your Kindle or Kindle app.)

Okay so back to thoughts on consent- I read it, and I liked it. It was pretty hot. But I kinda felt bad about liking it; felt dirty for thinking it was hot.  (Not to spoil it, but things change and you have to read to the end to feel at least a little bit better about yourself.) Still, there were definitely non-consensual scenes throughout the book. 

If we value consent, and use the lack of consent to determine that some things (e.g., naked pictures of celebrities) are off-limits, despite the fact that they may be sexually arousing... we should consider erotic fictional accounts portraying non-consent off-limits too, right? right? 

Wait a minute... there are tons of books involving BDSM and slavery. Anyone ever heard of Gorean slaves? Those books are easily accessible on Amazon, and not tagged "adult".  Oh wait, there was also that little novel called Lolita. It involved a 12-year old girl in sexual situations, even though she was definitely under the age of consent (even at the time). It's still for sale on Amazon, and in a special 50th anniversary edition. It was named one of Time magazine's top 100 novels of the twentieth century, and, along with Catch-22, was so culturally significant that it's title entered the American lexicon.  If the story of an underage girl who society has deemed too young to rationally consent to sex can lead to great literature, why can't we explore fictional non-consent? Maybe it's okay to go to a dark place in fiction, and see how that makes one feel- how would I act differently if thrust into that setting?

More thoughts coming soon, and I'm not sure I can limit this  series on consent to just three entries.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

thoughts on consent #1 - "the fappening"

This started out as a very long post, and I've decided to divide into three separate posts since you know, I post so often nowadays!  

Part two will deal with consent in a fictional spanking setting and part three will deal with my thoughts on consent in spanking play.

But for now... Surely you've heard of the hacked celebrity nude photos in the last couple of weeks. It was kind of a big deal and someone came up with a name for the situation. The fappening. The FBI is investigating. Seriously.

I've discussed before my thoughts about why we like to see naked celebrities. I think it's not just that they're better looking than us, but the fact that we "know" them and get to see them naked. Maybe I'm just speaking for myself. So of course I looked. I know, shame on me (more on that later) I can't post a link because links keep appearing and disappearing quickly as a game of cease and desist whack-a-mole has developed. 

For the most part, I was disappointed. I guess I'm really out of it when it comes to current celebrities but there weren't many names I recognized. I do follow sports though, and soccer player Hope Solo looked better in ESPN magazine.

Of course I also recognized SI swimsuit model Kate Upton. Most of the photos were relatively tame- these were, after all pics sent on iPhones. But Kate sent lots of good ones. I thought, "Who can blame her? She's probably one of the most beautiful creatures on the planet?" 

But then... I was looking at a list of the celebrities, and a couple of them had the pictures removed because apparently they were underage at the time the photos were taken. Well good, I thought, there's honor among thieves, er... hackers. but turns out those were banned by Reddit early on. Then I started thinking about it- we as a society don't allow the posting of underage news because they have not attained the age of consent.  It's one think for bajillions of naked pictures of folks to be all over the internet, but those folks were old enough to consent to allow that. We don't allow pictures of sixteen-year-olds because society has deemed them too young to give informed consent to sexual acts or to display their bodies.  But wait a minute, you know what? the other ladies in those pics didn't give their consent either, right? they meant to send those pics to someone, but not the world, right?  

And so I felt bad and decided not to look at them again. Yeah, I probably knew that to begin with, but just shows that my logic can get in the way of even my rationalization.

(As an aside, and this is probably worth a whole 'nother discussion in and of itself, but one which I'm not going to touch! -girls are entering puberty earlier, but age of consent laws are higher than at any point in history.)

You read through all this and there were no fun pictures... well, you know what I can rationalize though? Consensual modelling accidentally published without photoshop touch ups, So here you go:
Kate as she appeared in the swimsuit issue
And the photo that was accidentally published on their swimsuit site. Notice the tattoos on her finger and wrist, brushstrokes, and her uhm... lady bits. Shes a beautiful woman, after all, not a Barbie doll...

And another:

and here's that missing nipple:

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

male gaze/female gaze vs. the undefinable topless F/M OTK spanking

The "male gaze" was decried decades ago by feminists as a feature of "gender power asymmetry in film." Briefly stated, the "male gaze" was premised on the belief that that women were objectified in film because heterosexual men were in control of the camera.  So there would be a - perhaps unintentional, yet misogynistic focus on womanly curves of the actresses portrayed on TV or film.   Fair enough. Maybe so. I'm more likely to watch the weather or traffic when someone with boobies like this on.
But in the past few years, there has been an increasing focus, on the internet at least, on the female gaze. And those who hope to inspire it. 
Good for them.  Personally, I think bountiful boobies and jiggling asses on women are far more pleasing to the eye, and designed/evolved to please the male eye vs. a penis, which is sort of just functional, but maybe I'm just a really male-centered male.  But if ladies like to gaze at men- more power to them!  So let's turn to the far less (possibly) male-centered world of F/M spanking:

Actually, a great deal of that focuses on female curves, even if not explicitly...  A lot of F/M spanking focuses on the female curves, but purposefully doesn't show the "naughty bits" of either gender.
There are plenty of examples of topless femme dommes, but that's not really what I'm talking about- I won't pretend to understand the sexual appeal there, but I have no doubt the "gaze" is geared toward males.
But the F/M otk spanking does appeal to me, and for the most part, those scenes include a fully clothed woman, or one in lingerie teasing but not showing anything inappropriate.
I've found some F/F scenes where the female spanker is topless
And some undoubtedly female gaze shirtless men spanking women...
But the topless female spanking a man OTK is fairly rare. 
I first saw such a movie way back when was a tiny site in its infancy with a few realplayer movies over a decade ago. There were a few videos of the "webmistress" spanking the "webmaster" - normally at that point I avoided F/M videos or stories... but well, her boobs bouncing when she spanked him were sort of appealing to my male gaze... The act of spanking OTK involves lifting up the arm and the contraction of the pectoral muscle, which in a woman typically involves the male-appealing bouncing and wobbling of the boobies... but if it's the man bent over her knee getting a spanking, can even a feminist decry the male gaze at such a sight given what's going on in such a scene? The spanker is exposing herself, but is obviously in a position of power. Where does one draw the line between the frequent giving a spanking in a swimsuit and the far less frequent giving a spanking with your boobies bouncing? Perhaps some blame falls on the professional spankers who think (mistakenly) that if they don't take their clothes off that they'll be immune from any law enforcement action should they be questioned.  Another factor I'm sure is that studios filming F/M scenes fail to take into account the appeal of topless F/M scenes, because they're so rare to begin with, and because, if given a choice, the models would presumably keep their tops on.  In my (ever so humble) opinion, there are far too few F/M spanking scenes involving topless women.  Perhaps there's an intimacy involved that appeals to me, or maybe I just like to see boobies bounce.

p.s. the death of Robin Williams sucks. And I don't give a whit about most celebrity deaths. 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

inspired by Hermione's "from the top shelf" -Harry Potter scared about getting the cane

Earlier this week, the perhaps ironically named Hermione posted a brief excerpt from a Stephen King novel containing a scene with a couple of belt "whuppins".   I found a spanking related reference in another best-selling novel this month, and figured it was worth mentioning.

As it turns out, I'm reading the first Harry Potter book a chapter a night to my kids as a bedtime story. I'll admit, it's a bit of a beating - pun unintended. Now I'll also admit that I've read a whole bunch of stories about British boarding schools through the years, and most are much shorter and involve students getting the cane. Hogwarts is a British boarding school. So perhaps I shouldn't have been, but I was shocked when, in Chapter 9, there's a reference to caning.  Harry has just shown himself to be surprisingly adept at flying with a broomstick, and for an admirable reason, but in doing so has broken the rules.  A professor sees what he has done, and summons him to come with her. He's afraid he will be expelled or caned. When I was reading it I almost saw the word "cane" in the next line before I read it and tried to read it quickly, hoping my kids wouldn't ask what that meant. Fortunately, they didn't. There are a lot of weird words in the book, and a lot of strange customs and I think they only grasp the main points of the story anyway. 

I looked on the internet to see if there were any references to that scene/line in the book and I couldn't find much, save for the comments here. However- I was shocked to discover that there are over 100 fan-fiction stories written about spanking in the Harry Potter universe, as well as another 50+ more in a separate section involving pure discipline (without sex). Seriously.

I admit that I wouldn't mind reading about Hermione (the character, not the blogger- well, okay maybe her too) getting caned later on- like several books later- after she's of age. Hopefully by that point I won't be reading it as a bedtime story!

I couldn't find any good illustrations for this post. (They're all holding magic wands, not canes or switches!)
But I did find one amusing image with a search for "Harry Potter spanking" and I'll leave you with that...

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

spanking etymology- "wood shedding" and "Bring the wood"

Etymology is the study of the origin of words and their meaning through history. I think a couple of phrases are used by folks who are ignorant of the spanking-related etymology of those phrases. Let's take them one at a time:

Wood shedding:
Being taken to the woodshed is obviously a reference to be taken out back to a private setting for a spanking.

impressive woodshed!
But what about when lawyers woodshed a client/witness? It's a colloquial phrase used to describe preparing a client or witness for depositions and/or cross examinations.

That preparation goes something like this:

"You have to listen to the question and answer it truthfully, but don't offer up more information than you need to.  He'll be trying to get all the information he can from you, and your job is to give as little information as you can without outright lying.  For example, if he asks you if you can tell him what time it is, how do you respond?" ...

"Wrong! the correct answer is 'Yes.' That's it!  Yes, you can technically tell him what time it is.  Because you have a watch! But you shouldn't volunteer that it's 12:15 pm, much less talk about how fucking cool or expensive your watch is!"

I'm not making this up. It's an actual term. See. Told ya so. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals (the one that covers TX, LA, and MS, natch) actually opined on witness preparation.

Whether those that use the term think about the spanking related etymology- I don't know, but I doubt it.

Bring the Wood:
It's a real phrase. In football it means a punishing hit. Seriously. It's been adopted by some of the nation's best teams as a mantra. Seriously.

I sincerely doubt that users of either of theses phrases consider that they originated in corporal punishment, but every time I hear one of these phrases I think of spanking, and someone getting butthurt.