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Rape and Sexual Assault

I’d Rather Be “Negative”: Allecto Does It Again

I want to know how ‘multiple subject positions’ and ‘transgressing gender’ will stop men from raping babies. I want to know how ‘gender fucking’ and ‘transgressive performativity’ will stop men from bashing and slaughtering women. I want to know how the ‘lesbian phallus’ and ‘drag’ will stop the sexualisation of women, will stop women from starving themselves, will stop girls from cutting themselves, will stop men buying women for sex, will stop men from raping us, will stop men from viewing us as sex, will stop men from viewing us as whores. I want to know how post-modernism will stop men. Right now.

I want to wake up tomorrow knowing that there are absolutely no women being bashed in any given second in the whole world. I want to wake up tomorrow knowing that every single sex-trafficked woman currently enslaved by men, to men, for men, has been released. I want to wake up knowing that every man in the world would be absolutely horrified and repulsed by the idea of doing anything to a woman that she did not wholly desire. I want to wake up knowing that no man or woman would do anything harmful (this includes fisting, BDSM, subordination, domination etc.) to any other man or woman and call it love. I want to wake up knowing that every single one of our political prisoners have been freed, the lesbian seven, Aung Sun Suu Kyi. I want to wake up in a world where men don’t kill us or each other, where women are free to define what words like love, peace and freedom actually mean because we are the ones that have the power to make them happen.

If this makes me negative then so be it. I’d rather be negative than sick enough to call fisting a legitimate act of love. I’d rather be negative than sick enough to defend men’s right to use economic means to force women into sexual slavery. I’d rather be negative.

Post-modernism is neo-liberalism. Neo-liberalism is post-modernism. Neo-liberalism/post-modernism is a male conspired disease that has robbed me of so many of my sisters. I grieve for them. I yearn for them.

Read the whole thing

Heart

Discussion

23 thoughts on “I’d Rather Be “Negative”: Allecto Does It Again

  1. Wow. Spot on.

    Thank you Allecto

    Posted by Cinder | September 27, 2007, 5:31 pm
  2. Mercy!

    Posted by pisaquari | September 27, 2007, 5:42 pm
  3. It such a wonderful piece of writing. Rage is a normal reaction to the hate that men put onto women and children. Otherwise it is so hard with physical, sexual and abuse that is all around.
    I do understand how people can be so detach from the pain that women and children have to live with.
    Rage is good, especially if it can make action.

    Posted by Rebecca | September 27, 2007, 7:43 pm
  4. Allecto is not ‘negative’ but such insults are used as always to silence those who refuse to accept and condone the lies being told to excuse men’s violence to women. Allecto sees reality not myth.

    As Rebecca said, rage can and often is used constructively as demonstrated by Allecto’s rage and anger. Negativity is acceptance of a world wherein women are sexualised commodites to be exploited and dehumanised.

    Posted by jennifer drew | September 27, 2007, 10:25 pm
  5. I am going to approve a comment I’ve been hesitant to approve, mostly because a lot of people read my blog and I feel protective of my commenter wimmin. But I think the commenter has said something important, so I am going to approve the comment, with the request that responses to this particular comment, written by April, be lesbians only. You’ll understand when you read, and thanks for *being* understanding. If you want to comment on other things related to allecto’s fabulous post, feel free, but so far as responses to April’s comment, again, just dykes please.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 3:48 am
  6. Allecto,

    Couldn’t agree with you more on most of your points, but I happen to know that “fisting” does not hurt me. Maybe you are talking about another practice than what I mean? I hesitate to go into the details here, because I’m kind of private about sex, not a postmodern exhibitionist in the least. But what I’ve found is that my girlfriend can put her whole hand inside me and thrust, sometimes without extra lubrication, and it feels good, full, not at all painful. It’s very intimate, and I feel really close to her during and afterwards.

    I have not been with another woman I can do this to, as it causes them discomfort. So of course, I have not, and would NOT do this to another woman against her wishes, or even promote this as a standard practice she should strive to be adventurous about. I don’t think it works for a lot of women. Maybe you want to amend or explain your objection to this practice?

    Thanks,
    April

    Posted by april | September 28, 2007, 3:49 am
  7. I have to admit, that while I get some of this — and certainly the greater concerns driving it — I do take issue with other parts.

    For instance, with defining fisting as somehow unloving and “sick.” I get — really, I do — taking issue with that term for deep manual sex ( and all other implications and what it suggests aside, just as a sex eductaor who appreciates accuracy, I take issue with it), but I really don’t get classing with with BDSM, nor declaring a common enough form of lesbian sex and women’s pleasure to be some kind of illness or psychosis.

    I won’t get too in-depth (no pun intended), but physiologically speaking, the latter half of the vagina really ONLY gets sensation — or rather, the internal clitoris that surrounds it does — by being very full. So, it should be unsurpising that for women who want that sensation, plenty enjoy — and need, to feel that — having a good part, if not all, of someone’s hand in the vagina. It’s also not harmful by design, by any means. Per usual, any unwanted sexual activity, forced sexual activity, or entry into the vagina that a woman doesn’t want and isn’t done right can be. But classing that by a given activity — without any thought for how diverse the dymanics involved can be — strikes me as dangerous, especially when it’s an activity plenty of women do amongst themselves (or heck, with male partners, as well), with love and care, and for their own mutual pleasure. Especially when so much of what women discover that’s about their pleasure or desires and that isn’t about penises is defined as unloving or sick by an entirely different group altogether. But mostly, it’s the “sick” and “unloving” that is sticking in my craw.

    (Obviously, too, any implication that simply having the vagina all full is harmful or unloving is also beyond tricky when we consider childbirth.)

    I’m also not in agreement about certain transgender and genderqueer attitudes (for lack of a better word), however I AM in agreement that none of what’s being brought up here (per sexuality approaches/theory) is going to somehow change the status of women or how women are viewed and treated by men. That’s not a sentiment that bothers me, and I think it’s apt. Obviously, given what I do with my work, I think sexuality issues are very important — and very important to many women, because having an enslaved, co-opted or shamed sexuality is incredibly harmful and absolutely one area of many in which women are oppressed — and can play a part in equality (and I wouldn’t group all of sexuality under post-modernism), but only one part. I also know full well that what can be improved with sexuality for women and in culture will ever be intensely limited until greater inequities are balanced in other avenues.

    I don’t mean to me a nigglesnit (which I’m sure isn’t a word, but it felt right), or to undermine the power of some of what is being said here; to undermine someone else’s words which are clearly expressing some very powerful things which are incredibly important. This was just troubling me all day, and I had to say something.

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 4:04 am
  8. (FYI, if Cheryl approves it, I posted the comment I did before this one before reading April’s or Cheryl’s last posts. It’s not a huge mea culpa, as I have ID’d as a dyke in my life, and have had female partners throughout as well, but as a couple of years ago, a great love of my life just happened to show up in a male body, and I remain with him, I don’t want to appear disingenuous if she does approve that comment, or trample anyone else’s space unintentionally.)

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 4:44 am
  9. Yeah, it’s all good, Heather. Maybe I should not say dykes only, but women who have had woman partners as opposed to women who have had male partners only.

    That makes more sense.

    Hugs,

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 4:50 am
  10. In retrospect, I owe a far greater apology for my gross overuse of parentheses. 🙂

    It’s been a long day….

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 4:55 am
  11. One thought I had was that in order for a hand to go into the vagina pleasurably, whether closed, as with a fist, or open, there has to be substantial arousal. I think the fisting allecto was talking about is the violent fisting that is, essentially, rape. :””””( I don’t think “fisting” is really a descriptive term for what you, Heather, and April, are describing, because the term itself seems to carry with it violent or BDSM connotations. Plus, it’s an incredibly ugly word which does not bring love or beauty or intimacy or sexual pleasure to mind.

    It’s true that het sex can include this practice pleasurably, but I think this is uncommon amongst het couples as an act of mutuality.

    Heart

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 4:56 am
  12. I think, too, something about holding out this practice called “fisting” (ugh) as hawt and sexy and desirable. It’s of a piece with all of the other violent crap women are supposed to get off on.

    And better parentheses than ellipses! OR CAPS LIKE YOU’VE LOST YOUR MIND (seen that lately!). :/

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 4:59 am
  13. When I say “ugh” there, I mean the word “fisting.” UGH. When you think of a fist, you think of someone slugging someone with a fist!

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 5:02 am
  14. Thanks for the praise sisters!!

    Hmm… I still stand by what I said about fisting. The word fisting seems to me to mean fucking and I would call fucking sick also.

    So, deep loving gentle touch=all good.

    Fisting=sick.

    I have to say that I had no idea that someone can have a hand inside them without it hurting. I’m a bit sceptical really. Also there is not internal clitoris.

    In regards to childbirth, well childbirth hurts. I don’t think any woman would recommend childbirth as a sexual exercise.

    Posted by allecto | September 28, 2007, 10:58 am
  15. There most certainly is an internal clitoris! (This is my job and has been for ten years now: I take it pretty seriously.)

    The portion of the clitoris which one sees/feels on the outside, the hood and glans, is just one part of the clitoris.

    Internally, there are other portions which take up a pretty substantial piece of real estate: the shaft, which you can feel with your fingers beneath the hood, the crura, or “legs” of the clitoris run down the sides of the outer labia and towards the inner thighs, and the vestibular bulbs, which are pretty sizeable bundles of erectile tissue, which essentially surround the lower half of the vaginal canal near the vestibular and Bartholin’s glands.

    Don’t believe me? Well, it’s in my book, if you’re curious, which did get fact-checked by my publisher, Natalie Angier describes it in-depth in “Woman: An Intimate Geography,” Laura Berman writes about it in her work, Rebecca Chalker in “The Clitoral Truth,” and Betty Dodson discusses it often, but you could also look here or here, or here, or here, or here, or here, or here, just to get started.

    And again, I certainly get objecting to the term fisting — I use “deep manual sex” myself in the education work and in my bed. Certainly, yes, childbirth hurts, but I don’t know that a feminist woman would call it unloving or sick just because it fills the vaginal canal so intensely, you know?

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 3:50 pm
  16. Also, if you want to have a gander at what it looks like, the illustrator for my book did a really nice job — especially considering that nearly every illustration of female anatomy out there is pretty outmoded and very clearly biased by what a lot of men would prefer it to be like. Lord forbid we illustrate that we’ve a sensory sexual organ that not only has more nerve endings of the penis, but which has erectile tissue of comprable size!

    http://www.scarleteen.com/article/body/anatomy_pink_parts_female_sexual_anatomy

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 3:58 pm
  17. Fisting is a horrid, horrid, horrid word.

    Posted by E. K. "Kitty" Glendower | September 28, 2007, 5:30 pm
  18. This is such a great article, Heart.

    I agree that there should be another term for fisting–or maybe it should just be considered another way to make love and that’s that. I do have a het friend who watches porn just to see what men like, but even she is really grossed out by the idea of fisting. Maybe it’s something about having a *man* penetrate a woman in that way that’s frightening? I don’t know.

    Posted by Laur | September 28, 2007, 5:39 pm
  19. Well, and per usual, representations of any activity as shown in porn are not often sound respresentations of what happens in people’s own bedrooms.

    That’s stating the obvious, I know, but particularly when we’re talking about lesbian sex (and also when we’re talking about male/female sex that is anything beyond the heteronormative/pornographic paradigm), so relatively few people have experience or any sound idea of what actually goes on, how these things actually happen and are played out, what the actuality of certain activities that aren’t so normative or standard feel like, etc. I think we have to be particularly careful not to figure that what a media — particularly one meant for male sexual entertainment — shows us has anything at all to do with everyone’s reality.

    I personally don’t find the idea of men engaging in deep manual sex frightening, just like I don’t with women, nor has that been my personal experience with either sex. Some of that is because when it’s done right, to feel good, it requires ever more graduality, patience and communication than penile intercourse tends to — rom both sides — and certainly doesn’t often come with the usual intercourse script affixed. Not in my bed, anyway, but then, intercourse doesn’t come with the usual script in my bed, either. But obviously, that’s personal experience, not a one-size-fits-all — however, I’m certainly not alone, by any stretch, in that experience, especially when you’re talking about lesbian sex.

    Posted by Heather | September 28, 2007, 6:28 pm
  20. Remember that the response to April’s comment is to be women who have had intimate relationships with women only, just a reminder.

    Posted by womensspace | September 28, 2007, 10:28 pm
  21. Great post and interesting comments!!!

    Posted by Casdok | September 29, 2007, 10:34 am
  22. An interesting post, but I also have to chime in in defence of “fisting”. It’s an activity I very much enjoy, from both end, and with both men and women… and I’ve always experienced it as a very slow, very gentle, very intense moment of exploring each other’s bodies. If done properly, the “filled” feeling is incredible, and it’s always very intimate and emotional for me. When I’m the one penetrating, it’s an amazing feeling when my partner eventually accepts my hand, and that’s not unconnected to the fact that every partner who has asked me to do this has been extremely into it and found the experience enjoyable.

    I often hear people expressing views of fisting that involve roughness, force, or excessive thrusting. I first encountered the activity as practised by lesbians, and was quite surprised to hear that the activity described this way. It took me a while to realise that this impression comes from the way it is portrayed in “heterosexual” pornography… I’ve never seen this material, so don’t draw any connections between this intimate and wonderful experience and the seemingly horrible way it’s being presented in that medium. I can’t help but think it’s a horrible shame that yet another thing enjoyed and shared amongst women who love women has been tainted by made-for-men modern mainstream pornography.

    *shrug*

    But then, it seems my experience and perceptions on this topic are far from standard.

    Posted by hexy | September 30, 2007, 1:15 pm
  23. Re: April’s comment

    I’ve noticed that S & M and other “practices” are being brought out in lesbian groups to shock and intimidate other women. And I’ve noticed that lesbian worlds are being corrupted by gay male sexual practices. While gay men can be quite decent in terms of art and politics, their personal lives, once you get to know them are absolutely alarming. These lives that were once separate from lesbians, now contaminate many lesbian groups in Los Angeles.

    The sexual practices of gay men that lesbians now immitate lead to AIDS. We really have to be aware of this. Do you ever wonder why all lesbian sexuality is touted except monogamy and fidelity? Do you ever wonder why those of us who are profoundly shocked by lesbian behavior are called names as if we’re the enemy?

    Some of this stuff is really about women’s sexual abuse in childhood and incest experiences. Once we created rape crisis centers, but now we want to promote the rape like practice of fisting! I fear for my younger sisters out there.

    So I think this kind of sex (fisting) is harmful as a kind of verbal pornography that seems very pervasive in lesbian groups I’ve been in in Los Angeles. With the decline of lesbian feminism has come this huge degrading deluge, and post modernism is the “intellectual” excuse I’ve heard used again and again.

    One of my best friends said her younger lover kept wanting her to do “scenes” when she is dead set against the anti-feminist practice of equating pain with love. This was not consentual! It was trotted out because of the verbal garbage that is floating around out there!

    Personally, these discussions make me very uneasy. With the decline of lesbian separatism and lesbian feminism we have what I call the age of lesbian pornography. I was appauled at the L-Word for this very reason, and shocked that so many younger lesbians were getting so influenced by this. I refused to watch The L-Word after the first season, because no long term lesbian couples were depicted in the show– it was soft core porn. I even talked to one of the actresses about this and objected to her personally. She seemed clueless about the points I was making.

    We need to pay attention. I saw a lot of this sex talk in a lesbian discussion group I used to lead be brought up by obviously very mentally ill women as a tactic to grab attention and silence other women. I’ve heard of lesbians joking about “raping” other women, and I’ve even heard a lesbian identified MTF talk about performing sex acts on cable T.V. and supporting S & M. She also bragged about entering a wet T-shirt contest at a lesbian bar. I kid you not! After that episode I felt sick for days. Sick of moral decay, sick for my sisters going along with this nonsense. I’m putting my foot down here…enough already!

    When women go down this road it is a very serious moral danger for lesbians who hold women in the highest regard. So I’d have to disagree with April’s post and fully support the rage and anger of Alecto. This kind of subject matter tends to silence women and not promote dialogue in groups.

    I don’t know why we can’t aspire to higher lesbian feminism, rather than sink to the “sex sells” mentality that is the very heart of patriarchy. And I feel empowered just reading these posts, because now other women are stating these truths with courage. Alecto, you’re a heronine. Those who call you negative simply can’t handle the truth, and want a sugar coated world!

    Posted by Satsuma | October 25, 2007, 8:03 pm

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